Journal Mode is a program which helps maintaining a journal easier. It can be used privately and entries may be selectively published.

Journal Mode can be found here Lisp:journal.el . To run Journal Mode you will need Gnu Emacs or XEmacs (note that it hasn’t been tested with XEmacs) and EmacsWikiMode.

To start a journal copy journal.el to your load path and add the following to your ~/.emacs:

  (require 'journal)

To view the journal home page just type M-x journal. To create entries, type M-x journal-create-entry. Enter the title you wish to use for this entry. Then type the categories you wish the entry to belong to. Just typing “Emacs” will add the entry to “CategoryEmacs”, you may type the full name if you wish. Type RET to end the list of categories.

Now type the contents of your entry. When you are done, save the buffer. You will notice that the contents will have been automatically copied to each of the category pages, the day page, and the home page.

You may edit the contents of any entry from anywhere. Whenever a journal buffer is saved, the contents will be updated everywhere throughout the journal.

In the near future, remember, planner and RSS integration will be added. journal.el was written in a way that makes this easy. Features such as publishing to Livejournal, Blogger, Advogato, etc. are planned.

To keep up with the latest versions, download Gnu Arch and just type:

  tla register-archive \
  tla get

13 Oct, 2005 the link above to the journal.el does not seem to work.

18 Jan, 2006: Thanks to the great folks at, the source has been “backed up” so to speak. Head here to get it straight from the Wayback Machine, or go here for a mirrored copy on my server. I’d post it to the Elisp area, but I’m not the author and I’m not sure of the policy here for things of that nature. – JuneTate

You may also be interested in muse-journal.el, part of EmacsMuse. (Muse is emacs-wiki 3.0)

14 Feb, 2006: Hey I’ve fixed the link, sorry to everyone who couldn’t get it for the 6 MONTHS it was offline. I’m not much of an Emacs junkie anymore, so I don’t use it. It probably be better to use muse-journal if you want an Emacs journal. You can probably tell from the code that at the time I didn’t know macros very well. Maybe I’ll try and get it down to 400 lines (it is currently a whopping 1252 lines and 106 forms!) one day. – HoanTonThat

See Also

Not to be confused with Journal