Welcome to International Fake Journal Month 2013!

What is IFJM?
Please read the page "What Is IFJM" for details.
Learn the difference between Faux, Fake, and Fake Historical Journals.

2019 IFJM Celebration
IFJM has been suspended indefinitely. Please read the pinned post about this below.

Participants who Post Their Journals
A list of 2018 participants who are posting their fake journals this year will appear near the top of the right side bar of this blog around April 6. Lists of participants who posted their pages in 2010 through 2017 appear lower in the same column. Please pay them a visit and check out their fake journals.

View a Couple of Roz's Past Fake Journals
Roz's 2009 fake journal takes place in an alternate Twin Cites, where disease has killed the human and bird populations. (It ends up being an upbeat tale of friendship.) Watch a video flip through of Roz's 2009 fake journal here.

Read an explanation of Roz's insanely complex 2011 fake journal.

Tips on Keeping a Fake Journal
Click on "tips" in the category cloud.

Remember, "Life's so short, why live only one?"

Thursday, April 12, 2012

April 5 in Roz's 2012 Fake Journal—And Distancing Yourself from Your Character

Above: April 5 in the 2012 fake Journal. Click on the image to view an enlargement. Read below for details.

This is the April 5 entry in my 2012 fake journal. A transcript of the text follows. The journal is a 7 x 10 inch handmade journal containing Nideggen paper. The pen used is a Preppy Fountain Pen. The pencil used in the drawing is a Faber-Castell Albrecht Dürer Watersoluble Colored Pencil and the sky is rendered with gouache.

>Edward Dolwich, "The Forger's Spell."
So primed are we to see what we want to see (and to reject what runs counter to our hopes and expectations) that psychologists and economists have coined an entire vocabulary to describe the ways we mislead ourselves. "Confirmation bias" is the broad heading. The idea is that we tell ourselves we are making decisions based on the evidence, though in fact we skew the results by grabbing up welcome news without a second glance while subjecting unpleasant facts to endless testing. 
This form of self-deception pops up in the most ordinary circumstances and in the most momentous. When the number on our bathroom scale is the one we hoped to see, the psychologist Daniel Gilbert points out, we happily hurry off to get dressed. When it brings dismaying news, we step off and try again; we dry off even more thoroughly; we see if perhaps we can do better by standing at a different spot on the scale. On the battlefield, generals respond to good news and bad news in much the same way. (p. 224-226, Harper Perennial 2008)
[Image caption] April 5, 2012 1:55 p. window #12 outside the door looking southeast. 

Today I'd also like to make a little point about distancing yourself from your character. I've written about this before in tips, but it occurred to me that I didn't point out what was going on in regards to handwriting in this year's journal.

I always try to write in a way that is somewhat different from my regular handwriting. I find that this slows my brain down just a bit and allows me to stay in character more easily.

Sometimes I do this by writing with a tool I'm might sketch with but don't write with (dip pen in 2009 for instance) and I will force myself to speed up—and write in a messier fashion if it's appropriate for the character or the character's situation.

This year I chose to write with a Preppy Fountain Pen and since I use them a lot in my regular life I experimented with different ways to write with one before I started my fake journal on April 1.

I printed neatly, wrote big circling, loopy letters, and even tried a backward slopping script. What worked for me was to use my regular cursive handwriting, slow down the pace, minimize the x-height and stretch out the letters. That's not how I would normally write. It feels "right" for this character because it is readable after a fashion, small and detailed. I do have to keep reminding myself to slow down and write deliberately!

If you are having trouble getting into your character's mind consider the handwriting. We are all very individual in our handwriting styles.

What if your character suffered an injury and had to write with his or her non-dominant hand?

There are lots of ways you can go.


Parabolic Muse said...

what's a 'cloud' ? I need to read the tips! I've already seen two fake journals and that's just accidentally.
Oh, the first two weeks of April, I hardly knew ye.

journalrat said...

Parabolic Muse, a "category cloud" is the list of categories you find on every blog but on some blogs, like this one, the list is done as a "cloud" which means it isn't a list with each item on one line, but all the items run together.

On this blog you'll find the category cloud called "Find Related Posts" in the right hand column, below the blog archive. If you skim through the topics in the cloud you'll find "tips."

I hope you consider joining us!!!