JOURNALING · Writing

Journal Prompts for After Watching a Movie

Journal Prompts for After Watching a Movie

  1. What movie did you screen?
  2. Summarize the plot.
  3. What would you change about the plot?
  4. Why did you watch that movie?
  5. Where were you?
  6. Who was with you?
  7. Were there snacks involved? Which?
  8. Do you have a favorite actor in this film? Who?
  9. What would you change about the casting?
  10. If this is an old film, how would you re-cast it with actors working today?
  11. If this is a new film, how would you re-cast it with actors from the past?
  12. If it is a film from the early 20th century, compare it with the radio version of the film.
  13. Is this film up to the usual standards of this actor/ director/ writer/ studio/franchise? Why?
  14. How was the soundtrack? How was the score?
  15. Did you like the film? Why? Why not?
  16. Does this movie remind you of a different one?
  17. Is this a reboot, remake, sequel, pre-quel? How does it compare to the original?
  18. If this film is part of a series, rank each one.
  19. If this film is part of a series, what do you think is misunderstood about the series or its fans? What do you think is great about the series or its fans? What do you think could be better about this series?
  20. If you watched it in the theater, do you plan to purchase a copy later? Why? Why not?
  21. Discuss the poster art/ cover art for this film.
  22. Discuss the advertising for this film. Did it intrigue you?
  23. Is there memorabilia accompanying this film? Do you plan to purchase any? Why?

 

All the best,

Deborah

JOURNALING

Journal Prompts for After a Play or Musical

Have you attended a play or stage musical recently? Here are a few journal prompts to get you started writing about your experience.

Journal Prompts for After a Play or Musical

  1. Which Play/Musical did you attend?
  2. Where was the venue?
  3. What is interesting about the venue?
  4. Why did you attend this play?
  5. Who attended with you?
  6. When did you first hear of this production?
  7. Do you know people in the play (or behind the scenes) by name? List them and discuss why they interest you.
  8. Describe the plot.
  9. Does the plot (or do the characters) remind you of a different play?
  10. Does the plot (or do the characters) remind you of a different form of art or different discipline in life? E.g. The two lead characters in The Taming of the Shrew remind me of two boxers going in for the kill.
  11. Which actor caught your attention the most? Why?
  12. Which character surprised you the most?
  13. Which character is your favorite? Why?
  14. How were you dressed?
  15. Attach a photo of the evening (such as a selfie taken in the lobby or a picture of the program) and discuss it.
  16. Where did you go after the play? Why?
  17. What play/musical do you plan to attend next? Why?

All the best,

Deborah

JOURNALING

Journaling Q & A Part 1

Today I answer 3 frequently asked questions about journaling.

Question 1

I’m worried about someone reading my journals after I die. My family will think I’m weird if they read what I write. What can I do?

Answer 1

You are not alone. Many people ask that same thing. Here are a few options you might try.

  1. Include your journals in your last will and testament as soon as possible. This week or today. Your executor will distribute or destroy your journals as you will. Tell your executor where you keep your original will and where you keep your journals.
  2. Put a disclaimer in or on all of your journals or on the container or shelf that houses your treasure. The disclaimer can say that these words are written by an imperfect person. Something like, “Read these journals at your own risk.”
  3. Put your journals in a time capsule that is not to be opened until 50 years after your death. In that way, most of the people that you’re worried will read your journals might not be around to read them.
  4. You may cut out the parts that you think are the most weird or incendiary. Of course, you never know what anyone will find offensive.
  5. If you do not plan to re-read your journals, you might consider destroying them yourself now. Of course, that is a personal decision that I cannot make for you, but it’s certainly an option. Be aware that you might end up longing for the content that was lost.
  6. You can always donate your journals to The Great Dairy Project  – a diary preservation society. They understand discretion and wait until your diary is no longer contemporary in order to bring its value to the public.
  7. You can also find a way not to let it worry you. Visit a counselor or therapist who might be able to help you alleviate this anxiety.

