Monday, 14 June 2010

Bird by bird, brick by brick

One of my favorite books on writing is Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird. I always remember her title-worthy story whenever I feel overwhelmed in the creative process: when her younger brother was staying up all night to finish a report about birds he'd procrastinated on, her father encouraged him by saying, "Bird by bird, buddy." Yes, there may be a lot of birds that need to go into that report, and yes, some of the most glorious birds might be hardest to pin down (I'm thinking of you, peacock!), but one by one, they'll enter.

Right now, my birds are the jobs, homes and cars we're trying to pin down in our recent move to Seattle. Even with my ultra-organized spreadsheet (!), settling down and making this place our own threatens to overwhelm. But just focusing on one bird at a time helps me to maintain a very nice calm in the storm - bird by bird, brick by brick, we'll build our Seattleite life.

Anyway, I started looking for nice bird pictures for this post and found so many that I thought I'd present you a winged mini-gallery. I hope you enjoy them and they can help you to remember to pin down all your flapping birds one at a time this week too.

Also, just wanted to let you know about some of the posts I've got coming up. I've been thinking about my niche a lot lately and am going to come out with much clearer focus in the next few weeks. And with my 30th birthday a month away (exactly today!), I'm thinking about what I'd say in a letter to my 15-year-old self that I'll be sharing next week. So, lots coming up here.

What about you? What are the birds you're grabbing at this week, taming one by one?

{Photos from flickr by simply photoBunny Cuddler, Katey Nicosia, Picnic by Ellie, & pompomrouge (prev. twolimeleaves)}


Rachael Randal said...

I do love that approach to taking on something huge and daunting. Bird by bird, this week I will aim to write another 5 pages of my book :-)

Looking forward to reading your letter to young Alisha!

Jenny said...

i used the phrase bird by bird today and thought of you...

i'm so glad you're back in Seattle!

TheLadyWhoLunches said...

Love that idea. I'm still feeling like that with my book, and know I will feel like that in just four short weeks!
It is hard though, isn't it? I can feel the zen pouring out of you!

Nadine said...

Good luck with your birds! And I can't wait to read your letter to your 15 year old self!

Anonymous said...

I love Anne Lamott, and "bird by bird" is a phrase I return to often.

My birds are my job, throwing two parties for friends in the next week, time with my husband, and planning a trip soon. Also the daily tasks of writing, cooking, taking care of myself. Bird by bird. Brick by brick.

alisha said...

Honestly I've been thinking about birds all week now. :)

Shannon of ** Happiness Is...** said...

Aw, I just love that saying, bird by bird. So true (and cute). Very exciting about the big 3-0 coming up. I turned last year and boy, you must go all out. You deserve it :) The 30's are the best years... just wait! xo

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