This sitting down on the floor in front of a small Japanese table you bought surplus over a shade of dim sunlight to write on a new page is love. It is faith. It is believing that you still have something to say to the world even if you’re unsure what it is. It is believing that something good, something necessary, will come out of writing. And for someone who refuses the idea of submitting to a big brother in the sky, this is the only true act of faith.

This is grit. Doing it not out of joy but out of belief. The world is not here to make you happy. It is not here to serve you. It is here to slap you on the face so you can see happiness lurking behind the moss-covered crevices of your soul. To pursue only things that make you happy is hollow—hollow as the cage that it is.

Therefore, the first principle is to believe that this world is worth walking no matter how bleak the evidence for it. The practice is to simply wake up in the morning and trust. This is all the work that has to happen. A journal entry begins with faith and ends with joyful expectation.