Convo book, short for conversation book, may be something a lot of you already have, but may be calling it by a different name. (note: the more popular name for it would be “exchange diary”)

It is a diary of a sort, but you share it with another friend, or a group of friends. Perhaps it’s more accurate to say it’s like a predecessor of an e-group/yahoo group; you write a letter (or letters) and pass the book onto the next person in the group, and they pass it to the next person.

It was something that my friends and I have been doing since high school, with some books (groups) being more successful than others. It’s normally the books between small groups of people (e.g. 2-3 people) that are the most successful; it’s easier to keep track of the book, and people are more willing to open up in their entries.

(the kind of book I used with my friends; it was pre-printed with subject titles, such as “today’s news”, “weather”, “mood”)

In the past, the convo books between my friends and I are primarily journal-based; letters to each other about events we all went to. In some of the later books, we would include a random sketch, or a ticket stub.

We stopped writing once I left to work in Hong Kong – our convo books were commentary on shared experiences as opposed to letters on missed events.

Since I’ve returned to Australia, I had re-discovered my old stash of convo books. I showed them to my friend, and we had a good giggle over the high school dramas we recorded.

My friend thought we should try resuming the exercise and the next day we went out to kikki.k and bought some really cute notebooks.

It wasn’t until a few entries into my notebook that I realise I should do an art journal page in the convo book. I won’t be doing a spread for every entry, that would just take way too long, but the occasional page would be a nice touch.

So how many people have taken part in convo books, or exchange diaries, before? I don’t mean round robin journals, but books where you have an on-going conversation with another person.

If you haven’t, why don’t you try starting one. It could be with someone you’re already really good friends with, or with someone you would want to get to know better.

Post a comment with a link of some of the entries that you’ve created.