Show, Don’t Tell Journaling Tool

Show, Don’t Tell Journaling Tool

The most common advice given writers is, “Show, don’t tell.” This Journaling Tool “shows” journal writers how to do it through:

  • Illustrating the difference between abstract vs concrete words
  • Providing examples of how using active verbs enlivens language
  • Describing ways to create images that bring descriptions alive
  • Suggesting exercises and prompts for writing through the senses
  • Offering tips for more descriptive writing

In addition, this tool outlines nine specific areas that can add richness and depth to the writing and add to the experience of writing itself.

The prompts, guidelines, tips, and ideas in this Show, Don’t Tell Journaling Tool invite you to uncover and discover layers of experience and reflection in your writing.

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“Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass,” wrote Anton Chekov in what is a perfect description of the ideas of “show, don’t tell” presented in this Journaling Tool.

This Show, Don’t Tell Creative Writing Kit and Journaling Tool can help you create more vivid writing in your journal and in other creative writing.

  • Maybe you’re keeping a travel journal and you want to capture the sights and sounds and interactions of your experiences on the road.
  • Maybe you’re writing personal stories, your own and those of your family, in a legacy journal. The guidelines, tips and prompts in this Show, Don’t Tell tool will help you bring those stories alive.
  • Maybe you plan on using your journal as notes for an intended memoir. Show, Don’t Tell examples and prompts will guide you in writing more vivid details, help you capture interactions with others, and develop scenes that can dramatize events.
  • Or maybe you simply want to make your journal writing livelier through close attention to every-day details and descriptions.

With 11 pages of ideas, examples, and prompts, including nine specific areas of “showing,” this Show, Don’t Tell Journaling Tool offers many paths to more vivid writing. It can enhance your journal writing experience and bring your memories, stories, and reflections to life on the page.

This tool also provides fodder for journal and other creative writers as an interactive mini-workshop to practice alone or with others. A recommended reading list suggests additional books that can expand your expressive and creative writing experience.

Show, don’t just tell, your experiences, memories, reflections and thoughts with the assistance of this creative Journaling Tool.

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Judy Reeves

Judy Reeves is a writer and teacher who has published four books on writing, including the award-winning A Writer’s Book of Days, and, most recently, Wild Women, Wild Voices. Her work has appeared in the San Diego Reader, The Frozen Moment, A Year in Ink, Connotations Press, Serving House Journal, Waymark, and Expressive Writing, Classroom and Community, and other journals and anthologies. She teaches at writing conferences internationally and at San Diego Writers, Ink, a nonprofit literary center she co-founded. Current writing project: a memoir based on an around-the-world trip she took many years ago.

“Many thanks for the Introductory Workshop Kit I purchased. It’s led to some terrific times at our table and many a Tuesday we were reluctant to put down our pens.  In my book, that’s the best outcome of all!” ~ Noel Horn


“Along with being an expert in her field, Judy is devoted to guiding individuals in creating a personal daily writing practice.”  ~ Pamela Underwood


“Thanks for shaking me up and inspiring my own muse.” ~ Gina Cameron


“I have recently rekindled my love and desire for writing and I can't describe how helpful your book has been for me. … It has helped me understand who I am as a writer and dive deeper into the process.” ~ Ashley Looker

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