Silt: Editor’s Letter, August 2016

  • Posted on: August 8, 2016
  • By:

Has an idea ever entered your brain, only to slip right out again at the precise moment that you needed it? I have that feeling–and the following one, where you’re grasping at straws trying to remember what you had been thinking–often. I don’t know whether it’s an ADHD thing, or a tiredness thing, or just a function of how busy I am. Whatever it’s caused by, I lose a lot of good ideas (and probably some bad ones) to the sieve in my brain that allows them to fall through.

I have never been very good at journaling. I have dozens of half-filled notebooks I got bored with and left behind. When my friend suggested that I start a sketchbook, I did so reluctantly, convinced that it would soon join the ranks of my other partially completed journals.

Getting into the habit of drawing in a sketchbook was hard enough, but even once I did that I had no idea what should be writing down. It wasn’t until I just started carrying it around with me everywhere that it started to take form. I realized that the best use of my journal was just to use it to collect everything that would have fallen through the cracks of my mind otherwise. As I flip through my sketchbook, I see things that I just plain would have forgotten.

The New Oxford American Dictionary defines silt as “fine sand, clay, or other material carried by running water and deposited as a sediment, especially in a channel or harbor.” If my thoughts are silt then my sketchbook is the channel, and time is the water’s motion, the ever-moving conveyor belt that brings ideas into my mind and then back out again. I decided to scan some of my pages to share with you, so you can see what sort of things have been on my mind this month, and what sort of ideas I would have forgotten. Has anything fallen through the cracks in your life recently?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.