Friday, 23 July 2010

Procrastination - The Root of a Writer's Evil

Why is it, when we say that we love writing, sometimes we would rather do anything other than actually get our bum on the seat, fingers on the keyboard and brain in gear?

Is it that we love the idea of writing more than writing itself? Is it that we love the finished product and the thought of, “I did that” but don’t always want to be bothered to actually put the hard graft in first?

Perhaps it’s a combination of the two, but for me there’s something else too and its called fear. Fear that the idea which sounds brilliant in my head isn’t going to come up to scratch when I put it down on paper. Fear that when it comes down it to I can’t actually get the right combination of words to make my story flow.

And so I procrastinate. I check my emails, I read blogs, I read writing magazines, I read other authors and I make lists. But I don’t actually write.

But not this week. This week I have written. And this week I have almost completed an assignment for a distance learning course am I doing (more about that next time) which has been getting the better of me for a while now. Next week, with a little more editing I will be able to send it off and that will feel like an achievement.

So why has this week been more productive than others? Have I had more time? Nope. I’ve had a million and one things to do this week and horror of horrors the kids have broken up from school and I’m having to sort out child care alongside work and home etc, etc.

No, the reason I’ve got my act together this week is down to three fellow bloggers who I want to publically thank here.

And the winners are:

Jayne over at Novice Novelist. I’ve been following Jayne for a long time now and I was delighted to hear that she has finished her novel and is sending off into the big wide world. Well done Jayne. It’s thanks to hard work, determination and a refusal to listen to the inner Doubting Thomas that Jayne has got this far. And so I’m inspired. Yes, I need to get back to that novel, keep putting the words down and then, spend however long it takes to edit it. It won’t be easy and I know I might fall by the wayside from time to time, but because Jayne has done it, I’m determined that I will get there too. So a big thanks to you.

Inspiring blogger number 2 is India Grey who blogged a huge dollop of inspiration to me this week. Sometimes the thought of actually sitting down and starting work is too immense, hence the procrastination. India suggested in this blog to tackle the work 250 words at a time – and do you know it does work. Because 250 words is quick and achievable and most of all is not scary. So I’ve been sitting down to dash of my 250 words and before I know it they have become, 500 then a thousand and then I have finished the piece I have been putting off for so long. So thank you too India.

And finally, cue drum roll, the third inspirational blogger is Stewart Ferris. This is a blog I read about in a writing magazine. Stewart has blogged about his editing process and although I have read this after the event, I feel I’ve really learnt something. But what has really inspired me this week is this post in which Stewart says that he likes to achieve something towards his future every day, be that his writing, doing up this house, or learning something new. And so I have been following Stewart’s example and making sure that every day I’m investing in my writing future. And do you know what – it makes me feel good that every day I have achieved something. So thank you Stewart – along with the others, you’ve made my week.

And on this inspirational note – tell me – what inspires you

And by the way, this is the first time I've ever done links so if they work,it will be a miracle.

1 comment:

  1. Oh Linda, how lovely! It is great that you got some writing done – I hope this week you have managed to edit and send it off so you can bask in that achievement, it really is a little warm inner glow of happiness, isn’t it? And aw... thank you so much. I am ever so pleased that I help to inspire you, what a lovely thing. You will get there with your novel, I just know it. However long it takes, just keep going, keep believing and enjoying your story. Writing 250 words each day sounds like a fab way forward – yes, most importantly it isn’t scary! And investing in your writing future – I am a big fan of this.

    What inspires me? Hm... the song ‘Paperback Writer’. A new pen to mark a new notebook. Chocolate. The smell of a new book. Other people (like you!) – how creative they are, their thoughts on their own writing journey, their lifestyles. Music. Books in general. Paintings (like our shared picture of Miranda!). Where I’d like to be in a few years time. Beautiful scenery. Friends and family. Magnificent buildings. The rain. Autumn colours. A combination of all these things!