Wednesday, February 26, 2014

What I should be doing



As a writer, there are things that people love to tell us to do. I think this partly stems from one of two ideas: writing is easy, and writers are robots, methodically turning out words in perfect order (ha! I just had to wipe away a tear that made me laugh so hard). I’m only seeing this side of it so much because my family can’t quite pick up on the idea that I finished a novel and it wasn’t published the next day (or week or year), and why do I need to start writing another one. While I do devote many hours to writing, often missing sleep, or skipping tv shows or even time in the hot tub, I am not a machine.

In fact, I’m pretty human with all the silly problems that come with being human. Yes, I’d love to be able to work at a 6K a day pace, or revise faster than I draft, or—for the sweet love of chocolate—give a polish read that is faster than 15 pages a day (I shake my fists at thee, oh great slower of my productivity).

So what I should be doing? I should be writing. It’s what we should all be doing.

What have I been doing? Well, I’ve been writing. I’ve also been obsessively checking twitter and query tracker and watching some of my favorite tv shows (how did I go so long without knowing about Idol!!!!). I’m dancing. I’m practicing dancing. I’m drooling over shoes for dancing. And I’m going to tumblr. Then, after being well marinated in procrastination, I write. Sometimes the writing goes well, sometimes it’s crap. Sometimes I land 6K in a day, and sometimes I’m pleased with six words (okay, reality check: I’m never, EVER, pleased with six words. I find that sort of pace torturously slow, and I have no patience for it. Those writers who do and can? Saints, pure and simple, and I’m not a saint).

What are your thoughts? Do you procrastinate much? Do you obsessively follow something that if you could give it up, you’d suddenly have a bazillion more hours in the day to do everything else (you know, like fold laundry and write books?).

9 comments:

  1. I don't think non-writer people will ever understand how much work it is. And I am totally guilty of procrastination. Then I hate myself for wasting a day!

    PS where did you get a hot tube? ;)

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    1. Curse you typos!!!

      And for the record, I get my hot tubes from my hot TV. Now, if that doesn't brand me old, I don't know what does!

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  2. Oh gosh this was me last Sunday! I had time to write but my mind just didn't want to play and think I managed about 200 words in 3 hours! Pitiful! I think anyone who doesn't write just can't understand the time and effort we put into each and every word.

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  3. No. Unless its my Goodread giveaway standing. I JUST CAN'T HELP IT!

    Truth? I'm kind of a workaholic. My poor family. They rarely see me unless it's for regimented and necessary activities. Like making food. Or throwing a workbook in front of the kids. Or cleaning a toilet. I wish procrastinating was my problem.

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  4. The only way I avoid procrastination is by setting a time - recently, it's been "It's 6:30 already. Get your chocolate and take a shot, IT'S PLOTTING TIME." ^_^ It's worked really well for me, and I think it'll continue to work well once I actually start a damn book.

    But oh man, do I ever hear you about people not understanding the process. I have relatives who ask me every single year why I'm not published, like it's supposed to happen just because I've been working toward it for decades. Yeesh!

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  5. Because of all this expectation, when I finished my first novel I didn't realize how long the process (revisions, beta readers, more revisions, submitting, etc) would take before being published. Two years later, I'm still not published and I still have that process to go through. You better believe I'm drawn in by other things! It takes awhile to get over the cold splash of reality and accept the sometimes glacial pace. The time has taught me a lot, though. I just have to get motivated to work.

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  6. I am in such a funk at the moment, I haven't written anything all month. I've been playing with words, but they aren't making much sense. I obsessively check my email, even when I know I shouldn't be expecting replies yet. One thing I've come to understand is that things always come back together again :-)

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  7. i do procrastinate a lot. It all depends on my feelings at the moment. Like right now i actually have tons of free time. So much that i'm not sure what i should do with it. I mean I SHOULD be writing my new WIP, but i'm just, not. At the moment.
    I am playing a lot of halo 4 though

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  8. I'm always trying to sneak in writing time. Trouble is, just because I sit in front of the computer doesn't mean anything gets done. I have both godd days and bad.

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