1. When did you begin keeping a journal/diary?
Age 9. I burned the early ones before I was 13 (pretentious much?), but I have the whole thing since 13.
2. Do you journal regularly or sporadically?
Sporadically, though frequency has varied from every day (or even multiple times a day) to roughly monthly.
3. Which, if any, of the following things do you use your journal for?: recording dreams, creative writing, arguing with particular individuals (your boss, your parents, your lover, etc.), listing books/movies, tracking your weight/diet/exercise, composing unsent/unsendable letters.
Sometimes dreams. Rarely any of the others.
4. What other purpose(s) do you use your journal for?
Therapy. Keeping track of what has happened.
5. What kind of material text do you use for a journal? (For example: leather bound hard-cover, cheap spiral notebook, etc.)
When I was a pretentious teenager (is there some other kind?), I used French school notebooks picked up in a PrisUnic, with bright colors and elaborately lined pages; at first I made an effort to use the horizontal & vertical lines to improve my handwriting, but eventually I gave up on that. Later I moved to looseleaf notebook paper, kept in large binders. For some time I’ve kept my personal journal entirely electronically (i.e., without printing out pages), which is odd because my research journal is handwritten. I like signalling to myself that I’m done with work by moving from the computer to handwritten notes, but for personal writing, I want to be able to go as fast as I’m thinking.
6. Where do you keep your old journals?
In a box in the basement. Or on a memory stick.
7. How often, if ever, have you read through your old journals?
Every few years, I think, I want to look something up. But “old” covers a lot of ground now. I’m more likely to look at the grad school or pre-tenure years than the teenage and college years, which are both painful and embarrassing to look at now. Well, so is a lot of the rest, actually. I said “therapy” above, right?
8. Have you ever allowed anyone else to read your journals?
NO. GOD, NO. And I always wonder why I keep them, and what I’ll do with them when I get old.
9. How has your journal keeping changed since you began blogging?
I don’t think it has. Blogging is extra.
10. Upload a picture of your journals (or as many as you can).