Looking for happiness? Gretchen Rubin spent a year in search of it, and she's currently writing a memoir about what she found during this time. It's called "The Happiness Project." (Found via Moleskinerie.)
One happiness-finding technique she developed in her quest is what she calls "one-sentence journals." By writing just a sentence each day, she recorded precious moments of her life, improved her memory, and felt accomplished. She writes:
For quite a while, I’ve been alarmed by how little I remember about my own past. As a consequence, I’ve become much more careful to take photos and videos regularly, as a kind of diary to keep my memories vivid.
Also, I wished that I could keep a proper journal, to maintain a colorful record of what’s happening in my life, but that would just be too much work.
Instead, I came up with the idea of keeping a “one-sentence journal.”
Now, each night, I write one sentence (well, actually, usually it’s three or four sentences, and I type them into the computer) about what happened that day to me, the Big Man and the girls...
Its genius is that it's simple and takes so little time, even the busiest can regularly keep this up.
I thought of another twist on this, specifically for writers. Here's my technique:
1. Sit down, take a deep breath, your pen and notebook nearby.
2. Let a sentence form in your thoughts.
3. Write it down.
4. Close your notebook.
5. Let the sentence be as it is. Don't judge it, don't correct it, don't add anything to it. Write a sentence in this format each day.
Who knows what you'll have in a few months, let alone a few years? It could be poetry, a novel slowly forming from your subconscious, or simply a recorded meditation of your life at different moments. Whatever results, the process of getting there sounds lighthearted, enjoyable to do and possibly very inspiring.
I can also see this used for writers suffering writer's block. By writing one sentence every day, perhaps the offending blocks will be slowly dislodged and the words will pour forth again. Said writer will also have something to show at the end of the dry spell, making regret less and the desert not without an oasis.