I’ve been on Google Docs, which is now part of Google Drive, since the beta version became available. (Was that 2007?) I do most of my writing in that environment, whether collaborative and individual. I’ve lost track of what I’ve stored there.
Recently, I was searching for a document I knew was in there, and I came across one with an unfamiliar title, “toc: Jane’s World.” While I don’t recall the moment of this file’s creation, I recognized the contents immediately. It’s an annotated table of contents of a book of essays I imagined writing and publishing. There is a list of 11 titles with short descriptions of them after.
The table of contents was aspirational, I could see. The titles of essays were mere drafts; I’ve thought of better ones since. What really made me happy was to realize that 5 of the 11 essays were since completed and published, and one is well underway.
I worry a lot that, with time being fragmented by work and personal responsibilities and activities, no writing gets done. This lost and found table of contents makes me realize that writing is getting done.
Though many of my professional hours are spent as a teacher, I am still a writer. The list is akin to a letter written by the self years ago. I’m sending her a thank you note.