Procrastination Part 3 – Good dog.

demon - dogPROCRASTINATION lives I tell you! Lives!

You are here because the Vanquishing Adventure is incomplete, or didn’t work, or work felt too hard, or <gasp> PROCRASTINATION was just too darn good to put down. Better than booze, chocolate and sex all rolled into one.

Like booze, chocolate and sex you still have a choice: What type of booze? What type of chocolate? What type of sex? Again, it’s up to you. Keep writing but use the distraction to your advantage. Manipulate it, train it. Demons have a work ethic too, just figure out what your particular demon responds to – and make it work for you (Get down, Shep!)

In the final part of our unique Twelve  Step programme, once again in no particular order, we have (drum roll please)

7. Blogging
Create a blog. But first, research is required. Get reading other peoples’ blogs. Invest time deciding what you’re going to blog about, how to make your blog look good and read good (some choice grammar there). Write a list of topics, one per draft post, and get the gist of the idea down, complete the one that sticks, that interests you most. Set diary reminders of when a blog post is required (regularity is the key as any fule knows) and start publishing.

8. Learning the Craft
This is actually important for all writers, whether they’re fiddling with a PROCRASTINATION demon or not. Even ‘real’ authors (y’know, them that wot get paid to write) focus on the craft of writing. And if you’re going to develop your skills while trying to avoid writing, this is a good way to go. Research ‘How to’ writing books and buy some. Follow some writing blogs ( there are some great ones out there, no I’m not going to tell you where, go and look, expand your own horizons).

9. Read
Read books in genres you’ve not tried before, just make sure they are well written, none of this ’50 Shades of Shit’ nonsense. It doesn’t have to be the classics (I hate Dickens – there, I said it) there are plenty of modern authors whose writing is well worth the adventure.

10. Get Out More
Join a writing course, that way you can immerse yourself in the craft, other people’s opinions and expose yourself to new creative experiences. You do have to contribute, though. Some courses, I hear tell, while finding your company charming, may deselect you if you contribute no writing.

11. Play
Play with writing exercises. They’re short attention span pieces that get the juices flowing and can take you down any route you feel like at the time. There are few rules. Who says metaphors have to be believable? Treading into a fallen cloud of snow does squeak like the texture of  raw aubergine. Well it does to me, anyway.

12. Do not Engage Brain.
Stick the tv on, get a pen and paper – or laptop – watch some old rubbish and don’t think about the words you’re putting on paper. Let them flow. Don’t peek and absolutely do no start to edit. The point is to let the words out without your brain getting in the way. You’d be amazed at what comes out. This is how Metallica turned my innocent story about a wartime, child refugee into a child’s eye view of fear in a wobbly, child-eating cottage.

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