Keeping track of your reads, and the books you want to read, can be frustrating. Though we all promise ourselves that we’ll read more books this year, will finally finish that book we started two years ago, and so on, sometimes we need a little push to actually do so. Journaling can be a bookworm’s best friend, as it gives you a creative source to write down and track your bookish thoughts, habits, and goals.
Here are ten inspiring bujo bookish pages to keep track of your reads this year!
At New York City’s most-visited museum, you will experience over 5,000 years of art from around the world. Now you don’t even have to travel to the Upper East Side to get inspired because the Met offers an online database of over 1,500 titles of mostly art books, online publications, bulletins, and journals from the last five decades for you to enjoy for free.
Image Via the Metropolitan Museum of Art
Met Publications is the name of the website in which you can indulge in reading all those art books you cannot afford, sieve through journals written by those at the top of their fields, and enjoy the aesthetically pleasing interface complete with a detailed search engine and links to categories such as ‘Recently Published,’ ‘Favourite Titles,’ ‘Books With Full Text Online,’ and ‘Notable Exhibition Catalogues.’
Image Via Pinterest
What’s really cool is that readers can locate works of art from the Met’s collection that feature in every book recorded in the last 60 years. Users now have access to out-of-print publications and can browse through staff-chosen lists!
Flannery O’Connor is one of the most canonical American short story writers, if not the most. English majors across the US read her works in awe. Whether it’s ‘A Good Man Is Hard to Find’, ‘Everything That Rises Must Converge’, or one of her many essays, O’Connor’s work has helped shape young minds for generations. And now, thanks to the quarterly journal Image, we’ll now get a look at O’Connor’s young mind.
Image Via Image
O’Connor’s journal will be released in Image’s 94th issue, which will ship in November. The journal, which O’Connor titled “Higher Mathematics”, was written when she was eighteen years old. She covers all the topics you’d expect of a young person: her relationship with her mother, her college classes, etc. However, the sharp eye O’Connor had for social paradoxes, and her understated wit are on display as well.
What’s perhaps most inspiring and infectious (two words not usually associated with O’Connor) about this journal is her anxiety over her career. She’s conflicted. She understands and is often elated by her writing abilities. However, she’s extremely anxious nothing will come of her literary ambitions. As evidenced by the journal itself, O’Connor always had words that needed to be shared. Imagine the uncertainty she felt not knowing whether or not she’d be read.
Image has provided a brief excerpt from the journal which you can read here:
Jan. 11, ’44. If I should begin to feel sorry for myself—however erroneously—I could easily move myself to a liquid-eyed condition, and that would be disastrous. I have such an affection for myself. It is second only to the one I have for Regina [her mother]. No one else approaches it. I realize that joyfully just now. If I loved anyone as much or more than myself and he were to leave, I would be too unhappy to want myself to advance; as it is, I look forward to many profitable hours. I have so much to do that it scares me.
If you are in need of O’Connor’s words, you can order it here. A good man may be hard to find, but Image just made it a lot easier to find a good journal.
Sometimes I find myself just living by the same old routine. I get so caught up that I sort of forget to take in all the small pieces that make up the week. We’ve all been there right?
For my birthday a few months ago one of my best friends since elementary school bought me a gift that would change my outlook on everyday life. She was kind enough to give me: a gift card to my favorite clothing store (gotta have those new boots), a bottle of wine (didn’t share it), and a Q&A a Day: 5-Year Journal…wait, what?
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I write in it every day, but over the course of five years? It took me a second to understand, then she explained that every page contains one question, just one! Listed after it are five bullets, each with a couple of lines. Wherever you start, whatever year you start, write it down and fill in your answer or continue the thought based on how you feel that very day…in that very moment! It’s kind of like your own time capsule. How perfect is that?
Image Via Pinterest
Thankfully, New Years was right around the corner. My chance to start fresh was right in the palm of my hand, along with my ballpoint pen. Soon enough I was making resolutions only to toss them to the wind, but I did begin journaling. The first of five years. I was ready.
