Saturday, February 12, 2011
Top Five Ways I Avoid Writing
Yesterday we had a serious conversation about overcommitment. Today is a humorous little article I came up with a few years ago sharing the top five ways I avoid writing.
Number 5: I revise all my goals for the year. Goals are important to every writer and when I don't feel much like plunking my butt in the chair I can rationalize that revising all my goals for the next 12 months will be helpful to my career. I disregard all my past advice about needing specific goals and breaking them down into monthly or weekly blocks and write down an overwhelming list without focus. At least I've got goals...right?
Number 4: I say yes to helping out at every function at my daughters' schools or our church. Volunteering will show my kids the importance of helping others and make me feel good about myself. I might overcommit myself, but those edits to my WIP can wait.
Number 3: I pick up where I left off on that elaborate cross-stitching project so that I can give it to my sister for Christmas. Sure I've been working on it for the last ten years, but I have to finish it right now because it will save us money during the holidays and my sister will really appreciate all the hard work I put into it.
Number 2: I clean the house. Looking around me I see a thick layer of dust on every wooden surface, so I get out the duster and start sliding it along the entertainment center. Once the dusting is done I have to pull the central vac out to get all that nasty dust off the floor. My allergies will thank me for it. I can't possibly leave the floors unwashed at that point, so I haul the pail and mop out of the closet and start scrubbing. Maybe I'll even have time to clean out the linen closet that I've been meaning to get to for the past six months.
And the Number 1 way I avoid writing is...
Surfing the Internet. What a great tool the Internet is. I can perform all types of research for my novels and articles without leaving my home. But it's also a wonderful way to keep me in touch with friends and family. I wouldn't want to be accused of neglecting them by not checking out various forums several times a day. And I must make sure that I keep a close eye on my email. It would be tragic if I missed that important message from an editor.
See, you really can avoid writing. I do it all the time.
How about you? Do any of these sound familiar? Have you used any of these to avoid writing?