Why my next book would make a terrible gift



My next book probably won’t be ready by Thanksgiving after all, which has been my goal all year long. However, one of my motivations for choosing that deadline was so it would be available for holiday gift-giving. And it finally occurred to me:

This book would make a terrible gift!

(Unless, of course, it’s literally on a loved-one’s wish list.)

Hazel's next book would make a terrible holiday gift for someone else. But it would make a terrific New Year gift for yourself! Click To Tweet

Why would it make a terrible gift?

The book-in-progress is calledΒ Go With the Flow! The Clutter-Clearing Tool Kit for an Organized LifeΒ (aka The Clutter Flow Chart Workbook). So, buying it for yourself is a terrific idea! But buying it for someone else, unasked, would be like hiring a professional organizer as a surprise because you think they need to get organized, not because they want to. Which is like giving someone a Weight Watchers membership that they didn’t ask for.


(Do I really have to explain further?)

When it’s ready,Β Go With the Flow!Β will be the perfect gift for yourself, if your goal is to declutter in the New Year.

So, who is this next book for, then?

Go With the Flow! (aka the Clutter Flow Chart Workbook) is for:

  • Anyone who wants to get organized β€” DIY, or with help. Decluttering comes first, so you don’t end up organizing and devoting space to things you don’t even need or want anymore.
  • Anyone who is already fairly organized, but maybe hasn’t been maintaining their systems due to lack of time, energy, or both. Do you need to get back on track? Guess what? There’s a chart called “Getting Back on Track”!
  • Anyone, including those with ADHD, who has found that visual aids and worksheets help keep them focused on a task or project.
  • Professional organizers who are already familiar with Clutter Flow Charts and want to see ALL 17 OF THEM! Plus updated articles, worksheets, and instructions.
  • Professional organizers who want some new ideas of how to walk clients through the decluttering process. Chapters can also be used as outlines for presentations (with proper credit given).
  • Professional organizers who specialize in helping chronically disorganized clients. Visual aids stimulate neuroplasticity!
  • Virtual organizers and their clients who aren’t working side-by-side in person. Visual aids remind clients what to do between sessions.
  • All organizing clients. By definition, clients have already asked for help, so it would be not be at all insulting to give them a copy of the book, or to recommend it to them.

What is the new book release date?

I may be easing up a bit, but I’m not slacking off entirely. In fact, my recent blog post β€” Six steps to getting unstuck on a project β€” helped me to get going again after a long period of slacking off. Readers have reported that it helped them get unstuck too. Maybe it will help you as well?

I mentioned to some organizing colleagues that I’d had an epiphany about my book. They all agreed it would be a good January book (better than a holiday gift-giving book), because decluttering and getting organized are such popular New Year’s goals. Julie Bestry β€” she’s the only person thus far to actually read the book, and she likes it! β€” suggested that it would not only be perfect for January, but in light of my epiphany, why not launch my book on Epiphany β€” January 6th? Half the organizers on the call were Jewish and the other half were woefully uneducated about Epiphany so we looked it up:

In some religions, Epiphany marks the end of Christmas; the Twelve Days of Christmas being December 25 – January 5. Time to clear the clutter of the holidays and get in shape for the coming year. (Might as well start with “The Holiday Decor Clutter Flow Chart” as you’re undecorating and putting away.)

January 6th it is!

If my next book is on YOUR wish list, just ask for an Amazon gift card!

Why else is January perfect, according to clever Julie? Because then everyone who receives an Amazon gift card during the holidays can use it to go buy my book on Amazon!

Without the pressure of a misguided, self-imposed deadline, I think I will be able to more fully enjoy some upcoming friend and family visits and occasions.

How will we know for sure when the book is ready?

Don’t miss out! If you’d like to be notified, follow me on social media or subscribe to my newsletter.

And don’t keep me a secret β€” tell your friends!

Meanwhile, what would make a better gift?

Click image to read fabulous reviews and to order your copy!

