When you’re a writer and a hoarder it is easy to accumulate lots of paper and information. After all, you never know when it mind come in handy. In a filing cabinet I have dutifully stored items pulled from magazines and newspapers that I thought could be an idea for a character, a story or a poem. There they have sat in the drawer until recently I decided it was time to do a clean out, not just of the filing cabinet but of my study.
During that time my son phoned wanting to know if I had copies of poems he wrote as a child and young teenager. Did I have copies? Of course I did. What mother doesn’t keep such mementoes? Could I quickly find them was an entirely different question? After some searching I found them, along with some other keepsakes that made me smile and sometimes cry, in one of two large boxes hiding under my desk because to date I have found nowhere to unpack them. Maybe when I sort through the accumulated and largely out of date, I suspect, writing information I have stored over the years I will find a spot in the desk or bookcase.
At the moment the bookcase is like this with only one shelf that has been partly attacked.
In it I found information about magazines and publishers, some of whom no longer exist. I found research about lighthouses,
limestone caves, the brain, owls, alpacas, penguins and various other random items.
There is also one shelf and a half filled with exercise books of my quiet times over the years. Otherwise too often I tend to forget.
However all the other writing tools and information needs a serious call. After all, some of those things were pulled out of magazines before the internet came to such prominence. If I did need them, I could easily Google the information back without taking up room with shelves of folders of paper information. My recycling bin is going to get a serious boost as it has already.
When it comes to old manuscripts that haven’t been published, I feel I should be ruthless if I am not planning to write any more. And yet..... Somehow I am loathe to part with them. As I say goodbye to this group and other writing groups and activities, I feel I am at a closing of doors. I just can’t quite bring myself to close the door tight.
So who knows as continue to go through and clean out the study it may make it clearer about stopping writing or, it could evoke some new ideas. Time will tell. But for now it is goodbye from me. Thanks for being a source of encouragement and blessing over my time here. Bye all.
Over the years, Dale has written fiction, poetry, children’s fiction, bible studies and Sunday school lessons. More information about Dale can be found at http://www.daleharcombe.com or on her Write and Read with Dale blog http://www.livejournal.com/users/orangedale/