As if it weren't enough to keep up with the house, yard, pets, body, and inner spiritual state, now we must add "purging old computer documents" to our never ending to-do lists.
I spent almost two hours yesterday going through my Favorites folder on the Internet. You know, that folder that you save a website to because you think that you will someday return to it. Not so much. I couldn't remember what half the sites were so I had to click on the link to go to the site so I could decided if it was worth saving or deleting. I ended up being pretty hard core , deleting 3/4ths of the sites I'd saved. I treated the sites like the clothes in the back of my closet. If I haven't worn them in over two years, I'm not going to miss them when they're gone.
Then since I had indulged it, my Type A personality really kicked in and I created little folders for the remaining links with titles such as "Grammar & Reference" and "Marketing Tips" and "Cool Writing Stuff! Metaphors, Idioms, Exercises." But I have to say, I swelled with pride this morning when I clicked on my Favorites icon and found such a tidy domestic scene in place.
Now my Word documents beckon to me and they will not be so easily tamed. You try being a writer and having 10 versions of what is essentially the same document saved on both your computer and laptop and figure out which versions are okay to dump and which you might want to keep because there happens to be a beautiful turn of phrase buried in there. I'm stringent on getting rid of most clutter in life but my writing leaves me flummoxed. What if I delete something I need later?
Which, btw, is turning into a huge problem as I'm spending the first months of this new year doing many many many writing exercises, both on my laptop and in handwritten journals. I'm stuck on what to do with my output. The writings aren't really part of anything like a novel or article; they're just exercises. But... sometimes unexpected ideas are birthed from the nothingness of such writings. Do I save them? If so, where? I picture some giant jumbled folder that I'll avoid looking at because it's such a mess of scraps of paper and hard-to-decipher scribbles. Right now my method is to leave the writing scattered on the guest bed (the cats like to sleep on them, so at least my work is serving a higher purpose) or saved in random folders on my computer.
However, now that the urge to purge has hit, there's no going back. I foresee long hours in front of a computer screen facing. me. Let me know if you have any organizational suggestions. I know several of my regular blog readers (and you know who you are) share my anal-retentive qualities. Let's put them to work.