Customer Review

345 of 381 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars not quite expected..., July 24, 2007
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This review is from: Wreck This Journal (Paperback)
For some reason, during preorder, I thought this was a book to read. Like, a book full of words that you sit down in a chair with a cup of coffee and read through from start to finish. You know...a *book*.

When it arrived, then, I was a little disappointed to find that it wasn't, in fact, a book to read at all. It looked like just journal prompts -- bits of writing on the page and lots of blank space for you to fill in. I set it aside.

I picked it back up when I was getting ready to put it on the shelf, where it would have languished with the other books I'd get around to someday. I flipped through it. A prompt caught my eye.

I started reading the prompts and blurbs, and it started sinking in: this isn't a book at all. This is PARTICIPATORY. This is a book that doesn't let you sit there, passively, with your coffee, just observing what the author's trying to say. This is a book that makes you get up, makes you smear it with crazy and beat it up in ways that most people couldn't imagine treating their books or journals. Especially not a journal. Wrecking a *journal*?

Over the next few days, I carried this book with me and beat the livin' tar out of it. I followed the prompts. I wrote on pages with food and with my tongue. I ripped pages out and crumpled them up and stuck them back in. I sat with it in a chair with my coffee, for sure, but I also spilled coffee on it -- on purpose. I wrote in things backwards and scribbled really, really hard.

In short, this book went through things that most of us should never have to. I kicked this thing around and waited while it came back for more.

And, you know...? It was TREMENDOUSLY LIBERATING. I beat the snot outta the pages, but when I was done, there was a whole new surface for me to look at and consider. I found new colors (thanks to berry-blue gum and dirt). I found that I really like painting over surfaces that have been scored by ballpoint pens and fingernails, and that watercolor over crumpled paper makes the most interesting texture, always unpredictable.

What I thought was going to be a disappointment has probably been one of the best books out there for getting me to "lighten up" a bit and just get back to playing freely on a page. From one star in my brain, this book elevated itself with its simple presentation and revolutionary (to me) ideas to a five-star keeper. I'm even considering getting more, to hand out to artists-blocked friends this holiday season.

Get this book. Even if you're not blocked now, or can't imagine defacing a book (even if it tells you to). One day, if you ever are, this book can help knock you out of the rut you're in, and put you on a whole new path.
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Comments

Tracked by 1 customer

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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 27, 2010 12:51:11 AM PST
This make me excited to get it! I can't wait to beat the tar out of this book!

Posted on Jan 1, 2012 12:21:10 AM PST
hestia74 says:
I've been blocked all my life and I would never consider treating a book like this, so I will definitely get this journal! Thanks for your review!

Posted on Apr 7, 2013 8:46:53 PM PDT
meeeeee23 says:
I wonder what happens if you buy it used?

Posted on Jan 17, 2014 9:26:17 PM PST
You should have looked at reviews previous things.

Posted on Jun 1, 2014 7:12:19 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 1, 2014 7:13:09 AM PDT
Rachel says:
hahahah lol. "I wonder if you buy it used" ~another response to the review
I love it,that made my day.
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