Hey, it's Autumn week again. I hosted this blog way back in July—nine whole months ago. Haven’t things changed since then? It just goes by so fast…and I’ve been busy! I’m sure you are too. So this week we’re going to work on getting one layout completed by tackling small chunks each day. Start to finish in a short amount of time. Each day I’ll give you instructions, examples, and a super-duper tip (exciting, I know), and at the end of the week we’ll see what you’ve all come up with. Here’s the breakdown:
Monday – journaling
Tuesday – photos
Wednesday – design
Thursday – giveaway!
Friday – finishing touches
Saturday – your layouts from the Flickr group
And one of these days I’m going to announce something I’m pretty darn excited about…anyone care to guess what it is?
So let’s get to it!
If you were around way back in July, you’ll remember that journaling is just about my favorite part of scrapbooking. I love stories. The story is where scrapbooking begins for me, and I hardly ever create scrapbook pages that have no journaling on them.
I majored in creative writing in college, and I write a lot. But writing can be hard, especially when you are staring at pictures and have no idea what to say about them. To make it a little easier, we are going to start with the "story" or journaling of the layout, and get to pictures tomorrow.
Your instructions for the day:
Think of a story from your life. It can be about you; it can be about your kids. It can be cute, funny, sad, whatever. It doesn’t have to be a “big” story – it can be very everyday. It can be recent or old. It doesn’t matter if you have pictures that go with it or not, and you don’t need to worry about pictures anyway because photos don’t come until tomorrow’s post. Check the clock; you’ve got three minutes to write the story down. Stop now and do it. And please forget about proper grammar and spelling and making it sound good and all that junk. Just write.
Got your story? Good. Now we’re going to make this story a little bit better. Here’s the super-duper tip for the day: good stories start in medias res. That’s Latin for “in the middle of things.” (Did you know I took Latin in college for my foreign language requirement? Got to love learning a dead language.) Anyway, what in medias res means is that interesting stories start with the action, right in the middle of it. Most scrapbook journaling doesn’t start with the action—it starts with setting the scene. Like this:
Scott was gone this week, so we didn’t watch LOST together Tuesday night like usual. Instead, I taped it and watched it Wednesday morning while James played trains on the floor next to me. He played pretty well, until there were only three minutes left and he decided to wander upstairs. I didn’t follow him, because I really needed to see those last three minutes. Of course, I paid for that later by spending twenty minutes trying to scrub pencil off of eight different walls!
This is a fun story that captures a couple things about my life right now: mainly that I love LOST and that my son is a hooligan. But it’s kind of boring, at least until you get to the last sentence. Since I wanted to start with the action, I crossed out the first half of the above paragraph, and then rewrote it so it turned out like this:
I’m fully aware that James is an active kid, but even I didn’t think he’d be able to cover eight different walls in pencil streaks in just three minutes. I probably should have followed him when he wandered up the stairs, but I really needed to watch the last three minutes of LOST. Turns out I paid a lot for those three minutes—it took me at least half an hour of scrubbing to clean the walls. (But I do really love LOST - so I guess it was worth it.)
This version does a much better job of grabbing your attention immediately, and it's easy to follow even though I left out some of the scene-setting info.
Now it’s your turn. Go back to your journaling and figure out where the action is. See how many lines you can cross out before you get to the interesting part. Then take five minutes and write it again. (You can fix your grammar and spelling this time around, too.)
Pretty easy, right? You have your story written, and I can guarantee you won't waste any time this week staring at photos and trying to come up with something to say about them. Meet me back here tomorrow, and leave me a comment with your guess as to what my big announcement might be...
I promised examples every day, and here they are: a couple of layouts complete with journaling that gets straight to the action. (click on them to see them bigger so you can read the journaling.) Cheers.