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Journaling, Round-Robin Style

Updated on June 24, 2016

Take One Down, Pass It Around!

If you have a group of close, reliable friends, a round-robin friendship journal is a fun project which will leave each participant with a keepsake to cherish. I emphasize the word "reliable" right up front because if one person drops the ball, the whole group gets out of whack and someone could very well lose her journal altogether. Having said that, this truly is a fun project when everyone cooperates.

Let's presume that, say, a small group of friends agrees to participate. Here are some examples of how they might proceed:

1. Each person obtains a journal. It's best not to spend a lot of money and, if you're exchanging the journals by postal mail, consider the weight and how much postage will run, especially as photos, etc., are added by folks.

2. Because journals vary in length, each person determines how many pages each participant will be allotted for use in her journal. Sticky notes or some other way of marking each person's section will be helpful, or a note in the beginning can simply tell participants how many pages they are allotted.

3. Each person writes in the first section of her own journal. Unless the group has agreed upon a particular theme for the journals, pretty much anything goes. Text, photos, stickers, doodling, postcards of hometowns, or just about anything that will fit onto a page can be used. Creative folks have a blast when it comes to this type of journal project.

4. Once the initial section is written, each person passes/mails her journal to the next person on a pre-arranged list. Let's say for purposes of this example that exchanges will be made on the first of each month. On April 1, Participant A passes her journal to Participant B. The same day, Participant B passes her journal to Participant C, and so on. After a month of writing, each person again passes the journal in her possession to the next person on the list. This continues until each person's journal, filled with her friends' contributions, makes its way back to its owner.

I cherish my own round-robin journal, created years ago, and know that I will enjoy it for years to come. Having a tangible reminder of my friends, especially in this age of ever-increasing technology, is beyond special. It is my hope that you'll give this type of journaling a try. I believe you'll enjoy the process and the end result!


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    • workingmomwm profile image

      Mishael Austin Witty 6 years ago from Kentucky, USA

      What a great idea, Vickie! I'm connected with a local writer's group and have a lot of friends in that. It would be fun to try something like this with them.

    • Vickie Bovender profile image

      Vickie Bovender 6 years ago from Southeastern US

      That'd be perfect! The one I participated in was from an on-line writers' group - from Hawaii to North Carolina and states in-between the journals travelled. I truly cherish mine. :) Thank you for reading and commenting!

    • Rosefall profile image

      Rosefall 6 years ago from Ohio!

      Sounds like a great idea, Vickie! Thanks for sharing.

    • Vickie Bovender profile image

      Vickie Bovender 6 years ago from Southeastern US

      It's really a lot of fun...and at least once a month it's actually nice to open the mailbox! Thank you for reading my little Hub. :)

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 6 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      Oh I love this idea! You are so clever. I cannot wait to try it. My bestest best friend lives in Ohio (brrrrr) and we can do this! Thank you-thank you.

    • Vickie Bovender profile image

      Vickie Bovender 6 years ago from Southeastern US

      Oh, that'd be really fun! The two of you could pass it back and forth and back and forth! :) Have a great time,Hyphenbird! Thank you for reading and commenting.

    • Alexander Pease profile image

      Alexander Pease 6 years ago from Maine

      This also sounds like a great way to start a cooperative writing group, to write books. Multiple people would work on the book(s) and would turn out novels.

      I am wishing that I had three or four reliable friends to do this with, :(. It sounds like a lot of fun!

      Excellent hub, and excellent idea.

    • Vickie Bovender profile image

      Vickie Bovender 6 years ago from Southeastern US

      Thank you, Alexander. I actually did the round-robin journal with a group of internet friends - we'd all been members of Writers Village University for a long time by then. As Hyphenbird above said, she and her best friend could do this project. Maybe you and one other close friend could, too! Thanks for reading and commenting. :)

    • BorneoTattoo profile image

      BorneoTattoo 6 years ago

      Great Idea, I'm posting this hub to my facebook to see if any of my friends are interested. Vickie, THANKS I am so excited to try this! I have some unstructured journals of this type (which my friends and I used to pass around between classes in high school). The contributions are more like "Luke is so hot! I can't wait to pass him in the hallway after this class" and "Mr. Silverman is like the most boring teacher ever, ever, ever!" but time and time again I find myself going to those little books when I need a smile. I LOVE THIS IDEA. voted up & awesome/beautiful.

    • kirstenblog profile image

      kirstenblog 6 years ago from London UK

      My friend above, BorneoTattoo, clued me in to read this hub on facebook, glad she did too! I love the idea, very creative and I can see how this would make such a great keepsake!

    • Vickie Bovender profile image

      Vickie Bovender 6 years ago from Southeastern US

      Borneo, it really is fun. I remember high school "slam books" where we'd pass around a little autograph book or something similar, but each page would have a question at the top for each person to answer. Come to think of it, that might even be fun now - in my old age and all. Thank you so much for sharing on Facebook, reading, commenting and voting! :)

    • Vickie Bovender profile image

      Vickie Bovender 6 years ago from Southeastern US

      Kirsten, give it a try! It's really fun, but remember to only try this if you can count on all participants to "play nicely." :) Thanks for reading!

    • sueroy333 profile image

      Susan Mills 6 years ago from Indiana

      I would never have thought of this in a bazillion years!! I love it!

      Thanks for sharing such an awesome idea!!!

      Voted up, useful and awesome!

    • Vickie Bovender profile image

      Vickie Bovender 6 years ago from Southeastern US

      Thank YOU, Sue!

    • Docmo profile image

      Mohan Kumar 5 years ago from UK

      what a great idea! will have to try this with some writer friends. voted up/awesome!

    • Vickie Bovender profile image

      Vickie Bovender 5 years ago from Southeastern US

      Thank you, Doc. I appreciate it!

    • viveresperando profile image

      viveresperando 5 years ago from A Place Where Nothing Is Real

      this sounds like an awesome idea~!

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 4 years ago

      I never heard about anything like this. Sounds interesting. Thanks for sharing this unique kind of idea. voted up and awesome.

    • Vickie Bovender profile image

      Vickie Bovender 4 years ago from Southeastern US

      Thank you so much. It's really fun - so long as you can rely on all the participants! You'll have a real treasure at the end!

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