Click image to read fabulous reviews and to order your copy!

What’s a Photo Without the Story? How to Create Your Family LegacyΒ is still a perfectΒ gift for the photographer, photo organizer, family history keeper, genealogist, legacy planner, declutterer, downsizer, or storyteller in your life.

Hung Jury: The Diary of a Menendez Juror is always appreciated by true crime buffs, Menendez brothers supporters, law students, and teenage girls (don’t ask).



Β Β Β Β Β Β 




What epiphanies have YOU had lately?

What might YOU enjoy more fully this next couple of months if you rearranged your priorities a bit and took it a little easier?

Please share with us in the comments below!

Copyright 2022 by Hazel Thornton, Organized for Life and Beyond
Author of What’s a Photo Without the Story? How to Create Your Family Legacy
PleaseΒ contact me for reprint permission. (Direct links to this page are welcome!)

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  1. Linda Samuels on November 7, 2022 at 1:34 pm

    Hazel- I love the title of your post because it intrigued me right from the start. Your thinking about the best time to launch your new book was fun to read about. So often we set a timing and then realize it’s not quite right. I like how you were able to pivot and rethink a better time to launch. And by doing so, you also take some pressure off for the holidays. You get a bit more fudge time to complete it.

    It sounds like it will be a winner and I wish you ALL the success.

    By the way, at the NERCPO conference this weekend (hosted by the NAPO-CT chapter,) Seana Turner created a visual game, which she does for each conference. This one she called, “Who Is This?” She showed a photo of someone in or related to the organizing and productivity industry and you had to guess who they were. Guess what? You were one of the people she showed…a place of honor as there were only 20 images. Thought you’d get a kick out of that. I’m happy to report, I got that one right. πŸ™‚

    • Hazel Thornton on November 7, 2022 at 5:41 pm

      Thanks, Linda! And I am, indeed, honored to have been included in Seana’s “Who is This?” game! Thanks for letting me know!

  2. Seana Turner on November 7, 2022 at 8:22 pm

    You are the QUEEN of the flow chart, so I know this book will be amazing. I love a good chart.. in fact, I think most things are easier to understand if you can present them in graphic format. πŸ™‚

    Best of luck with the new book. It won’t be long now, and I agree that the timing will be perfect for GO Month.

    And yes, you were one of the superstars in my “Who Is This?” game, and I’m happy to say that MANY people were happy to get “you” right! πŸ™‚

  3. Janet Barclay on November 8, 2022 at 11:44 am

    That is the most clickable blog post title ever! I couldn’t resist seeing what you were going to say.

    I’m more of a detail person than a planner (ISTJ), so when I have a new project or initiative I usually add all the items on the first day I plan to work on it. I check off the completed tasks and move the rest to the following day.

    I recently completed a course which generated a lot of to-do’s, and the coach recommended that I create a 90-day plan. With a timeline in mind, I was able to organize the tasks in an order that makes sense and even assign them to specific weeks so I don’t keep rescheduling them. I’m very excited to see how it goes!

  4. Julie Bestry on November 8, 2022 at 2:33 pm

    I had no idea I was going to make a cameo appearance in your blog, Hazel, but yes, I read your book and it’s already great, just like the first one. (Hey, folks, if you’re reading this and wanting to organize something, while you wait for “Go With the Flow! The Clutter-Clearing Tool Kit for an Organized Life,” go buy a copy of “What’s a Photo Without the Story?”

    Also, Seana’s game sounds cool. I’m not surprised your superstar status got you a position!

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Hazel's Books

Book cover: What's a Photo Without the Story? How to Create Your Family Legacy

What’s a Photo Without the Story? How to Create Your Family Legacy

Cover of "Go With the Flow! (The Clutter Flow Chart Workbook)"

Go With the Flow! (The Clutter Flow Chart Workbook)

Cover of "Hung Jury: The Diary of a Menendez Juror"

Hung Jury: The Diary of a Menendez Juror