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Monthly Newsletter
April 2001 Vol.1 Issue 3
Corinne Pratz, Editor,
ISSN 1496-5747 Creative-Journal


  • Ramblings From the Editor
  • Special Announcement
  • Feature Article - Emotional Personification
  • March's Contest Extended for April
  • Review of Journaling Sites, Products or Services
  • Now On The Creative-Journal.Com Website
  • Guest Column
  • How to Be Featured as our Guest Columnist
  • We Were Featured
  • Survey Results
  • Classified Ads
  • Advertising Information
  • Subscribe/Unsubscribe information


Happy Spring to all you journal writers!

Running the web site and the newsletters has been richly rewarding in ways I could not have imagined. With the feedback I receive along with watching the subsciption numbers rise, I feel very satisfied.

I recently received an email from a reader named, Matt. He wrote: "Just wanted to say thanks for opening my mind up to think what I think without thinking. It has motivated me. I am a much fuller person letting my instincts help, both at work and home. Thanks again."

It brought a huge smile to my face. Not just because of the compliment but also because it came from a male. Now, don't misunderstand me. I save and cherish every single feedback I get regardless of gender or anthing else. But let's face it, when it comes to journaling, it's largely considered and marketed as a 'girl thing'. This is a huge pet peeve for this woman!

Check the net during holiday time and see how many places put journals on the suggested gift lists. I haven't seen one yet, except for one I wrote myself. Then there's television commercials. Have you seen those new electronic diaries - for girls? Try to find a book more suitable for a guy in the stores. Not an easy task. Sorry! My 17 year old son isn't into pink fluffy fake fur books.

I'm not entirely sure where it all started with the 'girl thing'. After all, famous men kept journals back in the dark ages. But as a girl growing up, it was a socially conditioned thing - guys don't keep diaries. Thank heavens for some amount of progress.

Expressing oneself is not always easy, especially if talking about emotions is something you were not encouraged to do growing up. Many faced this, male and female. But, the truth remains that men tended to get more of a taboo placed on them. What better way is there to begin this process than to journal? I have 3 guys in my house, my teen, my 9 year old and my husband. They all journal and find it very helpful.

The next time you have a gift to buy for a fellow, consider a journal. The more this is encouraged the more we all grow as individuals and the faster stereotypes and outdated social conditioning ends.

Till next month,



If you have something you want to advertise, Creative-Journal is the place. For the month of April, you can see your 5-line (60 characters per line) run in our newsletter for ONLY a DOLLAR!

Space is limited, so don't hesitate. Contact me at: to get your ad sceduled! Please note that we do not accept any Adult ads.

[The LATEST article in Creative-Journal's New Techniques Series!]
© 2001, Corinne Pratz

Understanding our own emotions and the reactions we have to various things is a journey and a half - perhaps one that takes a lifetime. This technique can give you a whole new insight into your feelings.

The key is to single out one emotion such as anger, happiness, envy, or whatever. Turn that emotion into 'a person'. Create an entire character that suits your feeling. Consider what the emotion looks like, what gender it is, what colors are involved. Give it a name if you like. Then consider the role it has in your life. What purpose does the emotion serve? What are the benefits of it? What are the downfalls? Consider how well you and the emotion interact. Do you feel comfortbale with the feeling? What kind of relationship do you have with it?

Start of with: "I am (your name)'s _________." Then let yourself just write.

Here's a part of one of mine for an example:

"I am Corinne's anger. I am vibrant and alive with oranges, reds and yellows, like fire. I can be as small as a pea or as enourmous as the greatest mountain. For many years, she often denied my existence. She saw me as the enemy and one that could destroy her and so she strived to keep me small and silent. But I am not one to be silent! Now she sees me as a trusted friend, at last. After all, I am the one who signalls to her that something isn't right for her. I let her know that her needs are not being met or that she is being violated in some way. I am the greatest of protectors for her and when she listens to me, things improve for her....."

There are so many emotions that can be explored in this way and the growth that occurs from exploring your feeling in this way can be incredible.

For a list of emotions (I brainstormed as many as I could think of), go to

Emotion List


I've decided to extend the deadline for March's contest. Why? Because there were only 2 entries! Come on, Journalers, let's hear your opinion.

