Diary writing, perhaps, conjures up the image of a young girl, happily scribbling away some random thought about her life in a her handwritten journal.
Diaries are more than just a written record of random thoughts – they are an exercise in creativity. They are flexing the creative writing muscle.
But you already knew that.
You love to journal, or want to get started. You also live in the digital age. It is time to find out how to link this age-old practice with computer technology.
Virginia Wolfe, famous British author, said it best:
What sort of diary should I like mine to be? Something looseknit and yet not slovenly, so elastic that it will embrace anything, solemn, slight or beautiful that comes into my mind. I should like it to resemble some deep old desk, or capacious hold-all, in which one flings a mass of odds and ends without looking them through.
Has diary writing has been ripped apart, by distractions like social media, video games and TV?
You can see it that way,
you can understand that although people have these distractions, blogging has stepped forward as a digital diary, holding the diary writer's thoughts in cyberspace.
Blogging is saving the dying art of diary writing.
What if I told you that you can keep a diary online, by blogging? What if I also told you that it is possible to keep a diary online as a blog, that can also pay you to be a published writer? It not only possible, but with the right effort, it can be probable.
But first, let us look at how blogging is saving the art of diary writing.
1. Share as much as you want….
Blogging can share your thoughts and feelings to more people than ever before. If you are opinionated, keep an online journal. If you love to inspire people, keep an online journal. If you just want to vent, get into blogging. One of the greatest perks of blogging is that you can share your message with others and start a discussion. You can bring awareness to a topic you are passionate about. Blogs helps you share more than was every possible before.
2. Or share as little as you want.
Keep a journal online – but still maintain privacy. Depending on how public or private you want your thoughts, you can adjust your privacy settings.
3. Synching is easy with a blog.
With a paper and pencil journal, you can take it with you, but sometimes having that one extra piece of writing equipment makes it more difficult or inconvenient to journal. With a blog, you can simply carry a smartphone and download an app on your phone. This way, you can journal on the go.
4. Never lose your journal.
Losing a handwritten journal can be devastating. First of all, you lose ALL or your data. Second, you risk the chance of someone getting a hold of it. And third, it can be destroyed. Blogs are digital, stored in a server in cyberspace. You can download it, back it up and transfer it.
Digitalized diary writing is extra safeguard against losing your work.
5. You can easily use pictures in your digital diary writing.
If pictures are worth a thousand words, then a picture in your diary writing is worth even more. Diary writing with pictures before blogs meant that you had to print photos and paste them into your journal. The vast majority of journals are text only.
If you have a collection of photos, then it is scrapbooking.
Blogs can be a hybrid of diary writing and scrapbooking, because you can save photos, videos, sound bytes and more within your blog.
6. Transcribe old journal entries into digital form.
There are millions of journals out there, unread. Your childhood journals could be one of them. But there are other examples of journals that could use transcribing:
- Your mom's observations as she was growing up during the 1960s.
- Your grandfather's old journal entries from his time serving as a missionary.
- Love letters your uncle wrote to your aunt during the war.
- Records and notes kept by your great grandfather as he ran his business – in New York.
You could even translate documents by ancestors that lived in Europe, Asia, Africa or elsewhere…
You can scan documents and add them to your collection.
Old written records are no longer collecting dust – they are online and potentially accessible by anyone to whom you choose to make them accessible.
7. Remove barriers to consistent diary writing.
If you want to start keeping a journal on a consistent basis, then keeping a journal online is easier. You can schedule posts out, save drafts for new ideas and flesh them out later, or copy and paste ideas from outside sources.
You can also set up reminders to write, complete with topic ideas.
The cool thing about using a blog for diary writing is that you can transition smoothly from using the computer to writing. You don't have to hunt down your journal. You don't have to search high and low for a pen. It is all right there in front of you.
8. Easier to read.
I don't have perfect penmanship. I know a lot of people don't. Writing on a blog, even with typos, is far more legible than writing with a pen and paper.
Graphology is the study of penmanship to understand the psychological state and / or character of the writer. Your handwriting changes over time, as you age, go through major events. It can even change when you become ill or develop a chronic condition.
In an article for CBS news entitled, “Why Handwriting Changes as You Age,” Michelle Dresbold, who is a handwriting experts explains:
…some of the factors that may affect handwriting include your psychological state. If you are depressed, for instance, she said people will write in a downward angle. If one is happy, she said the end of sentences will slant up.
In other words, legible handwriting is temporary at best.
9. Blogging offers a rich array of diary writing methods.
Diary writing is genius in its simplicity – put pen to paper. However, blogging offers a vast array of journaling methods never before anticipated or used.
- Video – Bloggers nowadays can choose to journal via video. This kind of blogging is known as a vlog. Youube and Vimeo are the best examples.
- Photo Blogs – Mostly used by professional photographers, apps like Pinterest, Instagram, Flickr and Tumblr have made it easy for netizens to photoblog.
- Microblogs – If you use Facebook or Twitter, you microblog. Microblogs have short entries that are generally a couple of hundred words. For Twitter, it is 140 characters or less.
- Purpose journals – These are journals like dream diaries, weight loss journals, food journals, personal development logs, etc. The beauty of using online blogs is that there are apps and blogs that are specific to each type of journaling. For example, Myfitnesspal.com is diary writing for the healthy lifestyle. You can record exercise, food choices and connect with your friends and others for support.
