Before I get on to the business of working on my novel, I have several projects I want to finish. The biggest one is cleaning my office. It is a nightmare of papers, boxes, wrapping paper and ribbon, more papers, scrapbooking odds and ends, more papers, toys, and more papers. It is a giant mess. But really, it’s not my fault. I blame my mother. Twice she’s gotten motivated and hauled a truckload of things up from my old house. The first time, I got everything put away, including the EIGHT garbage bags full of clothes that came with the boxes, books, and other paraphernalia she hauled. The second time, most of the boxes just sat in my office. Then they started to grow.
I think dust and neglect breeds more boxes and clutter, like Gremlins and water, you know? The boxes my mother brought encouraged other boxes to move in, then the baby gear and mail took up residence. It didn’t take long for my lovely office to become a big dumping and storage room, and now I try not to go in there too often.
But I miss my big monitor, my desk, and being in my own room. This is why one of my pre-noveling projects is to clean my office. When I do get back to writing, it’ll be nice to have my big monitor and my lovely work space.
I won’t be able to clean and de-clutter in one go, so I’ve developed a (very unsophisticated and open to interpretation) strategy.
Krista’s Cutting the Clutter Strategy
- Create a clutter conquering plan. (Check!)
- Every day, use one of the following methods to de-clutter:
- Spend 15 minutes/day de-cluttering.
- De-clutter until you have a bag full of garbage to toss (could be 10 minutes or an hour).
- Go for the bang. Put away the biggest items, the ones that will make the office noticeably cleaner and more organized.
- Keep a box in the office and fill it with items that shouldn’t live there. Bonus: Use a nice fabric box that will make the job more pleasant.
- At the end of every cleaning, toss the trash and put away the items in the relocation box.
I don’t want to get too bogged down with rules and techniques, so I’m sticking with this simple strategy and will improvise as I go.
Now, I know some people think that even when I complete this project, another project is going to come up and keep me from writing. Some people think I just need to drop the distractions and focus. With my daughter requiring so much of my time, I have very little of it for any projects. But this one I have to finish. If I’m going to get back to writing, I need my office.