I can’t throw away paper

Hi everyone,

We’ve been having quite a time the last few days. We lost internet service on Saturday and AT&T took a while to come to our rescue. Finally got back up last evening. Hopefully we won’t have this problem again. Meanwhile I was amazed at how much other work got done when my only contact was via my phone. I’m horribly inept at that so with the extra time my de-cluttering project zipped along.

Sandy and I have spent hours (and hours!) going through old files, pulling stuff from beneath chairs and behind doors. I found a bunch of Barnes & Noble posters from various times when I’ve signed – clear back to 1993 in New York City. Out they went. Found maps of two caves I’ve explored. They stayed. Boxes that electronic gadgets came in. Out. Scratch pads in every size and shape. They stayed.

And that’s a real issue. Is it just me? I can’t throw away paper that hasn’t been used yet. That goes for little bitty shirt-pocket pads, bigger ones that tend to show up in guest speaker bags, hardbound ones that I frequently stuff in pants pockets or in the glove box or scatter around the house. In the midst of keeping all these pads, I actually went to an office supply store and bought a packet of the large tablets that fit into my hardbound folders that I use to write early drafts. I have four of them and they’re all now fully loaded and ready again. What a great feeling. Like filling all the soap dishes at the same time. I’m ready, man!

I cannot throw this pad away!

If I do there’ll come a day

I’ll know exactly what to say,

And what would I do without paper?


I need to keep this lovely pad.

Tossing it would be so sad,

I know I’d wish I never had!

What would I do without paper?


Paper makes a writer bold,

He trusts it with his written gold,

So all these pads I have to hold.

What would I do without paper?


Ideas strike wherever I go,

Wit and wisdom need to flow

On something that can catch them, so

What would I do without paper?


I count on my computer, too,

But sometimes keyboards I eschew

When nothing but a pad will do,

And that’s why I need paper!








18 comments on “I can’t throw away paper

    • Sorry about this spacing. No idea what to do about it yet. Part of the suddenly all new format.

      I’m the same about scratching out notes and revisions so hideous it would take forever for anyone else to decode.

  1. I love this! You are not alone! I have drawers full of unused, half-used, still-able-to-be-used notebooks and pads — cannot throw them away! (And, perhaps worse, I can’t resist acquiring new ones!) When I became a member of the Nottingham Writers’ Studio, I found that my “dirty little secret” was shared by many.

  2. I’m with you. I still have A4 paper we bought when we lived in Australia 20 years ago! Prize for longest living pad of paper? Hank gets tons of pads from the charities he contributes to…personalized of course 😊 Who could throw those away??

  3. I have the same problem with collecting paper of all sizes; before I throw a printed piece away, I cut and save the clean area. Growing up, all the paper I had was my school tablet, so all my life paper is very important to be.

  4. Sounds like Verizon took care of you when AT&T was lost. Proud of you using a smart phone. But all mobile devices are for seeing, not CREATING! Wisely, you all know to lean into wood pump and leave your mark, scent, music for the artists to savor. Brain musings that pull heart strings.Bravo!!

    • Thank you, Jeanne. I marvel at how much can be accomplished via a smart phone in the hands of those who know how to make them go choo-choo. As for me, I lumber along doing what I can and whine until I’m back online.

  5. I seem to accumulate so many of those little pads of paper, too, but have found a way of using them. My granddaughters draw, play store, make place mats for their animals,etc. out of them. They are getting used! Glad you got your internet back, but if I wasn’t online so much, I do think more would get done in other ways!

    • Good ideas for putting those impudent blank sheets to work. Serves them right for thinking they were always going to be safe! I can testify that without Internet I get tons more work done, but it isn’t as much fun!

  6. Being the child of hoarders, I sometimes feel compelled to toss out perfectly usable, lovely paper, but I have to be in a pretty ruthless mood before I actually DO. I helps knowing that 1. I’m taking it to the recycler & 2. I won’t wind up like poor old Mom PHD [Piled Higher & Deeper]

    • So you’re on the road to recovery. Hard I know. Someone needs to write a 7-steps method to give up paper addiction.

  7. Oh, yes, yes, yes! A fellow paper hoarder and
    pad adore-er. I knew there was a deeper reason we are friends, besides the fact that you are adorable.

    • Hey Pat! I knew you would be a hoarder too! Thanks for coming clean. All of which reminds me, I’m eager for our next visit! XO

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