The Unbearable Plague of Ideas

When JK Rowling said that Harry Potter walked into her head one day fully formed with a life of his own, I thought, “Oh, I know how that feels.”  Alas, the next Harry Potter has not walked into my head, but Big Ideas traipse around in there on a continual basis.

Today, my to-do list has surpassed epic absurdity to become something more along the lines of the Finngans Wake of to-do lists.  I don’t believe it has a beginning or an end.

And what have I been doing?  I’ve been on Yahoo Domains registering www.trailingeudora.org.

I have an idea, and I don’t think it is going to turn me loose.  I just hope I can hold off until at least spring break before it makes me put everything else aside to work on it and only it.

Trailing Eudora will be a site devoted to Eudora Welty of course.   The idea of trailing came about simply enough…sort of.  I wanted to take my new camera and visit places around Mississippi where Eudora Welty lived, worked, photographed, and wrote.  I want to take pictures of the Windsor Ruins as they are now and the Belhaven Jitney as it is now.  Her beauty shop, her cafe, the Natchez Trace that she wrote about, the Mississippi Delta that shows up in stories and photographs.  All of that I want to photoblog.

Then I started thinking about making a Google Map of my travels around the state.  Then I started thinking about adding other kinds of trails to the site:  a memory trail of oral histories from people who knew her or met her; a reading trail of personal responses to her writing; a student trail of class projects; a teaching trail of lesson ideas; a scholar’s trail of work about Welty.  You see how a newborn idea can grow so fast.

I’ve just spent the first $10 on accepting this idea into my life.  I figure it will cost me about $2000 before it is done.  But it seems a necessary expense in this moment.

If anyone wants to partner up on this, let me know.  I wouldn’t mind having other people contribute scholarly articles, photographs, reading responses, lesson plans, and student projects.

If anyone who is an expert WordPress user would like to help me plan the design and get the site up and running, let me know.

If anyone would like to give me a grant to help put it together, let me know that too, but I don’t have time to write a proposal right now.

There you go.  Here’s hoping writing it down will at least allow me to divert some attention toward to the to-do list for a little while.