Baby steps, baby!

4 days and counting to the daily February Oscar’s Gift reading guide!

Thank you to everyone who helped to spread the word about this past weekend’s Oscar free ebook promotion. If you enjoy the story, please consider purchasing the paperback, liking the book on Amazon, or even posting a review.

What baby steps have you taken lately?

I realized this morning that I have posted daily entries on Aunt Hattie’s Diary now for a full four weeks. There were a few days when I had to play catch-up and do two or three days at once, but rather than let the perfect be the enemy of the good and throw up my hands in defeat, I forged ahead imperfectly, without looking back.

I began to post entries from my great aunt’s diaries nearly three years ago (!) at a different blog address. For several months I posted daily or nearly so, but, after awhile, I lost focus and had a hard time knowing how to choose entries to share. The process felt haphazard, and then weeks or even months would go by without so much as a word. My thinking was, I’d already messed up and missed my goal, so why bother?

This was not what Hattie herself would have done. She wrote in her diaries every single day for at least thirty-seven years (there are several volumes of her diaries written pre-1920 that were lost or destroyed). She wrote when she was well and when she was sick, when life was good and when it wasn’t. She wrote with the most delightful imperfection. Most of all, she wrote diligently and with an unfailing purpose that I am still trying to understand.

Aunt Hattie's Diaries
Aunt Hattie’s Diaries

That’s why every time I was overwhelmed as I looked at her 77 volumes (pictured above), each page filled front and back, I felt more than a little guilty. Hattie herself would have found a way.

My new system of sharing entries from 60, 70, 80 and 90 years ago each day is working. It’s focused and purposeful and allows readers to follow threads from day to day, but it’s also made up of baby steps, breaking down the monumental project of transcribing over 13,000 days of entries to a much more manageable task.

Hattie would approve.

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