I have a new practice diary standing by, the old one will go into the cupboard later today or early tomorrow morning.
|This is a stock picture and is not my actual diary.|
2017 diary with current pen.
|2018 diary with same pen.|
Having a pen nearby is an important part of the practice diary keeping process. A practice diary pen needs to be checked regularly. Because it sits on a chair in our living room (with the practice diary), there is a danger of it being borrowed by another person who lives here to write cards and similar things. The pen needs constant monitoring. As I said, without a good reliable pen a practice diary is useless and vunerable to being out of date.
Why don't you have a back up pen Richard (of RBB)?I usually have one stored away somewhere and I also try to make sure that there are spare pens around the house. However, there is a problem.
Imagine that my practice diary is God - all he asks is that pens come to him and they will be saved.
This object is Satan.
God (the practice diary) also contains important information like:
- The date I returned to playing the violin.
- My IRD number.
- My MOE number.
Each dated page serves one day. It records practice times for double bass, violin and guitar. It also contains any important notes, like a gig or an upcoming event. Often there are some Italian reminders at the top of the page, near the date. It is not ideal to practise three instruments because there is a danger of one or two being neglected. Say a bass gig is coming up, it is natural to favour that instrument.
I like to think of these instruments like the Holy Trinity - each is an important part of the whole.
I always endeavour to make sure that one instrument is not being missed out and getting less practice.
So why do you record your practice times Richard (of RBB)?
I find that it keeps me honest. Funnily enough, when I replace a practice book, the old one goes into a cupboard and is very rarely looked at again. I guess I just like to be accurate about how much practice I have actually done.
There's always a certain amount of excitement and a little trepidation when I kick off a new practice diary. I used to set goals - about how many hours I intend to do this year or what I will practise.
These goals are seldom (if ever) met because requirements change as the year unfolds. I now believe that the greatest purpose of the practice diary is for reflecting on what actually happened.
A good rule for the practice diary is keep it simple.
Well, there you have it. I hope this is helpful if you're thinking of setting up a practice diary.