I just finished reading Writing Magic by Gail Carson Levine. Even though it is a writing book written for children I still learned a lot.
One of her tips that really struck me was—Save EVERYTHING you write.
She, of course, is writing this book for kids, so why would she tell them, “don’t discard your writing lightly”?
I’m just going to quote her book because she puts it so beautifully.
I used to think long ago, that when I grew up, I’d remember what it felt like to be a child and that I’d always be able to get back to my child self. But I can’t. When you become a teenager, you step onto a bridge. The opposite shore is adulthood. Childhood lies behind. The bridge is made of wood. As you cross it burns behind you. If you save what you write, you still won’t be able to cross back into childhood. But you’ll be able to see yourself in that lost country. You’ll be able to wave to yourself across that wide river.
This is so profound to me, and I think it applies to all of us. I’ve been though incredibly hard trials in my life, but not that I am through them the edge is gone—my burden had been eased and I can only remember what it was like to feel the pain.
But when I go back and read what I wrote in those times I can feel it all again.
So listen to Gail :) Save everything. You never know when an old experience will need to be relived.