Helen (heleninwales) wrote,

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Books out, books in

Yesterday I took a bag of books to work. A colleague in the business department is getting his students to run a second hand book stall to raise money for charity. This seemed like a good way of getting rid of a few books from my shelf.

Once upon a time I never parted with a book, but I only have finite shelf space and once it became full, I had to start operating a one-in-one-out policy. Books sometimes had to go!

My criteria for parting with a book are:

  • Will I ever read this book again?

  • Is this book useful for reference purposes? (This applies to fiction I might want to refer to ways of doing stuff like POV or description. It can be done well or done badly, as long as I can learn from it.)

  • Do I have any sentimental attachment to the book as an object?

If the answer to all three questions is "No" then the book goes otherwise it stays.

So having got rid of seven or eight books, with another couple waiting to go to the second-hand book shop in case he might give me a couple of quid for them, I can now buy more books! :)

I have ordered 3 titles from Amazon, namely: Self-Editing for Fiction Writers, Do It Tomorrow and Other Secrets of Time Management and Ride the Right Horse.

I seem to recall several writer friends recommending the Self-Editing book, so I thought I'd try it out. I'm very fond of How To books. Even if I violently disagree with them, they tend to get me motivated. :)

Do It Tomorrow looks as though it's quite similar to Getting Things Done in terms of task management. I now swear by the GTD method. It's really improved my management of day job work, though it's not had quite such a big impact on stuff I have to do at home, which is why I thought the Do It Tomorrow might help. Apparently it's full of little mental tricks to help you get started on stuff, which is my big problem. I mean even now I'm sitting here writing blog posts instead of scrubbing the kitchen. *Sigh*

Ride the Right Horse comes recommended by coneycat. Having read her review of the book, I realised that a lot of my problems with Rhodri were down to the fact that he wasn't the right personality type for me. I may never have another horse. I'm not going to start riding again at my age, but I do have dreams of getting one or two very small ponies and working them and breaking them to drive. This may remain as dreams, but if I were to undertake the project, I want to avoid falling into all the pitfalls I fell into last time.

In other news, Spring is back in my part of the world! The sky is cloudless blue and it actually smelled like spring when I put my nose outside the back door, that lovely fresh smell of damp earth and new leaves drifting on a cool breeze. I must get out for a walk or cycle ride this afternoon while it lasts. Forecast not so good for tomorrow.

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