Thursday, February 2, 2012

Bedside blogging: surplusage

Sometimes I think I should sign Gretchen Rubin's name along with mine at the conclusion of my posts. Essentially this makes me the jerk in the group who texted and played Words with Friends while the smart and interesting kid did all the work.

What I'm saying is I get a lot of ideas and, I think, happiness from Ms Rubin's book and website, The Happiness Project.

A year ago, I purchased her book, The Happiness Project. Her memoir of a year spent on becoming happier is one of my favorite non-fiction reads. Wait. Move your arrow away from that X, this isn't a book review. It's Thursday night and I'm blogging from bed, noone writes anything substantial in those conditions.

On the subject of writing and Gretchen, Gretchen also produces an internet piece to her book. Her Happiness Project blog, daily newsletter, and (my favorite) daily moment of happiness are always chock full of interesting and uplifting content. It's also completely free.

Below are some reasons why GR would be my first round pick for an author fantasy league:

She writes about writing. How difficultly awesome is that? Remember, I'm duvet deep right now; a certain amount of leniency for potentially made up adverbs like difficultly is appreciated. In the past, she has posted tips for writing from famous authors like Mark Twain and Flannery O'Connor (see below):

Three of Mark Twain's Little rules for Writing:
7. An author should say what he is proposing to say, not merely come near it.

8. Use the right word, not its second cousin. *(tenth grade offenders take note: he,she,it, this, and that are all the boring second cousins noone wants to sit with at Thanksgiving.)

9. Eschew surplusage. (Peppernpoppy is a repeat offender of this rule: see the explanation of not-pants if you're wondering what I mean. If you're still not sure, google surplusage. I did. I also had to look up eschew.)

10. Not omit necessary details. (Get it?!? Oh Mr. Twain, if John Steinbeck and I weren't meant for one another, I'd seriously consider letting you take me on a riverboat picnic.)

Her Moment of Happiness daily email rocks my socks off...daily. MOH emails consist of one inspirational quote from famous authors, philosophers, and the like about happiness. This email arrives in my inbox every morning and I look forward to it. I save the especially good ones in a memo on my phone. I've used them in class, I've texted them to friends who have much better things to do, and they have proven useful and poignant in random situations.

Her emails and posts are full of useful and fun links. From links to controlling clutter and creating a budget to tumblers of interesting and calming photography, her website is a truly wonderful place to "waste time" on the interweb. Although, according to Bertrand Russell, "The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time."

Go on, guess where I got that one from.

My weekend looks to be filled with bleachers packed with maniacal wrestling parents, plunging v-necks and bowling shoes, and football and four-leggers. I personally cannot wait.

and Gretchen Rubin

Keally P and I are embarking on a February Photo A Day challenge, so far so fun. I was a bit late to the party so I started with Day 2. Join in!

No comments:

Post a Comment