Sunday, October 3, 2010

The 'P' Word

Writers overcome many obstacles to follow their career dreams. It’s a tough road where one must battle rejection, loneliness, and frustration. The continuing evolution of technology and the changes it brings to the writing industry offers as many challenges as it does opportunities. Writers are expected to design and maintain websites, blogs and have a presence on other social media. It seems everyday a new tool is invented or updated. Promotion, promotion, promotion. And somewhere in those hours we squeeze out to work on our careers, we try to find time to actually write.

So far I’ve only mentioned the distractions created by the various responsibilities a writer faces beyond working on their current manuscript. The other parts of life intruding on a writer’s work time are worthy of their own blog sometime in the future. But there is one more anchor dragging on an author’s creative ship. It often threatens to sink my own. The p-word. Procrastination.

I’ve used all the things listed earlier in this post to put off getting to work on the current WIP. Sometimes the weather is just too beautiful to miss. Sometimes the minutes I have before the next demand on my time are too few to bother opening the word document. Sometimes I really must read over what I sat at the keyboard. Sometimes I have to warm up my coffee or brew a new pot. Whatever the reason, they’re all just excuses to procrastinate.

Setting goals, having critique partners, deadlines, all these things can help you stay on task. If no one is looking over your shoulder, set targets for accomplishments and make promises to yourself. I used to do that on my blog and intend to start again this Sunday. Each Sunday I’m going to make my week’s goals public on my blog and then report the following week on how I’ve done. Starting today.
1) I'm going to do write no less than 15K on my current WIP.  Grand plan there.
2) I'm going to promote my upcoming booksigning in State College.
3) I'm going to start putting together a blog tour for the release of Beyond the Gate.

es goal setting work for you? Do you make your goals public or keep them private? What is your favorite form of procrastination?

1 comment:

  1. I think what works for me is not so much the goal setting as the writing down of those goals, then writing down each day's goals. And marking them off.