Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Revising the Garden

Slice 30

Thank you to the Two Writing Teachers 

Clean up, clean up, everybody, the song goes.  I witnessed many neighbors contributing to the clean up process in their yards as the beautiful weather stopped by for a short visit.  I heard tractors starting up, leaf blowers humming and hoses washing things down.  Jumping in on the process, Natalie and I worked at cleaning out the day lily garden yesterday.

We began the process by gathering our equipment-garden gloves, rakes, scoops, and yard waste bags.  We familiarized ourselves with our garden patch after its long winter's rest.  We tromped through the thick, wet soil and made our way to the corner where we began pulling out the crunchy oak leaves that added to the mulch blanket.  Swish after swish, we combed through the tangled mess.  After half way through, the garden had worn Natalie down and she gave up, running off to play at the swings.  Who could blame her?  This was hard work.
I knew I would triumph over the leaf litter and kept it going.  I noticed weeds were beginning to pop up-so I pulled them out before they began the early take over and squatting where they aren't allowed.  I noticed early risers-flagging attention to where lilies will soon begin to grow.  I noticed trumpet vines that have to go...but I had to stay focused on today's work!

Seven bags later, I finished the job.  I gave a final browse over the area and realized there's still more to be done...but for today, the revising process ended.  

As I reflected on this slice, it reminded me of the work writers do when they revise.  Gathering tools, getting the birds eye view of the piece, narrowing the focus, taking out and achieve the finished piece-realizing sometimes (most times) it will need multiple re-works to get it just right.  Revising means a lot of hard work and a lot of time to get it to the place of near perfection.  
What do you think?


  1. I love the analogy -- sometimes we need to weed as well. I find I often take out - or weed - once I step back from a piece for awhile. I often write too much on the first draft. Thanks for this reflection - I think analogies really help people connect with what they are trying to do.

  2. It works... and after the revisions, the flower blooms!

  3. Wonderful analogy, and it is hard work to clean out, the garden and the words! Thanks for sharing the pictures, Amy.

  4. Great analogy Amy! I love gardening because after all the hard work you can step back and see what you have accomplished and then continue to see it grow and blossom! Unlike cleaning house which never seems to last ;-)


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