I thought cutting down on words, generally refining my literature review for my university dissertation and turning it inside out, was like cutting off a literary limb. That was then.
Now, I am de-cluttering. I have filled a tall recycling bin through this week with the reading material I spent hours of my life pouring over, analysing and exploiting for quotes. Did I really read all that quantity of stuff? I must have done. The job is not finished yet. There are still three ring binders to filter and slim down. I want to merge five bulging ring binders into two. It means I must be ruthless and dispose of the masses of evidence of what I had to do to achieve my goal. I know deep down, I am going to have to eventually dispose of the reduced level of material I am holding on to as well. I cannot quite let it all go, not yet. At some stage, maybe all I will be left with, will be the course assignments and the copies of the final bound work I presented to the external examiners.
Old emotions have been stirred up from their resting place; this time though, I am not just refining my words, I am turfing out much of my work, literally cutting down the material and turning it from the inside to out.