Have I told you that I’ve finally got some paid editing work?
It’s so much fun. I’m working for a local parenting educator who is just the sweetest lady ever. She has brilliant ideas and services to share but has trouble pinning all her ideas down in writing before they run off into the next ones. It’s such a pleasure teasing them all out and helping them shine like they should.
As a result I have been reading more about the art of writing and polishing up my own skills. I instinctively know when words are flowing well and expressing their ideas clearly, but I’d like to have a better understanding of the underlying mechanics.
(side note: it’s daunting writing about this process! Makes me more self-conscious about my own flow and clarity. Please go easy on me, fellow grammar-nuts. This is only a personal blog after all…)
In my browsing I finally picked up Anne Lammott’s Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life. I’m only partially into it but already it is so inspiring. I especially love her chapter on the Shitty First Draft: this has always been my biggest hurdle, but she makes it sound far more achievable.
And it really can be applied to life too.
My life so far has been a bit of a shitty first draft: immature, rough around the edges, and blurted out onto the page all higgeldy-piggeldy with no editing or self-censoring. I have a decent idea of what works and what doesn’t (even though I don’t always remember in the moment) and have a whole bunch of interesting plot-points and character developments to draw from and expand upon as I start the refining process.
The move down the coast is definitely, 100% happening. In two months. The clock is ticking to expel all the gunk from my house and my head so I can make the most of this sea-change. I anticipate churning through the house quite a few times; first removing the obvious rubbish and smaller donations, then further whittling down our belongings in more and more detail.
In all honesty I hope to get rid of about 80% of our stuff. I’m sick of all of past-Meg’s baggage weighing me down! She needs to skirt up and properly curate her memories and mementos so present- and future-Meg can stop dragging her around behind us.
So that’s my focus for now. Start gearing up for the better second draft of my life by editing the shitty first one.
After a broad sweep through the house to sort and stocktake I will apply the KonMari method to my own belongings as speedily as I can. That way I can start this next phase in our new house surrounded only by things that spark joy.
Well, apart from all the kids’ stuff anyway…
Definitely leaving that one for future-Meg to deal with for now!