Jan 122012

When we write in journal form, we often write without an outline as the ideas come to mind.  We gather and mesh our ideas in a first draft.   The first writing often will record events.  With each subsequent visit to that draft and the drafts that follow, we realize more and more what else we could have said and how we could have said it better.  Fortunately, we can take a different set of thoughts into each reading.

With later rewritings, our first ideas spark further recollections and emotional responses, so we write emotional responses to events.  Some of us consciously or unconsciously avoid revealing emotional responses. For others, however, the emotional responses can take over and overshadow the important concrete images and details.  We need a mix of the concrete (to wrap our minds around) and the emotional (to touch our hearts) to make our writing interesting, engaging, and lingering—while keeping the reins on the emotional parts lest the writing become overly sentimental.

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