Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Cleanliness Is Next to Godliness

Photo: Dust Storm in Cairo, Egypt

I'll bet that writers in general have a lot of obsessive behaviors, things that have to do with writing, but are also more about personality.  For example, I already wrote about my need to have the office organized, and the writing desk cleared, before I feel writerly.  And if I'm not feeling writerly, I'm not writing.  The odd thing is that I'm not an organized person, and normally that doesn't bother me.  My desk at work is a mess!  Always has piles of things on it.  A co-worker frequently comes in and clears it and organizes it--though whether this is more for me or for her is open to debate.  But the clutter certainly bothers her more than it bothers me.  Yet I can work perfectly well with it in that state.  In fact, it's so cluttered so often, that when it isn't, it makes me feel a little weird.

And my car!  It's a pit all the time!  A real mess.  Even I get ashamed, but who has the time to clean it?  Piles of garbage, of bags and wrappers and other things are always all over the place.  It gets so bad that I frequently have to move things out of the way just so I can fit the dog in the back and not worry that he'll be buried by an avalanche of things when I turn a sharp corner.  And yet I drive perfectly fine.

So why is it that my writing office is an exception to this?  I don't know.  Maybe because that's where creation happens, or springs from.  (I rarely do much actual writing in the office.)  Maybe because, if you've noticed in past entries, I have so many projects in my head that I get paralyzed if the office is as cluttered as my head is.  Maybe it's just because I feel that, if I'm not selling some work that day, or accepting representation, I should at least get the damn office clean.  I don't know.

I've also already written about my favorite writing shirt, and I also have to admit that I check my emails very obsessively when I'm expecting a response from a magazine editor or an agent.  I mean, at least once or twice an hour, if I can, when I'm not at work.  That's a lot, I know.  I need help.

Like I said before, we're all a little crazy.

1 comment:

  1. I don't have a home office; I just write with my laptop on the sofa or bed. But I have to have total quiet, or maybe classical music. I get really annoyed if the sound conditions aren't just right.

    As for the email obsession, we all do that. I just got a Droid phone for Christmas, so now I can check my emails instantly - really scary.