Last Fall I took a Memoir writing class at BYU. At the beginning of the semester, we were given the assignment to start a blog and write for at least 8 minutes a day, at least 5 days a week. The thought of writing things others could read really scared me. I’d never written on a blog before or put my words out in the public. About the same time that class started, I started teaching a new Family History class where I found myself challenging my students to write in their journals at least 8 minutes each day. I watched fear in many of their faces too. I determined to do what I asked of them on this blog.
This is my 100th entry. Last night in the blog stats it reported there have been more than 5000 views on this blog! All I can say to that is “Holy Cow!” The whole thing is astonishing to me. Somebody is reading these words and that makes me feel happy.
As I look back on the various thoughts and impressions that have come to me, and see them captured on (paper), I’m thrilled these words have not been lost or forgotten. They’ve been preserved and shared. What a difference 8 minutes a day can make in telling our stories. I’m grateful for the assignment and happy to have 100 entries now, captured and saved. I’m also very happy some of you have joined me in this process. Even though I don’t know most of you, I feel surrounded by friends.
In my lesson on Journal Writing, I tell my students a wise person once said, “No life is ever truly lost, but we are the poorer who have no record of it.” I hope each of you reading this will take the challenge to write down your thoughts and impressions. They will be priceless to your families, your children and your posterity some day.
Here is one of my favorite poems by Frederick G. Williams IV, an incentive for me to continue writing my fingers to the bone:
From those who wrote in shrouded days of yore
Some books remain, through which the silent pen
Affords to creatures now and evermore
A glimpse into the hearts of men.
Yet countless thoughts and deeds by men conceived
That once were known, are now forgot’ and passed.
This lesson we should learn that thoughts received,
Except some way preserved, will never last.
For hist’ry isn’t made or lived, but kept.
And till the deeds to paper are transferred
That man may yet survive when he hath slept,
On earth, at least, ‘tis though they ne’er occurred.
To live and not have written, save one’s name,
Or never to have lived, is much the same.
Thanks to each of you who have dropped in from time to time. Please join my celebration and leave a comment below if you like. I’d be happy to get to know you better.