back to basics


2015 is going to be about simplicity and balance. I’ve started by clearing out my closet and drawers (a much-needed task) and removing everything that went unused for the past year, that never quite fit, that never looked quite right, that I received as a present but didn’t really like, and that I own more than one of (in other words, how many scarves and water bottles do I really need?). This amounts to a lot of stuff to be donated. I regularly cull, but it’s been a while since I went for a full-scale de-cluttering of the bedroom and kitchen. My closet and cabinets are so much easier to sort through now that I can actually see what’s available.

Next on my agenda, a serious look at my shelves. I managed to eliminate a lot of grad school books when I moved out two years ago, but books tend to multiply like bunnies in my place… and while the idea of wall-to-wall shelves is lovely in theory, it just doesn’t work for me. I am not averse to weeding and know when it’s time to let go.

To manage the process without becoming overwhelmed, I joined Apartment Therapy’s January Cure and hope to have a neat and tidy apartment by the end of the month.

I’m also making a concerted effort to adopt a new workout and writing routine. I’ve been unhappy with some of the changes that I’ve experienced in the last few months since taking on my new job and I’ve come to accept that there are limits on my time that I just can’t help. I just don’t have the time to workout for an hour and write for two on weekdays. I’m lucky to find the time to workout at all in the mornings, so I’m just going to aim for short morning workouts and 1-2 hours of writing in the evenings. Small steps are better than none. I can’t go back to the amount of productivity and time that I had in the past, not so long as I have a 2 hour commute and life responsibilities. There was a luxury to living at home and working fifteen minutes away that I didn’t learn to appreciate until it was too late.

This month, I’m working on finding little ways to be purposeful and enjoy the little things. This means taking a step back and assessing my goals and ways to meet them, rather than diving in without a plan and crashing headlong into the tangled mess of trying to make sense of it. Simple, balanced, and purposeful, that’s what I’m going for.

Author: emilia grace

romance writer and bibliophile

5 thoughts on “back to basics”

  1. (Also, I agree with you re: wall to wall shelves. I’ve discovered that I only like to hold on to those few books that I love and reread. I don’t need the others, and prefer the library!)

    1. Me too! I was brainwashed by the idea that I needed to have all these books to make me look smart and it was just too much to handle in such a small space.


      I do not want people to be agreeable, as it saves me the trouble of liking them. –Jane Austen

      On Tue, Jan 6, 2015 at 7:06 AM, marginalia and such… wrote:


  2. I recently designed a day planner to keep track of my writing and exercise. For my writing, I count editing and outlining as “writing” work, as well as actually writing. Doing so really helps me remember that even if I’m not producing more words for a project, I’m still getting somewhere and working on it. I’m glad I’m both poor and not a hardcore bibliophile, otherwise I’d have way too many books too. I prefer supporting libraries instead of purchasing books (unless they’re superduperamazingawesomeomg good).

    Good luck! Maybe I should follow suit and make 2015 about simplicity and balance… but I haven’t even properly acknowledged that it’s now 2015, aha.

    1. Hi Coryl! I count all planning, editing, and outlining as well. I think of it as “incubating” and remind myself that every little bit counts. I started using a desk calendar a couple of years ago and it serves as a great reminder of the progress I’ve made during the year; sometimes my perception is way off and looking at the calendar grounds me in reality.


      I do not want people to be agreeable, as it saves me the trouble of liking them. –Jane Austen

      On Tue, Jan 6, 2015 at 4:55 PM, marginalia and such… wrote:


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