Organised Chaos

This entry is part 5 of the series Florida 2010

Life is nothing if not interesting. My first couple of nights back in the work place proved wonderful I’m blessed to have this job. I work a 12- hour shift but have plenty free time during the night. Instead of knitting or reading in between rounds, I take my laptop and write. There’s no on-line distractions, only around 60 patients/residents in the Frail Care section. And they mostly sleep—unlike the Internet.

Of course, on duty I had no access to the web and this proved to be a good thing. I couldn’t get distracted by what others were doing around the world.

I designed my first-ever one-sheet for one of the books I’m hoping to pitch at the Florida Christian Writers Conference in (gulp!) 174 days. (That’s when I leave home.) In addition to Rise and Soar I had Victory over Cancer, a narrative of my year in treatment. I was convinced that the Lord had plans for Rise and Soar, although I intended to have Victory with me as well.
Then one night, I started to assemble my book of meditations. That’s when I discovered the awful truth. I have organised myself into well-categorised chaos.
  • I’ve completed over 90 devotions. I have a careful list of them all, complete with a one sentence summary of each message.
  • I’ve edited 16 of them, and they’re safely in a folder entitled “Edited Devotions” which is a sub-folder of “Cancer Devotions”.
  • The other 70+ are written, titled and saved. Now all I need to do is find them. Where have I put them?

Here are some of the challenges:

  • I have several folders for the devotions, each with their own sub-folders. Why? I have no idea. It obviously seemed a good plan at the time.
  • In my super-efficient mode, I have learned to synchronise the folders between my computer and my laptop using XP’s Briefcase. It works brilliantly. But I’ve only done certain folders. Another why. Is it possible I have synchronised in the wrong direction and lost some? Oh please no.
  • Where I wrote the initial devotions in yWriter, I have since saved them into different formats for editing. But, I’ve used two different programmes: MS Word and Open Office.

So that’s easy, right? I can do a search. Absolutely. But here are the next two challenges.

  • When I completed my Book Proposal, I improved many of the titles.
  • I also used two computers — my desktop and my laptop.
I’ve been working (and searching) on my laptop at work so I’m praying—hard—that the missing devotions are safely on my desktop at home. All I need to do is find them.


I wonder if this is a specific Shirley-idiocy, or if others have also organised themselves into chaos. Any comments?