DEBORAH CROMBIE: Does anyone else remember this little book, published in 1994? Simplify Your Life, by Elaine St. James.
I bought it a year or two after it was published and it has lived in our downstairs bathroom ever since. (Everybody has stuff to read in their bathrooms, right?) Some of the suggestions were a little weird or impractical even then. Some of them just didn't suit me personally.
Downsize your house? We'd just bought a BIGGER house. And we're still in it, with no intention of moving any time soon, although some day we may have to consider it.
No pets? Not likely for us, and I still think the joy far outweighs the trouble and expense.
Rotate the same sensible all-black clothes every day? Dullsville. (And yet when I'm working at home, in the summer I rotate the same shorts and t-shirts, in the winter the same sweats. )
I have incorporated some other tips over the years. I consolidate shopping and errands whenever possible. I repeat menus, even down to the same things on the certain days of the week, which I used to think was incredibly boring. My closet is fairly organized. (You do not want to see my make-up drawer, however...) My housekeeping standards have declined drastically. I make lists--I cannot function at all without a list.
But why think about this book? I have been feeling particularly overwhelmed the last few months. Then, in a post earlier this week, Hallie mentioned that she only watched Netflix and movies. I suggested only half-jokingly that she should write a post on simplifying.
Then Wendy Corsi Staub said that she had written eighty books. EIGHTY. How, I wondered, is this possible?
And we all know how crazy Hank's schedule is--she works as an investigative reporter, writes, teaches, travels... It's mindboggling.
Rhys? Two books a year, at least, plus short stories, promoting, and switching houses between California and Arizona twice a year...
Lucy switches houses, too, plus writing and promoting and traveling.
Julia manages writing, traveling, teaching, promoting, along with the hugely demanding job of parenting two kids in college and one still at home. (Julia, we love The Youngest!)
Me? I haven't even finished my laundry from Bouchercon...
So I thought maybe that those of you who are more organized, or at least more efficient, might share a tip or two.
REDS, readers, throw me a scrap of wisdom for the sake of the novel-in-progress--and my sanity! Is there one single thing you do that makes your life more manageable?