Military Metaphors for Mental Mastery

I’m on a mission. The objective: to improve my speaking and my writing.

Tactical next step: memorise all first paragraphs from all essays out of David Sedaris’s book „The Best Of Me”, and from the book „Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?” by Raymond Carver. No pun intended with the title of the latter one. Gordon Lish (the editor) went to work mercilessly on those essays, attrition warfare style, last word standing. These paragraphs are worthy candidates, honourable guests to my to-be-built memory palace.

My first course of action would have been to copy all essay titles together with their first paragraphs into one document. Get everything neatly arranged. Set myself up to highlight, underline, group and ungroup, make notes, analyse, track my progress, and to produce statistics.

But then I figured I’m not in school anymore. No time for busy work. I should just… get the job done. I will start with one essay, the one that’s already open on my desk, from the middle of the book. Do that one first, then take it from there.