Manuscript Disposal

Today I decided to have a bit of a clean out. It’s amazing how many copies of my manuscript I’ve accumulated over the years. The early versions brought a hot flush to my cheeks because I could plainly see the errors on each page. Not spelling errors, although there were a few of those too, but general writing errors. 🙁

They say writing cannot be learned, but I believe that’s a heap of hogwash. You can learn the craft and I have learned a lot over the years. Practice brings experience and knowledge, if you are persistent.

Anyway, I was talking about having a clean out. All those early versions have been collecting dust and cobwebs for years, so I wanted to discard them. Now that is an easy statement to make yet think about it. Do you drop your entire manuscript into a garbage bin and walk away? If you do, you’re nothing like me. I tore three complete manuscripts into pieces. Each time I discarded the torn paper, I dropped the paper in my left hand into one garbage bag and the paper in my right hand into another garbage bag. 🙂

I’m not taking any risks. When I’d finished, I still wasn’t entirely happy, so I took half the paper from each bag and put them in two more bags.

It gets worse.

One bag of paper was placed in the big bin which will be emptied into the Council truck tomorrow night. Each Monday, I will throw another bag out until all four bags have been disposed of.

Am I insane? What’s the likelihood of someone (especially a writer) waiting for my garbage to be thrown out just in case a manuscript was in there? Am I being paranoid?

Of course not, I’m being cautious and I’m doing something that will make it easier for me to sleep tonight because I won’t have to worry about some insane person sticking 800 sheets of A4 paper together (which has been torn to shreds) to steal my story. Besides, I’m a writer, I’m allowed to do strange things. 😉

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