 Question 2

Many people suggest using a leather journal. I’ve bought a leather journal, but l do not feel worthy to use it. Now I feel guilty for wasting money. Can you help me force myself to just start anyway?

Answer 2

A journal of any kind is a tool that you use to suit your purpose. It is there to serve you.

Clearly, the leather journal is not serving your purpose – that is, to help you write. It is now clutter in your house. Get rid of it, return it, resell it, give it away.

Then, use a journal with which you do feel comfortable. If you need to do so, use whatever you usually write on – graph paper, notebook paper,  printer paper, stationary- until you develop the habit of writing. I have seen journals on stenographer pads. These are all much less expensive than a leather journal. The point is to start writing. Your tools should not inhibit you.

Perhaps your first entry can be about why you feel unworthy of a more expensive writing supply.

Question 3

My father read my journal when I was 17. I felt betrayed. I have never written in one since. I am now 37 and I would like to reclaim the journal-writing habit. What would you suggest?

Answer 3

When you read a question like this your heart goes out to the person. This is, unfortunately, a common problem in many households. Your trust and privacy have been violated; you are associating that with journaling. It makes sense that you would hesitate starting the habit of writing again.

To develop a habit of writing, I would suggest the CUE, ROUTINE, REWARD method. You will spend less time hesitating and debating whether to write and you’ll spend more time actually writing.

Establish a CUE, a signal, such as an alarm on your phone,  that reminds you to write. Then engage in the ROUTINE, write in the journal. If you need to, just write the date and only one sentence, such as “It was been 20 years since I’ve written in a journal.” Close the journal, put it away.

Then REWARD yourself. It can be an intrinsic reward, such as savoring the accomplishment. It can be an extrinsic reward, such as finally getting around to reading some books on your shelf. Whatever you enjoy.

Eventually, merely engaging with the cue or signal induces you to crave the routine and the reward. Writing will become associated with pleasure. It will become a habit.

All the best,

Deborah

For more journal writing tips, click here.

JOURNALING · PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT

Journal Prompts for Writing about Childhood

Hi! It’s Deborah.

I’m part of a journal writing group on Facebook. One of the members mentioned that he has used old family photos as journal prompts. You start writing whatever the photo brings to mind and get a glimpse into your own mind, or record an old memory. What a great idea!  Especially if you add a copy of the photo on the journal page.

Do you need journal prompts for writing about your childhood? Here are few to get you started:

  1. What is your earliest memory? [The other year, I read What Your Childhood Memories Say about You . . . and What You Can Do about It” by Dr. Kevin Leman. In it, the author posits that since the brain always remembers what happens to you, the memory that you subconsciously select as your earliest one reveals your true perspective on life.]
  2. What is one thing that you enjoyed doing as a child?
  3. Did you have pets as a child? Which was your favorite? Why?
  4. Choose a piece of childhood memorabilia. What stories does it bring to mind? How did it come into your possession?
  5. Where did you attend school? Did you enjoy it? Why? Why not?
  6. What did imagine you would do as an adult? Did you do it? Why? Why not?
  7. What foods did you enjoy as a child? Which ones did you dislike? Do you still enjoy/dislike them? Why?
  8. Write about your parents. What are their names? What are their occupations? How would you describe your childhood relationship to them? How does that compare with your adult relationship with them?
  9. Were your parents great with handling money? Why? Why not? Did you learn anything from the way they handled finances in your childhood?
  10. List 2 people other than your parents who stand prominent in your childhood memory. Who were they? What relation were they to you? Did you enjoy that relationship? Why? Why not?
  11. What were the family traditions? Have you changed any of them in your adult life? Would you like to change the traditions? Why?
  12. If you’re the letter writing type, write a letter to someone from your childhood in your journal. (You do not need to send it. This is simply a device to help you explore your past.)
  13. How is your spouse’s childhood similar to yours? Or does it differ? How have you dealt with this?
  14. What childhood would you like to provide for your children (or future children)?

That might hold you for a fortnight (or longer if you’d rather not write in your journal every day).

Peace be with you,

Deborah