A website about writing, ageing, learning and well-being

This is a multipurpose website where every topic is linked to another. Let’s talk about writing, ageing, and well-being, and how they interact.

  •  I’m fascinated by the ways we use writing to solve problems and improve our health and happiness. Blogging is a case in point.
  • I think about my own advancing age, fear it, relish it, and brace myself for the years ahead. You may be doing this too.

My web profile: trying to focus here

Writer. Teacher. Older. I didn’t see the last one coming. That’s crazy… but it’s  human.

Class of 5S Christchurch Girls' High School 1954
At this stage I was already a writer. Christchurch Girls High School, 1954. (That face was torn off by accident, not on purpose.)

In the early days on the web, every new project or group or role demanded that I set up another website, write another book, open another social media account, until my brain was a hundred open tabs flapping in the wind.

 

Muehlenbeckia astonii: a tangle of wiry twigs with tiny leaves
Muehlenbeckia astonii: this New Zealand plant grows by endless divarication and connnections

Divarication as a professional strategy

Do you know about New Zealand’s marvellous divaricating shrubs? Instead of growing as a trunk and branches and sub-branches and twigs, they grow by a process of endless splitting. There’s no hierarchy, just a mass of twiglets crocheting themselves together into a dense anarchic ball. (The evolutionary justification was that this growth pattern prevented bushes from being eaten by moa.)

heavy-footed-moa-te-papa-by-paul-martinson
Heavy-footed moa (pachyornus elephantopus). Image 2006-0010-1/20 from the series ‘Extinct birds of New Zealand’ Masterton. nzbirdsonline.org.nz

That’s the way I have lived my professional life. There are benefits: I’ve had fun, achieved a lot, and never been pecked by a moa. For years, online proliferation was my pattern.

Stop cluttering up cyberspace!

In 2016 I was on the verge of creating yet another website for a single project. Epiphany! A little voice said, “Stop! Surely your WordPress site can accommodate this. Just make it work.” And so it does.

The muehlenbeckia bush close up appears to be in a dither of indecision… but stand back and you’ll see it holistically as a strong structure with a striking, colourful texture. It’s built on connections, like a blog.

Hence this website, which aspires to be my only website.