Photo journaling to ignite your writing

Need some writing inspiration?  Try photo journaling

When you want to kick-start the old grey matter, did out your photo album. Photos are an incredibly powerful way to get deep into the recesses of your memory.

Photos are gifts, moments of your life captured, milestones, birthdays, happy, sad, people long gone, wild (or otherwise) parties, trips, holidays, houses, beaches…

There is so much to be captured from these long lost and forgotten treasure troves. It is not just the picture, it is everything around the photo and as such, is a brilliant way to help you to piece together your life for a memoir or personal essay. Go on you know you want to!

 Pick a photo, any photo and ask yourself these questions:-

  • What were you wearing?
  • Who were you with?
  • Where were you?
  • How old were you?
  • What happened that day
  • What happened the day before / day after
  • What sounds, smells, emotions does this bring up?
  • What else does this memory conjure up?
  • Describe the place where the photograph was taken.
  • Describe the other people in the photograph and their relation to you.
  • What happened right before this photograph was taken? After?
  • What surprises you about this picture, now that you really look at it?
  • Who is missing from this picture? Why?
  • What can’t we see in the picture?
  • If that person in the picture could talk, what would he or she be saying?

Your action plan – creating a photo journal as writing inspiration

  1. Dig out some photos
  2. Write a few stories to wiggle the grey matter
  3. Ask yourself ‘how inspired am I to carry on writing my memoir….?’

Photos get me every time, especially the old ones, I get lost for hours and the stories are always more exciting than they really were. That’s probably what getting older does for you!

Share your favourite photos and what they bring up for you.

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