- Creative diaries – These are diaries where you can turn your life or event into a story. Some blogs allow children to turn their thoughts and photos into comic books. Others can help you put together a virtual scrapbook. There are thousands of different types that you can use.
Here are some diary writing tools available online. If you want to get your children involved in blogging or journaling, there are some websites here for children as well.
Diary writing for Adults
Remembary – A personal diary app that aggregates online entries from social media, blogs, and digital photos into one handy place. It facilities the journaling process by offering tutorials, tips, and extra privacy options.
Penzu – One of the easiest online journals to use, Penzu is free.
Day One App – Mobile app that allows you to geo-tag and sync. Very simple, elegant interface. Free.
OmmWriter – A distraction-free writing app based in Barcelona, Spain. Pay what you feel it is worth to you.
Blogger – One of the first of its kind, Blogger is now owned by Google.
Live Journal – A journal that facilitates user interaction, this one is great if you want people to come visit your journal. You can also use privacy settings to restrict access certain posts.
Animoto and Magisto – Both take your photos, short video clips, and preselected music (by you) and turn it into an edited masterpiece. It looks like you spent hours editing a video, when it fact it only took minutes.
Journaling for Teens
Pixton – Makes online comics for those kids who love comics, but can't draw them.
Skrappy – An app that allows kids to create scrapbooks, journals, music, videos and more. $2.99 in iTunes.
Photo 365 – “Remember your year, one photo at a time.” Can also upload multiple photos per day and share on social media. $1.99 on iTunes.
Journaling for School Age Children
iDiary for Kids – Great as a starter journaling app for kids 5 and up, children can write, draw, and color in their app. They can search for past entries and upload photos. $1.99 on iTunes.
10. Easy to search past posts.
And last, but not least, when you have a regular paper journal, it can be difficult to go back and find journal entries that you have written. With blogging and online journaling, you can easily do a search with a couple of words and find the exact journal that you found.
5 Ways You Can Profit From Your Blogging and Journaling
Now that you have a ton of ideas on how to create an online journal, why not make some extra money? People do it everyday. I'm not talking about making money off of your private thoughts, but taking something that you like to write about, create a public blog about it, and create a side income. If you want to learn more about making money diary writing and other methods of earning money online, check this out.
Interested? Keep reading.
1. Banners and ads.
The easiest and most direct way to make money off of your blog is to put up advertising. You can have people pay you to put banners on your site. Or you can sign up for a Google Adwords account and get paid per impression.
2. Affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is promoting a product, digital or physical, and then getting paid a commission for every sale made through your link. If your blog or journal is about a specific item or topic, you can place affiliate links throughout your text. Amazon is one of top websites for affiliate marketing. You can link to anything from electronics to books.
3. Create your own product and sell it on your blog.
If you like to blog about healthy eating, as an example, you can create a digital cookbook, complete with pictures and graphics, and sell it on your site. You can outsource your book writing and book formatting. You can sell it as a digital product, which means you can create it once, make it downloadable to buyers, and sell it over and over.
4. Brand yourself.
If you have a service you can perform, you can create a blog about that service. If you are a dog trainer, you can create a blog with your best dog training tips. You can then offer your services or even combine number 3 – sell an ebook.
5. Sell physical products.
If you have an eBay, Etsy or Amazon store where you sell products, you can create a blog around your products and use the blog to sell them. You can write articles about your things, create stories around them and get people interested. It can be a lot of work, but also a lot of fun.
There you have it! I have given you the rundown of how blogging is saving the dying art of diary writing.
Hopefully, I have opened up your mind to thinking outside the box when it comes to diary writing – you can see how you can write, take photos, shoot videos, create scrapbooks and journal about a specific topic, all for free or very low cost, from your computer or your phone.
I have also shown you some money-making opportunities. I trust you now have an excellent place to start your own creative endeavors using the power of blogging. Have fun!
David Book · February 20, 2015 at 9:46 am
I think we are seeing a comeback of the storytelling narrative in mainstream communication today. I think it is awesome that we can now turn the storytelling from our diaries and journals into digital blogs that will last a lifetime or more. The coolest part is that it is possible to get paid to do it all!
Thanks for the post.
Lawrence Tam · February 20, 2015 at 3:12 pm
writing it on a digital format (even privately) is a good first step to keeping that alive
Sheena · February 16, 2015 at 10:18 pm
these are all great tips lawrence, thanks for sharing this
Juan · December 16, 2014 at 10:11 am
Thanks for posting. For 2015 I want to launch my first Internet business around physical products with focus on Amazon. I think your idea of a blogging component as part of the online platform is a great idea. Can you list out your preferred blog platform and plugins to use for a top notch, kick ass blog site with all the right features to write about, promote, exchange ideas, forum like, community place to drive traffic to my Amazon listings?
Lawrence Tam · February 16, 2015 at 4:04 pm
there are a ton of ways to go about it…
depending on your experience … amazon I’ve sold for only needed a couple plugins but it’s all preference.
I juggle between a couple of them so I can’t say “here is the list” as I change them from time to time.
Make sure to get an seo plug in like “yoast”
Alecia Stringer · December 15, 2014 at 10:29 pm
Great ideas and resources. Teach them young and they thrive bigger than you think! Thanks.
Carol Makowski · December 15, 2014 at 2:08 pm
Really enjoyed this blog. Diary-type writing, in my opinion, is important to exercise one’s imagination and creativity. Also is an opportunity to connect more – with oneself and with others.
Lawrence Tam · December 15, 2014 at 3:10 pm
thanks for reading