Procrastination and I are old friends. The other day, for example, I was contemplating pushing aside the novel I was working on editing to go bake chocolate chip cookies. I even went so far as to mention it on Facebook.
I did set aside the edits, but only to work on getting “Rise of Kencha” put together and uploaded for sale.
That is my secret to dealing with procrastination, a trick I learned when I was writing a round-up article for Vision on productivity: procrastinate by doing other tasks that need to be done. Another instance from last week: the day after finishing up a proofreading job, I didn’t want to write, so I spent the day working on covers for books and stories.
This tactic works well for people like me, who always have a number of things underway. Trouble concentrating on a book? Try research, a different book, writing a flash, drafting a blog post, reading up on the industry . . . And this is why I set the goals I did this year: not specific things or specific times, just do something.
Of course, it doesn’t work perfectly. There are dozens of Webcomics I read every day (some actual Webcomics, some print comics that just happen to be available on-line as well), blogs I read, Facebook, Twitter, Fitz (a rather addictive Match-3 game), Bejeweled Blitz (ditto), Google +, Wikipedia . . .
And then there are the many non-writing things I procrastinate: housework, taxes, bills, even replacing holey jeans. It’s just so much bother, and there’s always something else I can do instead. Hmm . . . see what link salad Jay Lake put up today, or scrub the bathroom? Check on the latest themed anthologies and their deadlines, or read the latest IRS news for small businesses? No contest.
I do eventually get everything done, or at least the important stuff. And I’ve decided that’s good enough. I’m meeting goals, meeting deadlines, making progress. I’m trying to get “should” out of my vocabulary (as in, “I should do this”), but as long as it’s there, procrastination will be part of my life. I’ll just try to be productive while I do it.
Today’s post was inspired by the topic “Conquering procrastination”– February’s topic in the Merry-Go-Round Blog Tour — an ongoing tour where you, the reader, travel around the world from author’s blog to author’s blog. We have all sorts of writers at all stages in their writing career, so there’s something for everyone to enjoy. The next post in the tour will be on the 4th, by D. M. Bonanno. Be sure to check it out.
If you want to get to know nearly twenty other writers and find out their thoughts on crossing genre lines, check out the Merry-Go-Round Blog Tour. You can find links to all of the posts on the tour by checking out the group site. Read and enjoy!