Journal: 365+ Writing Prompts, Ideas and Quotes to Cultivate Joy and Well-Being (Book Review)

Journal 365If you’re hanging out here on Journal For You, you’re probably already keeping a journal and know that journaling is therapeutic and beneficial to your health, as well as a lot of fun!

The downside to regular – perhaps even daily – journaling, is that sometimes you sit down with your journal and…

Nothing. Happens.

Your mind is wiped. You stare at the blank page and absolutely nothing comes. It seems as if your well of inspiration has run dry.

Fortunately, a great book by Judy Shafarman can help you get back into your journaling practice.

That book – Journal: 365+ Writing Prompts, Ideas and Quotes to Cultivate Joy and Well-Being – offers almost 400 journaling prompts, along with thought-provoking quotations that will certainly help you “prime the pump” and get writing again.

In the book’s Introduction, Judy talks about all the benefits and value of journaling, and provides lots of great suggestions for daily writing practices.

Of all the journaling “prompt”-type books I’ve read and used over the years, I found Journal: 365+ to be quite unique. There are so many quotes I’ve never seen used in a prompt book before – and I’ve read a lot of them!

Some are long. Some are short. All are thought-provoking, especially when paired with a prompt.

A few examples:

September 14th:

“Just as a cautious businessman avoids investing all his capital in one concern, so wisdom would probably admonish us also not to anticipate all our happiness from one quarter alone.” – Sigmund Freud

Writing: Lately I’ve been neglecting… maybe now is the time to do something about it.

July 12th:

“The one unchangeable certainty is that nothing is unchangeable or certain.” – John F. Kennedy

Writing: What would I change if I were the mayor of my town or leader of my country?

December 3rd:

“The happiness of most people is not ruined by great catastrophes or fatal errors, but by the repetition of slowly destructive little things.” – Ernest Dimnet

Writing: What more in my life can I delegate to others? What can I eject from my daily doings?

I found all the entries to be quite engaging. In fact, it’s been noted that many of the ideas in this book would even be welcome as dinner table discussion material along with family or friends, and I couldn’t agree more!

In addition to the daily quotes and prompts, the section When You’ve Got The Muse, provides an additional 25 writing prompts for you to use when “you want a substitute or feel a bit freer, more whimsical or creative.”

The book also includes two bonus appendices:

The first – Folk Wisdom – is a great listing of seventeen contradictory bits of folk wisdom, or sayings, that you can choose to write about.

For example – consider the contradictory statements “Haste Makes Waste” and “He Who Hesitates Is Lost.”

Which is right? Both? Neither? Why or why not? Writing about these sayings is a great way to get to know your own personal belief system.

Writers on Writing – the second appendix – is a selection of quotes by famous writers on the subject of writing. Listed in alphabetical order by author’s name, you’ll certainly find some good quotes you haven’t seen before and that will make you think about your own writing/journaling practice.

Journal 365Obviously, I’m recommending that you purchase Journal: 365+ Writing Prompts, Ideas and Quotes to Cultivate Joy and Well-Being!

It comes in both paperback and Kindle versions. If you want to use this book alone for your daily journaling, I would recommend you get the paperback version. You can write in it, doodle in the margins, add stickers, and personalize it in any way you fancy.

If you make and use your own journals and/or draw inspiration from multiple sources, then you can’t go wrong with the Kindle version!

About The Author

Judy Shafarman is a lifelong teacher who has taught at 4 universities, colleges, private and public institutions, companies, and numerous residences. She has taught English as a foreign language,technical writing, and topics in well-being and teacher training courses to people of all ages from 6 continents. She has a B.A. in English from Rutgers University and an M.A. in Education from The University of Texas at Austin

Judy has also compiled two additional and distinct books for journal-writers – My Book Of Appreciation and My Book Of Grief And Loss. I’ll be reviewing both those books in the next month or so!

Have questions or comments about the book, or journaling in general? You can contact Judy directly at with your ideas and letters about your journal practice.

Did you know that September 22nd is “Dear Diary Day?” Learn more about this and other “creative holidays” at Creativity For Life!

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3 thoughts on “Journal: 365+ Writing Prompts, Ideas and Quotes to Cultivate Joy and Well-Being (Book Review)

  1. Deb, thanks for the reminder about this great book resource. I was fortunate enough to have a conversation with the author, a wonderfully cheerful person who understands both joy and grief, Judy Shafarman. You can listen right here for more stories and insights: I appreciate your collection of works here and welcome you to come have a visit on JournalTalk yourself sometime!

    The link to the interview with Judy Shafarman about her book:

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