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Monday, 30 April 2012


The act of procrastinating; putting off or delaying or deferring an action to a later time.

Okay, I get that, but can it still be classed as procrastination if you really want to do the task, but you’re just having a hard time getting in to the flow of it?

Every time I complete a project, I take a week or two off. That may seem huge to a lot of writers, but I find that I really need a good gap. Gives me a chance to catch up on everything I may have pushed to the side because I was to focused on zed project. It gives me a chance to catch up on reading. And it gives me a chance to recharge my batteries and let my muse have a break.

After a week is up, I open up my slush pile folder on the computer – or open my writing journals – and I start breezing through notes, and ideas for stories.

I don’t know if that also seems crazy to writers. Usually, when I’m focusing on a project I will get other ideas and characters barging in to my head – as you do – or I will have an interesting dream. Now, I don’t really like juggling, because I find it splits my attention to the point where neither of the projects will get done at all. So, I make lots of notes and put them to one side so I can come back to them when I have finished whatever I’m writing at that time.

Where was I? Oh yes, so I will then flick through notes and such and see what I would like to work on next. And I spend that week planning and getting the world and characters clear in my head. So, there it is, a fortnight off between projects.

Since I have tilted this post "procrastination," you have no doubt figured out what I’m going to say next.

I'm procrastinating.

It’s been a month since my last project. I’m not happy about it but I think a writer should never force themselves to write, because in the long run it will only block them more and get them stressed. But, I don’t like the fact that I haven’t been able to write. I'm not deliberately avoiding writing. I’ve sat down and read over the current WIP and I have even edited and added a good couple of hundred words in, but for some reason I’m finding it hard to progress. 

I love the story. I love the characters and the world. I really do. So, naturally one would have thoughts there wouldn’t be a problem, but somehow I can’t seemed to find that point of deep immersion. And I don't mean in the sense that the story is dull and doesn't interest me, because it really does. I just haven't reached that moment where I crave opening that document up and working on it. Does that make sense?

 I thought maybe I better put the project to one side and turn my attention on to another one, but part of me feels like that’s cheating. In fact, that would be procrastinating, in a sense. 

I know I said that one should never force themselves to write, but sometimes you do need to push yourself. So, I made a deal with myself yesterday. Today is the last day of April. I’m going to make notes and I’m going to listen to the playlist I have for this particular project - which will hopefully get me in the mood. Tomorrow is the first day of May, and I am going to write. I am promising myself that I will have this project finished by May. Wish me luck.

What about you? How do you handle those periods where procrastination just seems to spring on you? What do you think works best if you can’t seem to get your head in the game?

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