Finnish is a difficult language to learn. I am also a person of a certain age, and even though there is no data to back up the notion that learning a language gets harder as you get older… Finnish is a difficult language to learn. I have made several runs at it, taking classes, doing online courses, using workbooks, and none of them has stuck. Knowing myself, and how I learn things, I decided to put together my own methodology. That’s when I started a language-learning journal. At the front of the book is the standard bullet-journal style index. Following that are pages and spreads devoted to specific topics and contexts. All of these are based on survival phrases, tailored[…]

A fantasy heartbreaker is a tabletop roleplaying game that is clearly a labor of love, but not nearly as radical or innovative as its creators think it is. Quite often, it’s nothing more than a rewrite of an existing game, with some tweaks. A rule they don’t like is changed or replaced, their favorite house rules are incorporated, or they add one new thing and think that qualifies it as an entirely different game. It’s a heartbreaker not because the game is necessarily bad, but because a lot of effort went into something that ultimately provides very little payoff for either the creators or the players and readers. I have code named the roleplay game system I’m working on The[…]

Starting at the back of the journal, I add pages for specific projects. Some of these are trackers. I am a fan of Jerry Seinfeld’s “don’t break the chain” method, so I write the name of the thing I’m tracking across the top — making my minimum daily word count on a writing project, for example, meditating, and reading — and then set up one week per line as follows: Week of 4-10 March S M T W T F S Week of 11-17 March S M T W T F S Week of 18-24 March S M T W T F S There is a note on the daily page to remind me to touch this tracker. When I’ve[…]

Following up on my posts on how I set up my monthly and weekly journal spreads, here’s the layout I use for my daily journal setup. There are some things that are pretty standard for popular bullet journal spreads, but I tend to go my own way with a lot of things. It is definitely not neat and tidy. The first daily page goes directly after the weekly spread. I only add one day at a time, so that I can take as much or as little space as needed. It’s always a minimum of one page, for ease of reference, but if I end up taking 10 pages of notes for the day, then that’s how it goes. The[…]

My weekly journal setup is largely dependent upon my monthly spread. I tend to only fill out one week at a time, so that my daily pages can take up as much or as little space as they need. It is more detailed than my monthly spread, but less detailed that the daily pages, project pages, or trackers. The left-hand page of a weekly spread looks a lot like the monthly, with a few key differences. Instead of writing the name of the month across the top, I write “Week of month date-date”, like “Week of March 11-17”. In one column I add a quick calendar. I write S M T W T F, then below I add three lines:[…]