Tag Archives: Procrastination

Oooh look something shiny

Just stop it – focus for crying out loud! I know I hate to plan, everyone knows it. But it’s November on Sunday, today is Wednesday, this story wont get written unless there’s some sort of plan.

I am brilliant at procrastination, how good is Adele’s new song? listening to it now, awesome. See what I did there? That was actually what was happening in my brain as I typed – I am far too easily distracted when faced with a task I don’t really want to do. Last night I spent far too long looking up name generators…

But I do want to write the story, I really do. And I know deep down if I do this planning before I write it the process will be easier. I know I can ignore some of the details of the plan, I won’t feel bound by the outline. But what I will have already embedded in the draft will be a kind of three act structure, characters with internal and external conflict, character development arcs, basically all the stuff I am trying to include in my rewrites of other manuscripts.

So quit it Bel, quit procrastinating. No this post does NOT need a picture, you don’t need to spend 20 minutes searching for creative commons pics. Spend 20 mins on the Snowflake method and get that plan going – you don’t have many days left! Okay, finding and getting the widget working only took 6 minutes – I’m going now, really I am….


Ahh, routine, welcome back!

School returned late last week after the long Christmas break and Little Man was squeezed into last year’s uniform some lunchbox fodder hastily arranged and off he went, happy as a clam.

And that means my work hours return to a more stable pattern and my free time for writing returns – huzzah!

draft 2With only a few weeks until my Writers Victoria course Refine Your Novel starts I need to do some serious work on my first draft. It has some pretty big issues that I know about, some flat secondary characters, a sister that disappears for half the novel, some additional tension that needs a ramp up, a backstory that kind of exists but needs more integrating.

So last night I popped online and uploaded my nanowrimo draft to Officeworks. Their little worker bees toiled away and this morning I went into the store and collected a printed out copy of my draft – it’s a hefty tome and soon to be covered in scribble marks methinks! Yes, these draftpics are of the actual manuscript – felt a bit guilty printing single sided, but those blank pages will get messy.

Thanks sabrakay for the kick in the pants that was your WIP Progress post, it may have seemed simple to you, but motivated me! .

Wired for sound

cute-monster-character_62-698So I’m late to the party but I have only recently discovered podcasts. I know, but hey, I made it eventually.

As with the rest of the world, I’m transfixed by Serial, the episodic reportage of a 1999 murder case, I’m about half way through.

But there are also a heap of resources out there, blogs on every conceivable subject. I’ve found a couple of writing blogs, it’s hard to sift through the info on the interwebs to find something good.

So I’m open to suggestions – have you found a blog you love, something that is really helpful, inspirational?

Maybe there’s something to this

night circusI have spent a little time floating around writer’s twitter and blog pages today, yes you could call it procrastination. And I stumbled across Erin Morgenstern’s blog page – she wrote the fantastic The Night Circus and what did I discover – she did nanowrimo!

It amazed me to see that someone of that level of literary fame (she was one of 4 speakers at Margaret Atwood’s 75th birthday for crying out loud) does nano. What’s even better. Her novel, that wonderful, best selling novel, started out as a nano novel! Wow! Mind. Blown.

Must like bats – flash fiction

What does Batman do when Alfred gets a better offer and hands in his notice? He places a help wanted ad.

bat signalPosition Vacant – Personal assistant

A rare position has become available as a personal assistant to one of Gotham City’s elite. The role is dynamic and challenging, almost two roles in one. By day duties are consistent with a personal butler, maintaining a lively social calendar, discreetly managing a variety of acquaintances and intimates, hands on assistance in corporate and philanthropic work.

It is by night that this role really comes into its own. Evening duties will be allocated on an ad hoc basis and the applicant will need to be reactive and fast thinking in a wide range of situations.

A strong background in surveillance and developing technologies is a must, proficiency in the use of firearms and experimental weaponry would be an advantage.

The role may involve travel and definitely requires creative problem solving abilities. Applicants should not be prone to claustrophobia.

A broad mind is required as the personal assistant is likely to meet an eclectic assortment of associates from the fringes of society.

The successful applicant can expect board and lodging in a stately manor and above minimum wage. Must be endlessly flexible and discreet.

Please submit your application in a coded message, carefully hidden in plain sight. The client will respond if you are successful.

Must like bats.

Does time evaporate?

Illness side tracked me for a week or so, you’ll never know due to the magic of pre-saved and post-posted blogs. But it did stall me from writing for the duration. Not thinking, or planning, but words on screen = 0.

Back into it today (truly the first day I have felt well, pleased it coincided with a day I had free) and I am becoming aware I am not quite back into the routine of writing. I like what I am writing it’s just that I manage to fill a good few hours before hand with distraction, procrastination, junk.

