With thanks to my first completed journal

The first journal I filled is two-thirds disjointed mess. I started it in late 2011 as a notebook for my story/novel ideas, and for the first 200 pages that’s more or less what it is, with ideas and passages that ended up in The Imaginary Revolution or the Myke Phoenix novelettes I dashed off in 2014.

Then, on April 15, 2015, like turning on a light switch, I started filling the rest of the pages with what I dubbed “fragments of thought and bursts of creativity,” nearly every day, and now 15 journals and six years along, it is a habit, the main source of my blog posts and four-plus books.

After I completed the last page, I used the bookmark string that most journals have to mark the page where I wrote what I used for yesterday’s blog post; it was something I wrote that June after a short reminisce of the 16-hour drive to my mom’s last goodbye, which in itself is a better piece than I remember writing. I will have to share that someday, too.

I’m not sure what convergence of events sparked a sudden habit to life, but for the next few days I’m going to share some of those first bursts, starting with this, which I wrote on the second-to-last day, on the 398th page of a 400-page journal:

“On behalf of the entire staff and management, I’d like to take this moment to thank this book for presenting itself, with hundreds of blank pages to fill. It’s been a long journey, but we have nearly reached the last page. When the pen started scratching at these pages, there was no Imaginary Revolution, no new Myke Phoenix story, no home on the 3.3-acre plot at the county line. There was a commitment to fill the pages, but we had started down that track so many times before, only to leave blank pages mocking us through the years: ‘Remember me? I was the project with such promise, but you had other things to do and now it’s decades later. Nyah, nyah.’

“Nothing to do about that, but finally it was now. and now. and now. And now is the time to write and keep writing. Do and keep doing. Love and keep loving.”

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