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Juicy Journals & Wild Words
Juicy Journals Wild Words Series : Introduction

Juicy Journals
& Wild Words

By Molly J. Anderson-Childers

In this exclusive series on Creativity Portal you'll be treated to articles, resources, and project ideas specific to creating juicy journals… Modeled after my own haphazard journals, it will be an eclectic mixture of introspective journaling and creative writing — stories, poetry, and excerpts from my first novel, Stealing Plums, as well as other literary works-in-progress.

In real-time, I'll share fantastic projects and prompts to help you create unique creative journals. What is a creative journal? Well you may ask. My vision of a creative journal is a huge blank sketchbook, a tabula rasa where I can let my creative juices flow freely… a big white page to fill with red-hot poetry and watercolor landscapes of Venus and found art collages and souvenirs and photos and little scraps of stories. Bulging at the seams, dripping blue paint and silvery glitter all over the floor — watch out, you've got inspiration all over your fancy red shoes! Better take them off and go barefoot instead.

We'll create journals of every stripe, size, shape and color. I have some exquisite projects in store for you — a dream journal, a writer's notebook, tiny travel-sized journals that fit in your pocket, journals to give away and journals just for you. I have so many ideas, and I'm so excited to share these projects and inspirations with you.

I'll also give you some ideas for fun word games, doodle starters, poetry and writing prompts, questions to ponder, and ideas for journal-based art projects to help keep your journals juicy and fresh.

October Afternoon Creative Journal by Molly J. Anderson-ChildersI'll also take you out on Inspiration Walks, asking you to take your journal outside the safe realm of your studio and brave the real world. Journaling and blogging at home is much different from writing in a funky little coffee-shop, or at a table at the local bakery eating an apricot scone, or out on a hiking trail in the woods. Sitting on a hot rock in the middle of the Mojave Desert as a raven flies overhead is a far cry from curling up in bed to write on a snowy morning (where I am currently writing this article, seeing as it's freezing outside), fat flakes drifting down and down and no end in sight. Even as I write these words, I see a snow shovel looming large in my future and long for that sun-warmed rock in the desert desolation, the hush of raven's wings. A journal can anchor you in the present, on a slow snowy morning; or it can send you soaring into a fantasy of summertime: wearing short shorts again, getting a sunburn, sweating it out on the trail instead of slaving away with a snow shovel.

I believe that everyone is an artist. I have said this before; I'll repeat it now. Everyone has a seed of creativity inside; whether you sing in the shower or doodle while you're on the phone, or just dream of writing a novel someday, there's something inside you that cries out to be expressed. A journal is the perfect place to plant that seed, and see what strange savage wildflowers blossom there. And for artists and other creative souls, a journal can be an immensely important tool. It can root you firmly in the here and now, minutiae and minor details of your daily life — a mood or a landscape, a place to stand. It can also give you wings; the freedom to fly away, explore, gain new insights and inspirations. A microscope turned inwards and trained upon your soul, is a powerful tool, a key to self-knowledge, expression, and healing. It can also help you to achieve your creative dreams in ways you never imagined possible. It is not a book, but a path of opals and moon glow, to lead you through the forest of thorns. Take off your shoes. Squirm your toes in the cool white sand, the luminescent jewels cool as tombstones, and follow me into the dark. Trust the path, trust this: the path of opals and bright silver blue moonlight will lead us through and into and all around, in a winding coiled snaky path, until at last we come to the still water at the center, a quiet pool reflecting the sky, a place where all questions may be answered.

Take off your shoes. Feel the cool silk of sand slip betwixt your toes… and follow me through the Blackthorn-trees. •

© Molly J. Anderson-Childers. All rights reserved.

Molly Anderson-Childers is a a highly creative writer and artist from Durango, Colorado. More »

2/25/08