Friday, May 20, 2011

Spring Cleaning

The Victoria Day long weekend is a perfect opportunity to commit to a little spring cleaning, both in your home and in your life. In the "spirit of the season," I'm dusting off (sorry for the pun) an old favourite from my days at BellaOnline: Canadian Culture.

Book Review/Interview
Unclutter Your Life by Katherine Gibson

Katherine Gibson knows a thing or two about pushing clutter out of her life. In fact, the British Columbina author wrote the book on clutter busting--and not just in the physical sense. From the cover image of crisp white linens to the inner pages with plenty of white space, Unclutter Your Life: Transforming Your Physical, Mental and Emotional Space is a testament to the values it promotes. And Gibson keeps the contents orderly and concise. The book is broken down into three main sections: Physical Clutter, Mental Clutter, and Emotional Clutter. The last two sections are where she really sets herself apart from others in this field.

"A lot of the books out today are dealing with organizing our possessions," Gibson says. She wanted to go a step or two farther and explore the ways in which our inner lives are cluttered, too.

The mental and emotional clutter in a person's life can be just as detrimental as the more obvious physical signs. This book explores all three aspects equally. If you often find yourself running late, battling insomnia, or moving one thing to get to another, there's something here for you.

While based in part on research and interviews, Unclutter Your Life is no mere theoretical exercise. The book is linked to the lives of Gibson and her family, who practice the lessons taught within its pages. One of their most noteworthy changes was the removal of the household television.

"I did find that the book led me in some interesting directions," she says. "I realized how much our lives had changed because TV was no long part of our lives."

Gibson offers this added piece of advice to anyone who wants to achieve a less cluttered existence. "Visualize the life they want to have. From that moment forward, every action they take should move in that direction," adding, "You have to really, really want to do it."

Unclutter Your Life is the sort of book every person should have...and not just collecting dust on a shelf (or tying up space on your Kindle).

Friday, May 13, 2011

Blogger, Blogger...Who's Got the Blogger?

Are we all feeling better now that Blogger is (almost) back to normal?

Admittedly, the world didn’t stop spinning, but more than a few of my online associates were bemoaning the site’s prolonged “read only” status.

Blogger went down for maintenance yesterday afternoon. They stayed down for about 20 hours and ate a few recent blog posts in the process (including one of mine, which returned briefly then vanished again, taking a second one with it in the process).

In their most recent status updates, Blogger says the posts had to be temporarily removed in order for the site to be fixed and that they're now working to restore those posts. From what I've been able to pick up from online chatter, some bloggers are finding their posts restored in draft form, but some of those posts are incomplete.

I'm still waiting for my last two posts -- on The Golden Rage and The Roving Genealogist -- to return. Both can be recreated with relative ease, but it's still annoying to think that my interview with the writers of the new Moon Girl limited series will have to be formatted again.

All in all, a bad day for Blogger. We'll keep our fingers crossed that the problem is fully resolved and that the site will now run smoothly for the foreseeable future.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Back to Blogging x 4

It's been over a year since I posted anything on this blog, so why have I created three more?

I have a few key interests that I've wanted to blog about for some time, including genealogy, comics books (particulary from the Golden Age) and poetry. There are others, of course, but in terms of blogging, I figured I should start at the top.

Rather than shoehorn them into this blog -- where only poetry really fits but comics have crept in from time to time -- I decided to branch out with specialized blogs:
All three are up and running, so please check them out if you're interested in the topics. I welcome comments and contributions on all four blogs. Want to be interviewed or contribute a guest blog? Drop me a line with a quick pitch about how you'd fit into one of the topics.

Finally, please spread the word to your online friends. A blog is only as good as its readers, after all. Without you, I might as well stick to writing in my journal. ;-)