A fellow writer and blogger, one I consider a good friend although we haven’t met, has set out to be a more #productivewriter. She refers to her new experimental project “Writing into the Dream – a six-week experiment in becoming a more productive writer”. Click here to read her post.
I am in the middle of my 16-Day Mindful Reset Challenge and although the two challenges are dissimilar I had to think about it. I already am time-deprived, I always tell myself. Having thought about it for a minute (I didn’t say I had to think about it for long, ha-ha!), I decided to go for it.
Theresa’s first strategy is Write Every Day! Does it sound easy? If it does, it is misleading. This is one perfect example of easier said than done. There are so many “reasons” (excuses?) why I don’t write every day.
But, I was intentional! That should make a difference.
I told myself, while on my one-and-a-half-hour-traffic-ridden-drive from work, that I would start writing as soon as I got home. After all, I don’t cook so making dinner isn’t one of those activities that keep me away form writing. I buy food. In the car was supper. I probably cook once a month, if ever. And yes, when I do cook, at least two hours quickly disappear from time available for writing. I also had a good start as I had been listening to Katharine McPhee’s first album, which at some point in my life was all I listened to. That part of my life comes alive when I hear the songs. I thought, a silly smile – no grin – plastered across my face, I can write about him and our short love story (affair?). Listening to the whole album also brings back the memories of my European adventure. I think I’ll write about it tomorrow. I’ll just keep listening to Katharine.
Here’s the reality: I sat in front of my laptop for at least two hours preparing to write. Yes, preparing. This is my Numero Uno Distraction. I was researching. I was on YouTube searching for Katharine’s music. I can’t quite remember the lyrics so I needed to be reminded. I know that most, if not all, of those songs have their own little stories in the big story. But the research was only after I watched a few videos of a dude called Mystic7. He plays Pokemon Go and the videos are Pokemon Go related, mostly, his own game.
This brings me to my No. 2 Distraction: Pokemon Go. I play the game every day! If I wrote as much as I play, I would be a more productive writer. The game takes me out of the house. In the house, I watch videos. I do admin: cleaning up my Pokemon Storage, transferring Pokemon back to the Professor, marking the ones that will evolve and making sure I have at least one left of each. Sometimes, I play my child’s game, Pou. Gaming can keep me away from writing. Sigh!
There are also those rare occasions when my lethargy wins and I Netflix-binge. I don’t even watch stuff I haven’t watched before. I repeat. I watch the same movies I like again and again. Hubby’s Friends doesn’t distract me so much but I can become a couch potato, too. I recently started watching Charmed. Sadly, (or is it fortunately?) I can’t seem to find it anymore. Maybe it’s off Netflix.
Other activities that take time from writing are:
- Going out for supper, mostly to Montecasino, which would have been cooking if I cooked.
- Casino (let’s not say what I do in the casino), although I once finished writing a flash fiction in the casino and I think I got an Honorable Mention for that one (Vengeance). Well, the setting of that story is Witkoppen Road, which leads to Montecasino. Across the Montecasino complex is that bungee jumping / dinner in the sky scaffolding structure. It is a bit worse when we head out east to Emperors Palace as there’s about an hour of drive added to time spent.
- Work after work, because sometimes I have to do work at home.
- Facebook and Instagram, but not so much because I’m hardly there.
- Phonecalls, which has now put a dampen on the flow of my thoughts so I should rather stop here and just take a shower.
- Long showers, although good for my creative juices, can take quite a chunk of time because this 45-minute water activity is followed by getting the body moisturized and dressed. And, when one is “slightly” (yeah, right!) easily distracted, the process can take about an hour. Of course, sometimes, I write in between before the ideas disappear.
If I don’t write even a Tanka tonight before I take my 5-hour sleep, at least I wrote this.