The joy and woe of Morning Pages

IMG_0099I’m once again trying the activity of Morning Pages. Julia Cameron of The Artist’s Way suggests taking some time each morning to write three pages, in long land, to provide clarity, ease anxiety, and clear out the cobwebs.

This is a great idea, except I’m not a morning person. I don’t wake up with anxiety, or thoughts, or anything but morning grumpiness. The last thing I want to do is slog through the process of long hand to write three pages worth of blithering. Three pages can take me quite a bit of time that I could otherwise be writing something I enjoy.

But I’m doing it anyway because I want to improve my handwriting and hope to find some insight, clarity, or, (dare I dream?), realization of myself.

Tips to morning pages:

Pick a journal with pages that fit your size. Currently I’m using a large spiral notebook but realized on Day 2 of morning pages that this is a bit too much to try to write three pages each and every morning. I would suggest a small notebook with lines that fit the time and effort you will put into your pages.

Pick a quality pen. For me, I prefer the chunkier size pens to fit my hand better, but the quality of ink is also important. My choice is the Bic four-color ink pen. The ink flows well, and the size feels good.  Sometimes I switch to another color for a change of pace. You may prefer a gel pen, erasable pen, or just a lovely pen to use for your morning pages.

This is my pen of choice with four different inks to choose from and a thick barrel. You can find various colors, but this one has black, blue, red, and green.

A fountain pen= I never used one of these types of pen, but they are pretty. You can get very expensive (over $200) to this more affordable model.
Erasable gel pens. I’ve considered this type, in case of mistakes. Gel pens can make pages sticky, but they come in so many colors that are bright/clear.
LED Night writing pens. I love this idea- a light for your pen so you can write in a dark room!

Make Morning Pages a ritual. This can include making a cup of coffee or tea, lighting a candle or incense, even saying a little prayer (to  your writer’s muse) for inspiration.

Integrate the Freewriting or Pomodoro techniques. Freewriting is writing for 10-15 minutes without stopping. This includes no corrections, no formatting, and no grammar/punctuation concerns. You just write nonstop.

Pomodoro technique is using a timer of 25 minute increments with 5 minute breaks between to get things done.

Adjust accordingly. I don’t believe in things being ‘one-size-fits-all’. This means if Morning Pages becomes too grueling, it’s okay to stop. Remember the goal- clarity, insight, and for me, improving my longhand. If your goals are not being met, it is okay to adjust the activity or even stop. Do only one page, write for time instead of the number of pages, or find another medium of writing/

What do you think: Have you tried morning pages? Do you think you will try it? Post in comments below.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “The joy and woe of Morning Pages

  1. Pingback: Lazy Sunday #21 Vlog Time #76 | Paula Acton

  2. Pingback: Healing The Imagination - Marc Thomas Shaw

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