The Journal Newsletter
Welcome to The Journal Newsletter!
Summer activities (like the 4th of July and yard sales) have made the newsletter a bit late this month. Our apologies for that. We should be back on schedule in August.
Our tip this month continues last month’s discussion of “text styles”. And Susan, as always, has contributed a new set of writing exercises.
Also this month, Julie Garman gives us a very personal “How I Use The Journal”. So be sure to check that out.
Thank you for supporting DavidRM Software’s The Journal!
TIP: Text Styles
A text style is a pre-defined text format. A text style can set the font, change paragraph settings, use numbers or bullets, and more.
The Journal gives you a small number of text styles to begin with:
- Heading 1, Arial 14pt bold, 12pt after-spacing
- Heading 2, Arial 12pt bold-italic, 6pt after-spacing
- Heading 3, Arial 12pt italic, 6pt after-spacing
You can edit these text styles, if you want. You can even delete them. Also, you can create your own text styles for use in your entries.
To add or edit your text styles, click on the Format menu, and choose “Styles…” (or click on the Options menu, choose User Preferences, and bring up the “Styles” tab).
To edit a style, select the style in the list, and then click on “Edit”.
To create a new style, just click on “New”.
Text styles have a number of options you can set. Most of them are obvious, but some of them may seem a bit eclectic.
The first style options are the name of the style and the font (including face, size, color and attributes like bold and underline) the style will use. Also, there is the highlight color of the style, which is the color that will be behind the text (“highlighting” it).
The style’s paragraph options are a bit more involved. With the paragraph options, you can set whether the text will aligned right, left, block or centered. It’s also possible to have the text indented on either the right or the left, and even to set the amount space before and after paragraphs that use the style. Finally, you can make the style be a numbered/bulleted list, and even choose the type of numbering.
The last group of text style options are the “Override Options”. These options determine how the style interacts with the default style of the entry category, or even the currently active font in the entry. You can force the style to use either the default category style settings for font, size, or color, or force it to use the currently active font. These settings override the style’s own font settings. These override options can be mixed-and-matched.
Besides styles you create, The Journal also provides a number of “standard” text styles:
- Entry link style
- Internet/Email link style
- Bullet style
- Numbered List style
- Date style
- Time style
These styles can be viewed (and edited) by bringing up the Style form (Format menu, “Styles…”) and checking the “Show Standard Styles” option. Some of the standard styles restrict the style options you can change.
by Susan Michael
Free Writing Exercise – Write for 20 minutes (without editing) in any style using “At This Very Moment” as your title.
Poetry Exercise – List ten items that you would buy at an auction, or tag sale. Write a poem including those items. You may chose to title your poem, “Things Found At An Auction”. Variation, have someone else create a list for you.
Prose Exercise – Create a legend, myth, or fairytale about falling stars.
Journaling Exercise – List five wishes that you have. Continue the exercise by writing about the fulfillment of each wish.
Memoir Prompt – What do you enjoy about your life?
About the author: Susan Michael has facilitated several writing groups, and has lead writing & creativity workshops for the Arts & Humanities Council in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Editor’s Note: The Journal is used by people from all over the world, from many nations, representing a variety of personal, professional, and religious backgrounds. Journaling is by definition an intensely personal undertaking, so it should not be surprising that when someone writes about how or why they keep a journal that they will end up sharing personal information. The Journal Newsletter does not support any particular personal or religious lifestyle, but rather attempts to support anyone who keeps a journal, for whatever reason they do so. Thus, the views and opinions expressed in “How I Use The Journal” are solely those of the submitter and not necessarily the views of DavidRM Software. Whether you agree with the submitter’s views or not, I encourage you to read the article and glean from it the information and techniques that “ring true” for you.
by Julie Garman
I have read many articles through the years of how people use David’s Journal. Most of them have these wonderful ideas: a business journal laying out ideas for their business, or keeping ideas on writing projects, or any number of great uses for this incredible program. My use for it is a much more personal level and one I wanted to share with you.
In July of 1998, the love of my life had an affair and left me. I had a REAL hard time understanding and accepting it. We had been married since 1992 and on the surface, we seemed like the perfect couple. Everyone envied us. I would have sworn to you that I would spend my entire life with this man I was so incredibly in love with. The break up seemed to come completely out of left field. In early 1999, I stumbled across The Journal. From 1993 – 1999, I had used Microsoft Word for journal keeping. I had never gone back and read anything I had written, just jotted thoughts and feelings as they occurred to me through the years.
After I purchased The Journal, I copied and pasted all my Word journal entries into The Journal, breaking everything up and putting it all in chronological order. As I did so, I read each and every word I had written for over six years. It was the most amazing thing I have ever done in my life – to look at thoughts and feelings from a totally different perspective.
In between the lines, I now read all the clues that I should have seen all along: the loneliness, my husband’s drinking, the lack of communication between us, my frustration with all that, and the inability to get him to talk to me like we used to, how that man had become my entire world – on and on, and all starting as early as 1993. Many tears were shed over the period of the week it took me to get everything read and moved over.
I then used the notebook part of The Journal to write a four part essay of my life from the start of my marriage to the end. This story telling included quotes from my journal to make my points. When I finished, I had a clear picture of what had happened. I finally saw the things I had refused to see all along. And I finally began the long healing process that I had not been able to start on. I finally resolved things as I put everything into perspective – everything from my relationship to who I was.
I then started to write in The Journal every day. I wrote everything that occurred to me, from thoughts about my past, to ideas about my future. I wrote, and wrote and wrote. I used my journal as a therapist, catching myself in old bad habits, encouraging new ones. I prayed to God in my journal, asking for guidance. I used a different font to indicate prayers, so it makes them easy to spot and read over again.
My life has been on an upward climb since 1999. I have become more confident, sure of myself and my direction. I have learned to be introspective and try to make sure I’m not fooling myself in any given situation.
My journal is now full of happy stories about my children and life with my new husband (March 30th, 2002 was an AMAZING entry about my wedding…). Sometimes I go back and reread old entries and am amazed at the changes in me and my life. My journal makes me proud of who I am and what I’ve become. It’s a detailed accounting of my life the past ten years. What an amazing thing to cherish and keep forever!
If you would like to contribute to the “How I Use The Journal”, “Writing Exercises”, or “Tips & Tricks” sections, or would like to submit an article about journaling, writing, or another The Journal-related topic, we would love to hear from you.
Submissions for the newsletter should be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are submitting for a particular section, please indicate which one. Try to limit your submissions to 500-1000 words. Submissions may be edited for length and content.
If you prefer to remain anonymous, please state this in the email. Otherwise your name (but not your email) will be used in the article heading.
As always, if you have any suggestions for, or bug reports about, The Journal, please feel free to email them. Both are always welcome.