by Phoenix A. Desertsong, Staff Writer, Healer & Advocate
You know what has always been tough for me as a writer? Letting words go.
Seriously, I'm a packrat of words. And I don't mean in books. I have volumes and volumes of digital journals, half-baked ideas, story drafts, unpublished articles... lots of writing stuff that may never see the light of day. And that's fine.
Recently, I decided to go back and clear out a huge portion of those words. Why? Because it just had to go.
As I try and minimalize the clutter in other aspects of my life, it disturbed me that I had so many words that really served no purpose anymore. They are simply taking up space. That's not to say I delete everything. There are some things that are harmless and sentimental. But if I don't have a use for it, why do I have it?
I've deleted hundreds of documents in my archive purge, plus even more in duplicate files that happen from switching computers over the years. Is this a necessary exercise? It is for me. It's a rediscovery of my past as a writer. And there are some good things, many of which will be published somewhere at a later date. But the clutter had to go in order to discover the "good stuff."
Also, the other major thing I've done is to trim excess out of the good stuff, rambles and extra words and run-on sentences that plagued my earlier writing. Still today, I aim to be more concise. Big ideas, small words – I suppose that's what I'm aiming for.
But I hate editing. It's a necessary evil, though, and I have a constant urge to express the thoughts going through my head. Why? I guess that's a curse for whoever takes up writing as her first love (or was it Star Trek?)
Do you ever find yourself having trouble trimming back the words to get at the pith of what you are really trying to say? Believe me, it gets easier with practice. But not that much easier.
~ Phoenix <3
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Often known by her nickname "Ami," Ms. Phoenix Amelia Desertsong has written for many online publications, often under pen names.