Purely as a warmup, throwaway writing exercise, I've been keeping a journal this year. I ask myself to write at least 100 words a day, and they don't have to be good, or tell a story. I just have to put down a few sentences.
This is not a journal ever meant for anyone else's
eyes, and I can't imagine why anyone would want to read it, since it's
the equivalent of finger exercises for a pianist. And yet, I still find
it difficult to write with the assumption that nobody else will ever
read it. I'm not revising or polishing what I write, but I often find
myself adjusting my words or topic as if to accommodate some nonexistent
audience. I was talking with a writer friend about that, and she
agreed: she also feels that ghostly imaginary reader hovering over her
shoulder when writing a journal. Does every diarist feel it, I wonder? I
suppose we're too aware of how many journals have been published, even
when their writers never intended it.