Wednesday, March 14, 2012

A Tidy Home, A Tidy Mind

I am ecstatic.

No, I have not sold a new series or won the lottery. My husband and I have finally caved in and hired a housekeeper to help keep our rambling apartment under control. Um. Not a daily (as we call them in England) – but someone who comes in regularly and puts our place in order.

Both my husband and I work full-time. He’s an Associate Creative Director for an advertising company and regularly works a seventy-hour week. Like many authors, I too have a full-time job and write in the mornings, evenings and at the weekends. With what precious free time we do have, cleaning house does not feature high as a priority.

Many people are fine about having their home in disarray and I say, lucky you. Personally, I can’t stand it. Maybe it’s a female thing. For me, an untidy house makes my mind spin and concentration hard. I’m easily distracted and if I’m sitting at my computer and there are dust bunnies turning cartwheels on my floor, believe me, they have to go.

So, it was with great joy that I came across a wonderful entry in one of my favorite books—The War of Art: Break Through The Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield.

A Professional Seeks Order

When I lived in the back of my Chevy van, I had to dig my typewriter out from beneath layers of tire tools, dirty laundry, and moldering paperbacks. My truck was a nest, a hive, a hellhole on wheels whose sleeping surface I had to clear each night just to carve out a foxhole to snooze in.

The professional cannot live like that. He is on a mission. He will not tolerate disorder. He eliminates chaos from his world in order to banish it from his mind. He wants the carpet vacuumed and the threshold swept, so the Muse may enter and not soil her gown.

6 comments:

Irene Bennett Brown said...

I so agree with your post, Hannah. I'm not a fanatic, but clutter fusses with my attempts to concentrate on my writing. It doesn't help that my husband never thinks to throw away junk mail and such -- when the trash basket is as close as the end of his arm! Thank goodness in every other instance he's a sweetheart.

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Hannah Dennison said...

Maybe it is a female thing! My husband doesn't seem to mind either - it was my constant nagging that made him cave in. I do feel my head is clearer when I am not distracted. Glad it was helpful!

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Donis Casey said...

In my humble opinion,The War of Art is one of the great books on writing ever written (as it were)

Donis Casey said...

In my humble opinion,The War of Art is one of the great books on writing ever written (as it were)