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Molly Childers : Recipe for a Sizzling Creative Journal

Recipe for a Sizzling Creative Journal

By Molly J. Anderson-Childers


  • One large blank journal with unlined pages and thick, high-quality paper
  • Pens, pencils, pastels, crayons, charcoal sticks
  • Watercolor paints, brushes, mug of water, and palette for mixing colors
  • Mod-Podge, small sponge-brush, and assorted found art objects for collage. (Stickers, shells, buttons, concert tickets, magazines and postcards to cut up, ribbon, and glitter are some of my favorite ingredients for a yummy collage!)
  • 2 C. Inspiration
  • 1 Tbsp. Time
  • 2 Gallons Creative Energy


Preheat with a brainstorming session. Incense, candles, good music, or a change of scene can all help you generate new ideas. Think about the types of projects you would like to do in this journal and keep a list of ideas in the back pages. If you are ever experiencing a blocked or stuck feeling, these ideas can inspire you. Combine all ingredients and heat to a boil, stirring occasionally. Allow the mixture to bubble over and make a huge mess! Serve hot with a side of creative writing, a collage salad, and mixed painting and drawing sorbets for a refreshing dessert.

Yield: Infinite, and limited only by the bounds of your imagination!

Recipe for Spicy Creative Writing


  • Passion and Pain, in equal measure
  • 1 C. Joy Abounding
  • Heartbreaks Galore, to taste
  • 1 Tbsp. Curiosity and Courage, well-blended
  • Two million tiny stories


Close your eyes. Visualize yourself, fifteen years from now. You are happy, healthy, and doing work which delights you. Picture every detail of your life; your home life, job, family and friends. Open your eyes. Write as fast as you can, without stopping, and describe your future self, living your wildest dreams. Write in the first person, and stay in the present tense. Mix well with colorful adjectives and original detail. Serve hot!

Yield: Will serve and satisfy an unlimited number of guests!

A Note from the Chef: We each contain all of these ingredients, no matter how deeply they are buried within. This scrumptious dish will actually help you to unearth the contents of your truest heart. Often, I do not know something is true until I have written it down, utterly surprising myself. To prepare the other varieties of creative writing presented here, use the same method: a visualization, followed by free-writing. This type of writing is most exciting and effective if it is done quickly, without crossing anything out or doubling back to check spelling and grammar. This allows you to separate creative writing from editing, and lets your ideas flow freely. You will surprise yourself with the endless variety of tastes and textures this recipe produces!

Inspiring Ideas:

  • Write a letter to your Muse, then craft a response and mail it to yourself.
  • Describe yourself in 100 words or less, creating a brief verbal self-portrait.
  • Write about everything you are, and everything you are not.
  • Write a postcard to your seven-year-old self.
  • Send yourself a love letter or a Valentine.

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