Home alone, with so many things to preoccupy me, some days I find it difficult to focus on the task of writing. It starts off something like this: I'll write after.... I take a shower, put my daughter on the bus, throw in some laundry, check my e-mail, have breakfast, load the dishwasher, do my hair and makeup (because what if someone comes to the door?), check in with all my blog buddies (and there are many), pay bills, walk the dog, check the mail (because Harlequin has had my partial for three months and they should be responding soon....shouldn't they?), read and sort the mail so it doesn't pile up on the kitchen table (somehow it does anyway), change the laundry, put in another load, make lunch, eat lunch......and before I know it it's 1:00 p.m. And oh crap, my son's going to be home in an hour. What can I get done in one lousy hour? It's better not to get started than to get interrupted.....although in my son's defense, it's usually me following him around the house in need of human contact. He's content to plug into his X-box and forget I'm alive! But knowing he's home and may need me at any moment, (he's 16 tomorrow by the way, and really only needs me to drive him around!) I put off writing until later. I change and fold the laundry, check my e-mail, start to think about something for dinner, and then my youngest daughter gets home (and she loves attention, any kind), and I think: I'll write after..... I talk to my daughter(s) about their day, nag my kids to turn off the TV, do their homework, stop fighting, set the table, walk the dog, come for dinner (because somewhere in all of this I've thrown some type of food products together and called it a meal), take a shower, practice your flute, study your chemistry, turn off the TV (again), go to bed...go to bed now....go to bed now and I mean it. By then it's 10:45 p.m., and I'm tired (since I was up at 6:45). So I wind down with a little Food Network, check my e-mails followed by a little late night blogging, and go to bed thinking: I'll write after......a good night's sleep.
Luckily all my days are not like this. And to limit the ones that are, I've joined WritingGIAM (Writing Goals in a Month), where writers and authors (prepublished/published) share weekly goals and accomplishments that are posted for all members to see. And I Do NOT want to have to post "This week Wendy Marcus has not written one blessed word, entered one contest, or done one thing to further her "career" as a writer."
When the words don't come easy, I get a rejection, or don't place in a contest, and I need something to motivate me to get to work, I visit http://www.writeattitude.net/. If you've never been there, it's a wonderful site with inspirational quotes and stories of published authors' roads to publication. While there I picked up this quote that I repeat over and over whenever I'm thinking of doing something else when I should be writing: "You don't find time to write. You make time. It's my job." - Nora Roberts
So what types of things keep you from writing, and how do you regain your focus? And if you're not a writer, what's your favorite procrastination activity?
- It is said that good things come to those who wait. I believe that good things come to those who work. - Wilt Chamberlain
- A professional writer is an amateur who didn't quit. - Richard Bach
- You don't find time to write. You make time. It's my job. - Nora Roberts
- Each morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters most. - Buddha
- Luck is when an opportunity comes along and you're prepared for it. - Denzel Washington
- I can accept failure, but I can't accept not trying. - Michael Jordan