1. wordweaver
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    wordweaver Member

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    Procrastination and how to avoid it.

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by wordweaver, Oct 20, 2007.

    Can anyone help me?! I've been working on writing a nip for quite awhile now, the ideas are mostly there, but I just don't seem to have the disipline to continue it! It's not the story itself, it would be any story I was working on, but I keep making excuses for why I am not actually writing. :(

    "My new job."
    "The kids."
    "Housework."
    "Craft shows."
    "I'm tired..." ;)

    The list goes on, and I'm tired of it! I should tell you, it's impossible to write around the kids, and I can't write in a messy house, but do you have any other suggestions for how I can get out of this slump?

    I have that naggling feeling, you know the one where you just feel the story needing to burst out!

    So what routine does everyone have that actually helps them make progress?

    Any help or suggestions at this point would be greatly appreciated!

    Wordweaver
     
  2. ScaryPen
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    ScaryPen Active Member

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    I have the same problem! It's always to noisy in the day to work and If my work space is messy I can't work. So I clean and organize my workspace, declare it a forbidden area to everyone in the house, take naps in the afternoon and stay up late. I find it easier to concentrate when the rest of the world is sleeping.

    I also downloaded a white noise software that blocks out all other noise when I'm working and my comp is in the corner of the room facing nothing but the wall with my back on the rest of the room. That way there are no distractions. But the white noise thing may not be for everyone... can give some an awful headache.

    The best solution seems to be psyching myself to get it done. Once I'm super excited, it won't matter if an elephant is standing next to me doing headstands to jungle drum beats :)
     
  3. Skipdonahue
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    Skipdonahue Member

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    It's tough at the beginning. You HAVE to force yourself to sit down and write for an hour or two everyday, no matter how much you actually get done. Eventually, it gets easier and easier, trust me. The only way to write a story is with butt in the chair.

    SKip
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    If you feel an overwhelming urge to procrastinate, it's okay to indulge it, but indulge it later when you have the time.
     
  5. Funny Bunny
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    Funny Bunny Contributing Member

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    I dont feel a person even really has a clear idea until they are at the 100 page mark or so. You got to keep going forward. My non-procrastination ploy is: 1) find an area you mean to write. 2) write 10-20 steps in the sequence of action whatever it may be. When the "big area" is fractured into smaller areas, it is easier to write.

    Never write in the main body of the text. Always have a separate "blank" WP program page called "working" have a few "working-on-this" Always write in those and then cut and paste into the main body. You can work on several "areas" at a time. Inch forward, one paragraph at a time if you must.

    If you have given yourself an ultimatum to write 1000 words per day, then drop down to 500 words per day. 500 WPD for 365 days is 182500 words (a fairly respectable novel size.) It may take you a while to write a big book, but 2 years work is better than nothing. You will get faster as you learn.

    "Scrap-book"-- take a little vacation and make a collage from magazines or even draw scenes from the book trapped in your mind. Seeing these can help.
    Do research associated with your project.

    Use a pen and paper to pre-write. Possibly do writing exercises to get your ideas straight.

    Realize that there will be "thinking" periods to writing. Are you procrastinating? Or thinking?

    I just went through an area of "procrastinating," and at the end edited out several scenes that weren't working out. Now I am on a roll again.

    One thing I do is "recite" my stories out loud. I get ideas and find where things are not working.

    Force yourself to write. Writer's write.

    My ultimate "mantra" is that a writer is the first Fan of his or her own work. If you are not excited about what you are doing, I would question your motives (if I were you). To find what you naturally write is generally a long, slow journey. Most beginning writers conform to any recent fad in writing. I tend to think that a beginner will not do well until he or she finds h/er writing "home."
     
  6. wordweaver
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    wordweaver Member

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    Thanks guys, I'll try all of your suggestions. :)

    Funny Bunny, I know what you mean about "fad" writing. I did that at the start, and it took me writing short stories to finally find my niche. Every story became darker, and darker, and hence my love of writing dark fantasy. ;)
     
  7. Kit
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    Kit Contributing Member Contributor

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    Wow there's some useful advice in here that I hope will be able to help my procrastination... any one got any ideas on beating non-writing related procrastination?? lol.
     
  8. Endeavour
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    Endeavour Senior Member

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    Yeah, I agree. One really has to get into the habit of writing for at least an hour a day. Tough at times but beneficial on the long term.
     
  9. Writemor
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    Writemor New Member

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    One foot at a time

    I bought a place that had been bulldozed off leaving about an acre of piles of logs and stumps and was overgrown with new sprouts. I only had a small chainsaw, an axe, and pruning shears. It looked like an impossible task but I told myself that I could do at least one square foot of it very easily and if I could do one foot then I could do another just as easily.

    I cleaned up the entire area one square foot at a time and made it look like a park. That thought process has served me well in many endeavors since then.

    The same idea can be applied to any task including writing. You know that you can write one sentence. None of us can write more than one sentence at a time. If you can write one sentence then you can write another.

    Write if it is only one sentence.
     
  10. crs
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    crs Member

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    Hemingway would always take a break from his writing when he was at a part he thought was particularly strong. He would do this so he would always be excited about returning to his writing. Works for me.
     
  11. wordwizard
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    wordwizard Contributing Member

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    I like that tip crs, I think I will try that one.
     
  12. crs
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    crs Member

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    Pleasure to be of service.
     

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