Daily Inspiration for Journal Writing: Vivian Gornick

by Amber Lea Starfire on June 11, 2011

catnav-journaling-activePost #45 – Memoir Writing, Journaling – Amber Starfire
-

Journal writing is one of the more effective ways we have of reflecting on and making sense of the events and relationships in our lives. And memoir writing is, among other things, a more stylized and disciplined form of reflection.

Vivian Gornick

Vivian Gornick

In her wonderful book, The Situation and the Story: The Art of Personal Narrative, Vivan Gornick writes about why she thinks writers and readers in today’s culture have shifted their interest from the novel to memoir.

“A serious life, by definition, is a life one reflects on, a life one tries to make sense of and bear witness to. … Truth in a memoir is achieved not through a recital of actual events; it is achieved when the reader comes to believe that the writer is working hard to engage with the experience at hand. What happened to the writer is not what matters; what matters is the large sense that the writer is able to make of what happened.”

Freewrite in your journal using the following questions as writing prompts:

  • When you journal, what techniques do you use to encourage deeper reflection about your life?
    -
  • Do you feel that you’re working hard to engage with your experiences, or are you simply recording them?
    -
  • Do you agree with Gornick that making sense of what happens is more important than the events themselves?
    -
  • Why do you think that memoir has become such a popular genre?

_____________________________

For more about ways to use your journal, as well as writing tips and prompts, be sure to connect with Amber on Writing Through Life.

reflective journaling

Leave a Comment

Interviews Category Interviews Category Interviews Category Interviews Category Interviews Category Interviews Category Writing Prompts Category Writing Prompts Category Writing Prompts Category Writing Prompts Category Writing Prompts Category Writing Prompts Category StoryMap Category StoryMap Category StoryMap Category Writing and Healing Category Writing and Healing Category Writing and Healing Category Scrapmoir Category Scrapmoir Category Scrapmoir Category Book Business Category Book Business Category Book Business Category Memoir Journal Writing Category Memoir Journal Writing Category Memoir Journal Writing Category News Category News Category News Category