The Journal Newsletter – May/June 2004

The Journal Newsletter

May/June 2004


Welcome to summer! Unless you live in the Southern Hemisphere, where it’s now winter.

I recently visited Australia, where it was autumn at the time, and Singapore, where it’s nearly always summer. So in just over 3 months I’ve now experienced a year’s worth of seasons. And summer twice. Life can get interesting on you all of a sudden. So be more prepared than I was, and get your passport now. 😉

Somewhere in there is the reason why the May and June newsletters have been combined, and why that combined newsletter is arriving at the very end of June. We should be back on our regular monthly schedule, though, as of mid-July.

Once again, we have a double serving of writing exercises. And our tip this month is about sorting your loose-leaf entries.

Thank you for choosing DavidRM Software’s The Journal!

Tips & Tricks

TIP: How to Sort Your Loose-Leaf Entries

As your “Notebook” and other loose-leaf categories accumulate entries, you may find that you want to sort those entries alphabetically to make them easier to find.

Sorting All Entries (and sub-entries)

To sort all of the entries in your category:

  1. Click on the “Tools” menu and choose “Sort Category Entries”.
  2. When asked “Sort all sub-entries?”, click on “Yes”.

This will sort all of the entries in the category, at all levels in the “entry tree”, by the normal English alphabet.

NOTE: There is no way to un-sort. You can, however, use the “Move Entry Up” (Alt+Up) and “Move Entry Down” (Alt+Down) commands on the “Entry” menu to re-arrange entries after sorting.

Sorting Top-Level Entries

To sort *only* the top-level (root) entries in your loose-leaf category:

  1. Click on the “Tools” menu and choose “Sort Category Entries”.
  2. When asked “Sort all sub-entries?”, click on “No”.

Sort Sub-Entries

To sort the sub-entries of any entry:

  1. Click on the entry with the sub-entries you want to sort.
  2. Click on the “Tools” menu and choose “Sort Sub-Entries”.

This command only sorts the sub-entries of the currently selected entry. If any of the sub-entries have sub-entries, those will not be sorted.

Writing Prompts

by Susan Michael

Free Writing Exercise – 1. Write for 20 minutes starting with “The Color of Smoke”. About halfway through, interject, “The Use of an Elevator”.

2. Write for 20 minutes using “Shallow Breath”.

Poetry Exercise – 1. Make a list of your favorite lines from poetry. Use these lines in a collage or create a pocket journal that has one line per page. Memorize them. (And then, optionally, for you Mark Strand fans, eat them.)

2. 2. Write a Tercet. Examples:

Prose Exercise – 1. Write about something that transforms into something more or less than it starts out to be.

2. Write a prose description/synopsis of the novel that you will never write, or the one you will never read.

Journaling Exercise – 1. Transitionals write about the things that are between other things. (Sidewalk seams, breaths, silence, relationships.)

2. Write a list of spoofs. Choose a title of a movie, book, or a genre such as self help and write several spoofs of that title. For instance. “Dr. Strangelove, or How I learned to Stop Worrying and Love the bomb” becomes “Triple Espresso, or How I Learned to Drink Coffee and Embrace the Latte”. These work well if you develop a theme for your variations.

Memoir Prompt – 1. Write about an employment that you had which you either learned a great deal from, or which you dreaded. Write in a narrative form.

2. Write thoughts prompted by your high school yearbook.

About the author: Susan Michael currently facilitates the Tulsa Writers Cafe for the Arts & Humanities Council in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Ms. Michael has also led writing & creativity workshops for children, teenagers, and adults.

Submission Information

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:

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.


Editor: David Michael (
The Journal Newsletter Copyright © 2015 by David Michael.
Updated: June 18, 2015 — 9:56 pm