Friday, March 22, 2013

World's Most Organized Junk Collector/Writer

I bought this beautiful Martha Stewart 5.5x8 notebook for
organizing my writing reference sheets on GMC, Character
sheets, Hero's Journey notes, Workshop notes, and
manuscript lists. 
Ramblings on junk and organization...

Today I need to organize my junk. By junk I mean anything that's misplaced, or misfiled, or just missed. From info printouts pertaining to writing to photo files on my computer. Today I tried to log in to Family Features, where I get the recipes and articles for my Friday Features and my log in didn't work. I have it written down in at least two places, but neither works. So, where did I write down the one that works?

Then I got sidetracked and ended up on YouTube and found that I can redesign my channel. That sounded like fun so I searched for the photo I want to put on the header, but couldn't find it. Is it in my photos folder? Or maybe in my folder of elements I use on my web site? I'll put that aside for now.

Another thing I need to do is finish the cover for my upcoming release A DADDY FOR LUKE but I haven't yet put all the elements for that cover in one location for easy access.

A family member once came in to my home office to ask to borrow something. Despite the piles of junk I went right to it. She called me the World's Most Organized Junk Collector. And I think she's right. I do know where everything is. Well, most everything. It's like an archeology dig, I know what strata to go to to look for something based on the last time I used it or saw it. But that doesn't always work. More than once I've gone into my office looking for something and not finding it I think, "Well, it must be in my bedroom." So I go to the other end of the house and look there. Not finding it I think, "I must have overlooked it in my office," and I go back to my office and look again. Sometimes I'll make three or four trips between my office and my bedroom, looking in all the other room of the house on the way. A waste of energy? I like to think of it as burning calories.

I am organized. If you looked in my drawers, you'd say the same thing. Trouble is, I have more stuff than will fit in my drawers or cupboards so it ends up in my home office/crafts room/storage room/junk room. Too much stuff equals: It's time to down size. Today I put out a pile of stuff for the Friends of Multiple Sclerosis to pick up. It's not really junk to me, except that I don't use it anymore and it's taking up space. I hope it's useful to someone else. I believe in reuse, recycle and repurpose. I don't like just tossing stuff in the dump.

The hardest part about getting rid of junk is what the junk represents. This is a project I was going to complete, that is for a still-life I was going to paint. That bag of photos, brochures and ephemera is going into a scrapbook of my trip to Navajo Nations five years ago. This pile of CDs is going to get uploaded to my computer. That box of old dolls is going to be sold on eBay. And the list goes on. Many times the item has a sentimental connection. "They" say you don't need an item to remember a person or place in the past, you have your memories. But I find visual and tactile reminders are stronger than just my memory. 

The thing about having a creative streak is that there are more ideas than can physically be accomplished, especially if you're working 40+ hours a week for someone else. There are more ideas for projects to make and more stories to write running around in our brains.

So every weekend--and I have three-day weekends--I plan on doing more organizing (in my home office and on my computer), more downsizing, and making more heartrending decisions on what to get rid of.

Are you organized? Are you a "junk" collector? Do you find it hard to "let go"? How do you organize and/or let go?

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