This is what I hope to look like, any given day. I want to be able to type my fingers to the bone, and check a gargantuan word count off my list. (Then I want to brag about it on every social media account I possess.) It’s not the toughest job out there. Heck! As writers, we don’t even have to get dressed in the morning if we don’t feel like it.
What I’ve come to realize is that I’m not working that hard at what I do… On a daily basis. Yes, I do work hard at random times when I’m inspired, or trying to meet a personal deadline. Even then, I find myself letting the world around me dictate what I should be doing. Some days laundry is a MUST DO, and other days meeting with a friend for coffee is a TREAT. But, I’ve got to learn the difference, in addition to the word ‘NO’, if I plan to get this book (or any others) written.
Recently, I started a social media sabbatical and it’s going pretty well. (At least it did the first week.) Now, I’ve just filled that time with other menial tasks that could be done later, or not at all. We can all work hard. I can work really diligently at keeping up with every ‘friend’ on Facebook, or retweeting every cool author I wish would follow me someday, but that isn’t getting me closer to my ultimate goal.
Do you remember when writing was all about jotting down what happened in your diary, or scribbling your ideas into a spiral notebook? Oh, to be that young and dramatic again! Wait, no. Please, no! No drama for this mama, I’d rather lend it all to my characters. There are going to be times that my hard work will include making the hard decision to turn off everything and step away from life to work hard. Whether you type until you bruise your fingertips, or write until your pencil is impossible to grasp, getting out of the norm and into a groove is going to feel like work. (It should, if you want it to be your job.)
There are days that you’ll stare at your computer screen, or browse through blogs and you’ll call it work. I do. It’s all an excuse, but for what? You’ve got to figure out if you’re avoiding the work, or the story, and why? Evaluate the cause, so the effect isn’t the same everyday. My issues aren’t going to be the same as yours. We all deal with fear, writer’s block, self-esteem, time management, comparing, confidence, etc. You have to stare the cause of your procrastination in the face, and work through it. Work hard.
It’s going to be hard work, but I know you can do it! I can too.