The Burden of Unfinished Things

Things that are unfinished are like abandoned things in a number of respects; they accumulate, and occupy spaces that could be free for other items or projects; they can also become the house for an entire ecology of thoughts to grow –and self-development to occur– that might not be possible otherwise. They are unlike abandoned things insofar as there is still living intention to finish them, and insofar as they have not grown into disrepair.

I have left too many post series here unfinished (it must seem that I have abandoned them! –though they weigh on me as constant sources of both pressure and stimulation for thought). Despite the best intentions, have been occupied with family, or work, or school, or friends, and now a puppy (and more than even all of these), to finish the 346 draft posts I have here, many of which are over 4k words, and nearly finished. I am usually discriminating in what I put out there, but will be moving forward to finish some of the older series in shorter order, regardless of whether they’re all properly polished.

This coming week I’ll be publishing part two (of two) of the Ullmann series (I began treating Ullmann here, resolved to create posts on him here, and then I put out part one of two). Part two is currently over 12k words, however, so that it must be broken up into sections to be posted over the course of the week.

Then I’ll finish the series on identity politics that I began (I have only published parts one, two, and two-point-five), for which I still have reading to do.

I presented a paper at the Pappas Patristics Institute several months back, and those who heard the paper loved it; I have a lot of reading to do before I feel comfortable releasing an edited version of it to the public, however, as it needs a great deal of re-writing in the light of other scholarship that has come to my attention. To that end, I’ll get to the post series on Gamble’s Books and Readers, probably after the identity politics series, and then move on to other preparatory posts.

Forgive me for my inconstant output on this channel, friends; I hope to share some of the fruits of what I’ve been doing here, and I hope it will be helpful when I do.

From there, there is so much left to do, and thinking about these topics, such as the Flags of the Dead series (parts one, two, three, and four are posted), has meant that the final posts in the several series will be much better than they otherwise would be. Most of the final posts in these series are already partially formed, but not finished — part five of The Flags of the Dead series, for example, is currently at 3.5k words — this gives me enough structure to know what questions to ask and pursue to get to the bottom of things, and enough of a focused space in which to reflect on the matter, drawing connections to other topics and showing their wider import.

There is value in holding off on publishing things, to let the ecology grow properly; there is value in dialogue, to clarify the thought, and to keep the ecology healthy, full of air and sunlight. I worry that I have erred towards letting things grow outside of the light here!


Header image found here

11 thoughts on “The Burden of Unfinished Things

  1. This looks like a strange coincidence. Not having seen any updates in my e-mail from your blog for about five weeks, I looked in a few hours ago. Now you are posting again. Does a visit become a stimulus to write, or is it just plain coincidence?

    Liked by 1 person

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