I HOPE you do. Just got confirmation from a writer on Twitter that he does too, and then I started thinking about my journal-carrying habits and wondering if it’s common among writers.
I guess I shouldn’t call them journals. Notebooks and memo apps work too. And it’s not like I’m logging my daily activities. I’m not climbing a mountain or in a war. What use is my daily life?
Rather, I log my ideas, little bits of dialogue, sentences, paragraphs, sometimes pages of narrative that I have to type up later. When I commit to a specific project, I have to mine through a handful of notebooks and journals to extract all the relevant notes. In the meantime, I re-encounter all those other ideas that are currently unrelated but still looking pretty cool on their own.
I think we as human beings have a moral obligation to put down on paper ideas we believe to be good.
What is good anyway? What does good mean? What exactly is a good idea? If you ask me, a good idea is an idea that the world either wants or needs, and turns out it just so happened to have issued from your thoughts. Creative types are conduits, of sorts. Ask a creative person where his/her/their ideas come from, and you’ll encounter a blubbering individual. Ideas emerge from the subconscious. They appear to us. We don’t mathematically deduce them. If that were the case, all the bestsellers would be written by A. Mazon, international bestselling algorithm and loving parent of packages delivered right to your door.
If you have a good idea, you better write it down. It’s not fair if you don’t. I might like it and I want to read it. If you weren’t going to write it down, why’d you have it to begin with? You don’t know that the world doesn’t require it. Your ideas might just be the right ideas.
Haters gonna hate, but if they write it down it means they agree with me.