Finish this sentence:
I think the presentation of personal journals as evidence in a court trial is ...

Keep your entry between 200-400 words maximum and send it to:

The winning narrative will be awarded with a Deluxe Set of Journal Prompt Cards from Creative-Journal!

Contest for this month closes April 25, 2001. The winning entry will be featured here for April's newsletter and on our site!

REVIEW: Website - The Center For Life Stories Preservation

If you have ever considered writing your memoirs or some family history, you've got to visit this site. What an incredible resource!

Everything from where to take your first ideas to the steps needed to make it happen are all here. There are ideas and categories to explore, complete with examples to read.And it's not just about the writing part. You'll find information on collecting pictures and researching facts. You can even find out how to get your work published.

Even if you haven't considered doing this yet, have a look. It's well worth the time!


Content - 5/5
Resourcefulness - 5/5
Navigation Ease - 5/5


Our site continues to grow, almost daily. We are now seeing visitors from new Countries and this has been terrific!

Some of the new highlights:

- Our TECHNIQUES section is continuously being added to. You will see more throughout April and if you hear of a technique that has worked for you, be sure to let me know!

- Several NEW ARTICLES have been added to the site and to the Library section. This has been reorganized to make it easier for you to find what you want.

- If you didn't know, we update our VISUAL PROMPTS section each and every week with 3 new images for you to explore.

- Results from our Polls and Surveys can be viewed in the SURVEY section.

What you will see in March:

- More techniques.

- More articles.

- More comments from you.

- More links

- More, More, MORE!

Be sure to let me know what you want to see there! Write to me at

Guest Column
© 2001, Rod Haynes

There are a number of issues memoir writers grapple with, including the complex relationship between human comedy and tragedy. The stories we once laughed at as they were told at the dining room table or at an intimate family reunion, take on a more somber meaning when they are in print, out in the public eye. They are "less safe" and somehow "more permanent." The written word is so final, so revealing, sometimes so threatening.

Memoir writing requires balancing honesty and fairness, leaving out significant portions of the writer's life that won't interest readers, while writing fine detail about specific events that will draw readers in. A memoir can be therapeutic, enlightening, and liberating for the writer. It's a selfish sort of thing. But it requires objectivity when it comes to deciding what stories simply don't fit.

Memoir writers who are not dedicated to truth telling are not entirely dedicated to memoir writing. Writing memoir occasionally hurts because life is sometimes painful. On the other hand, uncontrolled truth telling is not only dangerous, it is unfair, cruel, and inconsiderate. It also may be the result of sloppy fact-finding. And while loose writing might result in lawsuits, exercising too much discretion will result in a boring, uninspiring book. Balanced writing is therefore critical.

A successful memoir writer conveys a painful tale (if that is the intent) without coming off as a whining crybaby in a self-righteous search for validation. I find humor a much easier tool than tragedy to work with, even if the central subject is one of misfortune. If a reader sees the writer wallowing in self-pity, the impact of the story could be lost altogether. We all know life is hard. Get on with it.

When I joined a writers group near where I live I profited immensely from sharing ideas and writing strategies with the other members. Some memoir instructors shy away from offering specific resources to their students, but I think there are several superb "how to" books out there, as well as good web sites and magazine articles to refer to. They are listed on my web site:

A good editor whom you trust implicitly is invaluable. Developing well-written, snappy dialogue, conveying plenty of drama, building multi-dimensional characters, and, finally, employing the old "show don't tell" approach to memoir writing will help the writer minimize common literary errors. Happy writing!

About Our Guest Columnist:

Rod Haynes' first book, ROGUES ISLAND MEMOIR, was published on November 6, 2000. His editor is Robert Wolf, of Free River Press, Lansing, Iowa.
Visit his web site at for more information.


How to become a guest columnist - Write me with your ideas or send your column to

Articles need to be no more than 200-300 words and on a topic that appeals to journalers.


Janet Roberts from Site A Day wrote a glowing review about our site! Check it out at:

SuZann Brown, Journal Wizard at has added our site. This is a brand new site so be sure to check it out. And when you are there, Please stop by and rate us!
Rate Us

Our Daily Prompt for March 19th was listed on


Visit our new SURVEY section at:

Survey to read poll and survey results and to participate in our latest. Make your opinion and experience count!


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