I had a designated time right before going to sleep: first my Q&A journal, then my regular journal for writing up whatever I wanted: poetry, prose, endless thoughts, etc. However, I found that questions like “Write the first sentence of your autobiography” or “If you could have a superpower just for today, what would it be?” have helped me in many ways. Not only has it made me think more before I write, but it’s changed the way I look at the world.
Believe it or not, writing out two or three sentences to answer a simple question can actually change your whole mindset before the day even begins.
Here are a couple questions and my answers that I’ve written up since January. Please don’t judge:
Q: What makes a good enemy?
A: Cool question. Someone that’s always cool and calm. Rude, but not tacky. They make you want to do better and work harder than them. Someone who keeps it on the down low, but will say it to your face…
Q: Should you trust your instincts?
A: YES!!! Absolutely! Always, just go with your gut. You know it best and 9.9/10 times you’re right.
Q: What are the top songs on your recently played list?
A: Something with old rock probably. The Eagles perhaps.
Q: _______ is perfect.
A: Nothing! But if it’s something or someone important, you love it anyway.
Q: Who do you want to know better?
A: Someone I’ve never met. My mom when she was younger.
Q: Did you kiss someone today?
A: Yes… My dog… And my parents and grandma.
Q: Write down the cure for a broken heart.
A: Doing things for yourself, learning something new, long talks with friends, frozen yogurt, margaritas, alone time, writing, singing, crying it out, and loving yourself.
If you are even the slightest bit inspired by these questions and my ridiculous answers, then you may enjoy your very own Q&A journal. It gives you a moment to stop and look around at your life. See the magic in spending Friday night at home with some pizza and your family, feel the buzz of stepping into the city with your best friend, welcome solitude and the time it gives you to watch the sunrise before everyone wakes up.
These questions are here because we have to realize something is given to us each day. Good, bad, or otherwise, it’s there for our taking. We just have to be wise enough to look for it.
Last Sunday, September 17th, countless authors, publishers, poets, and publications descended upon Brooklyn Heights for the annual Brooklyn Book Festival, featuring stalls, discussion panels, and readings.
Brooklyn Book Festival / Image Via Brownstoner
It can seem overwhelming when you consider (or see with your own eyes) the sheer number of both writers trying to get their start, and of journals and magazines looking for submissions. We want to make it a little easier, so we’ve rounded up some of the best literary journals present at the festival and where you can find them. Even if you’re less about writing and more about reading, all of these journal publish both online and in hardcopy. They all feature amazing new writing from around the world!
Hailed as ‘beautiful, compelling, irresistible’ by Pulitzer Prize winner Junot Diaz, this stunning publication features fiction, non-fiction, and poetry. Diaz added ‘Slice will knock you right out. In the best way possible.’ The submission window opens again October 1st.
Many amazing writers have had their work appear in Tin House, including Dorothy Allison, Stephen King, Miranda July, Richard Ford, Alice Munro, Pablo Neruda, Sharon Olds, Donna Tartt…the list goes on and on…and on. But don’t let that deter you! You too could be among the greats. Tin House often runs themed issues and are accepting submissions now for their beautiful online and print journal under the theme ‘Candy.’
A Public Space is an independent magazine of literature and culture founded in 2006. They partner with Grey Wolf Press to publish books by contributers and are accepting submissions from October 15th to April 15th. They publish both online and in glorious hardcopy.
One of the most respected fiction journals in the USA, ASF aims to publish ‘work by emerging and established voices: stories that dive into the wreck, that stretch the reader between recognition and surprise, that conjure a particular world with delicate expertise—stories that take a different way home.’ They publish triannually, and are open for submissions all year round.
Belladonna is a feminist avant-garde collective founded in 1999. Since then, they have published over 300 female writers with the aim of promoting writing by women. Join their mailing list for news of their next submission window!
Black Sun Lit are looking out for the little guy, aiming to introduce, promote, and support both emerging and experienced authors whose work has little representation—or minimal exposure—in a reading world largely governed by commercial publishing.
Electric Literature’s website states their mission is “to expand the influence of literature in popular culture by fostering lively and innovative literary conversations and making exceptional writing accessible to new audiences.” Electric Literature is “interested in [non-fiction] pieces that examine the intersection of the literary experience and other creative endeavors: film, fine art, music, video games, science, tech, architecture, etc.”