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Our anxiety to find something positive in everything is evident in the comments about Terry Tempest Williams mother's blank journals.

The ambiguity surrounding the blank journals deprives them of any reliable sense of message. If one is intent on leaving someone a message, why not just write it in the book bought for that purpose and leave it as a personal keepsake?

When I think of the expectations that Ms Williams must have had as she opened the first journal, I can't help but feel her disappointment at finding it and the others blank.

Keeping a journal is no easy task. As Mark Twain noted in "The Innocence Abroad" - "But if he only lives twenty-one days, he will find out that only those rare natures that are made of pluck, endurance, devotion to duty for duty's sake, and invincible determination may hope to venture upon so tremendous an enterprise as the keeping of a journal and not sustain a shameful defeat."

A blank journal is not a failure or a defeat as no attempt has been made. A blank journal is but a good intention unfulfilled.