I don’t know why, it’s pure self sabotage. I arrive at the library, excited, keen to get started, feeling lucky that I have the hours before me and then I Facebook, read the news online, I don’t even know what else, but bam, time is used up.

Finally I get into it, get into the flow and mindset but I only have 2 hours left! Arrrrgggg! Why do I do it?

I need to retrain myself. Perhaps a quick burst of unrelated writing within a half hour of sitting down might work. Warm up the writing muscles.

Maybe a timer of some sorts – there used to be something called Write or Die, a timer based web tool that you could set to a word count and time limit. If you missed your goal a hideous noise would result. Seems this is now a paid option, much improved with rewards as well as sticks. In looking (yes procrastinating) I have found an alternative called Scrawl

Credit - image for the online product Scrawl: http://www.finaldeadline.co.uk/scrawl.html

Credit – image for the online product Scrawl (link in the post)

which looks like a nice option – I’ll give it a try.

Any other advice besides suck it up princess and just type you woos?

Not this time around (yet) but the website Morph Thing is a fantastic procrastination time waster – you can choose pics of celebs (or upload your own) and morph them together into, usually, gorgeous results. I’ve attempted to make character sketches this way but they tend to come out too incredibly pretty to be real life people. But hey, it’s fun and uses up an inordinate amount of time – have a try!! Hayden-Panettiere-and-Hillary-DuffHere’s Hayden Panetierre and Hillary Duff (I don’t know, they are just two in the H category) – no one in the real world could look like this!


Current Nano side note for you – word count is not on target but solid, the nano story I’m writing is actually the ‘warm up’ piece I mentioned above.

Would I lie to you?

Under the cover of darkness I have crept back, through hardships unknown I have fought my way back.

KeepCalmStudio.com-[Crown-Upside-Down]-Keep-Calm-It-s-True-This-Blog-s-Back-againOk so that’s possibly a tad over dramatic. I have returned, I have no decent excuse for such a protracted absence – life interfered, pesky imp that it is.

But with renewed vigour I am back writing again, and I’ve done a sneaky little thing. I wrote this post <<insert time frame>> ago (you know I’m leaving that in as typed, cos that’s how I roll, deliberate typos so that you then assume the others are deliberate and ironic, yeah that’ll work). Seriously though, this post was written in late August.

Why the posting delay you ask? I’ve restarted this blog in the past and fallen off the wagon, I didn’t want this to be a repeat of past performance. So today I started writing again, outlining, but the juices are flowing. I’m chronicling the restart and also plan to restart the blog. But I want a volume of work again, I want a habit re-established and sustained, I want to be able to make sure it sticks.

So I’m writing, and I’m blogging as I go, it will just be a little while till I post. But rest assured, if you’re reading this post, there are many to follow, I have a back log, well I will have, I don’t yet today while I’m typing, but I do today as you’re reading. Get it? Phew, I’m glad someone does.

Talk to you again, well tomorrow maybe? Let me know.

It feels great to be back – Bel.

Really well disguised procrastination

aka Procrastination with Purpose

So I’ve been having a grand ol’ time working on my manuscript but haven’t written a single new or additional word.

However I feel like I’m still moving forward and keep wanting to get back to it each night. So what the heck have I actually been doing?

I’ve downloaded a trial version of the writing program Scrivener. I’ve heard about this program off and on for the past three years or so – all good things. It’s supposed to be the beez kneez in manuscript and stage

image from freepik.com

image from freepik.com

writing. One teeny, and not actually significant, detail that I really like is that the trial period is 30  days of actual use, if you take three weeks off it doesn’t eat into your trial period – nice!

I’ve spent the last little while putting my existing manuscript into the program, it’s kinda complicated but well worth it.

The program creates index cards for you, allows you to drag the scenes around, group stuff, it’s very dynamic.

It’s taking me a little while to sort it out how it all works, and to complicate matters I also signed up to dropbox to start saving stuff to the nebulous internet cloud, but as my story involves two alternating viewpoints, I think this is going to be really helpful.

In 28 days (of use) I’ll be purchasing a license I think, my budget queen is a blog reader, prepare to enter a new expenditure! However it’s only $US45! If I’d bought it before our $Aus crashed it would have been an even bigger bargain, c’est la vie 🙂

So perhaps it is procrastination, but it’s procrastination with purpose!

Ready, Set….Write

Procrastination activity #1:


from freepik.com

Update blog – Check

This is the first opportunity I’ve had to tackle my manuscript rewrite. I have a few clear hours all to myself, Little Man is at family day care, I have the afternoon off work, I’ve decamped to the Library to avoid the mountain of laundry, the overdue vacuuming. So I’d best get to it!

I don’t know how many words I’ll actually get written. It may just be an exercise in deciding what can stay, what’s salvageable, what’s got to go and where there are gaps.

Wish me luck!