The Minimalist Woman is Turning Two
The Eye of the Minimalist Beholder
Adjusting the focus of a blog is a common, and also natural, occurrence. Some folks would say this blog doesn’t have much of a focus at all–it doesn’t lay out strategies for self-improvement, doesn’t get much into the how-to, doesn’t claim to be particularly helpful, and wanders around topics from clutter to relationships to knitting to politics, with occasional forays into clothes and trips down Memory Lane. In that sense, it certainly isn’t Minimalist.
Are you like me? Do you find yourself interested in a zillion different things, and wonder about their interconnectedness? It’s all out there and in ourselves; all these things we’re aware of–and not aware of–make up the world we live in. Making sense of it is as much a need as eating and sleeping, and it causes us to search out books and blogs and even write books and blogs, or channel it into painting, meditation, gardening, whatever.
Over time, this blog has moved from sharing my process of minimalizing possessions, clutter and activities to establishing a fairly consistent focus on essays from a Minimalist’s point of view. This means my point of view is of someone who now very rarely shops, has stepped back from consumerism, has gotten rid of a lifetime’s worth of clutter and takes pains to not accumulate more, lives in a comfortable but uncluttered small house, cooks simply with a minimum of equipment, and who has reined in multiple lines of employment to work from home as a writer. Life is definitely better with this less-is-more approach, more focused, more serene, and more naturally productive.
All those changes had an impact on my perspective. The realization of how much time, money, and effort I’d wasted in the course of my life thanks to consumerism made me think in turn of the role the acquisition of stuff has played in different relationships I’ve had, from marriage to parents to friends and colleagues. And it made me think, as well, of society as a whole, of our culture, our economy, our ecology, and our political issues.
All those changes also had an impact on my working life. Writing this blog enabled me to move from journaling to writing essays and ebooks, and more recently to return to writing fiction after a 30-year hiatus. There’s room in my head now, as well as in my life, to take an idea and turn it into a story, and to hopefully grow the craft in my own unique way. The one advantage of fiction over nonfiction is dimensionality, the presence of elements that are not part of dialectic, but which are part of the more inexplicable sides of human experience. It’s another way to make sense of it all, if in no other way than to connect with unreasonable truth.
So this blog will keep on keeping on in its own esoteric way, a place for those interested in what happens in this writer’s head–both directly and indirectly–after the decluttering, after the downsizing, after stepping back from the whole mad circus of consumerist culture. Sometimes I’ll post an update about what I’m working on or what I’ve published.
I’ve got a usually-daily Twitter “newspaper” called, of course, The Minimalist Woman Daily, containing linkposts from people I follow, mostly other Minimalists, writers and editors, a couple of artists, a couple of liberals, and some earth-huggers. It’s totally free. I find it handy to grab the best range of what people are tweeting about without having to scroll through the silly stuff. You can subscribe to it and/or click on the link to create your own paper.
Google+ has a couple advantages over blogging. One is the ease of discovering new blogs or writers in your areas of interest. The other is less spam in the comments. The latter is becoming an issue for me, so I’m considering the suggestion of some other Minimalist writers to close the comments on the blog itself, but open them up in Google+. I do not know if this will be a permanent arrangement, but more and more of the bloggers I follow are doing this and liking it a lot. Let me know what you think, or if you have done it yourself.
Anyway, that’s the state of the MW blog, which will be celebrating its second birthday next week Onwards and Upwards! And thanks so much for coming along for the ride.
(Note: the original post said third birthday, which happened for two reasons: there was an earlier Blogspot version of this blog, and there has been much discussion this week about whether the roof was repaired two or three years ago, as it is leaking again, and I was writing this as we were dealing with the contractors. You know how it goes. Sorry about that.)