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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi! I don't have any books published yet, but I'm revising a 140k-word redraft that's sprawling all over the place. Because I'm cutting, adding, and changing things, it seems daunting, and I struggle with procrastination. One sneaky way I procrastinate is by lurking on here and other writing blogs like Joe Konrath's, with the excuse that "It's ok, it's writing-related." But then Joe put up a new post that asks "Are You Writing?" http://jakonrath.blogspot.com/2011/07/are-you-writing.html

After I read that entry, I whispered to myself, "you are so busted." It just confirmed what I've already been feeling: I'm blessed to finally have the financial security to work from home (thanks DH!) and I don't want to squander this gift by lurking on the internet. It's not that I don't want to write, but I'm afraid I won't write what the story wants to be, then I wonder..."What is this story anyway? Who are these characters? Where do they really want to go? Where do I want to go? (Answer: To the kitchen to get a snack because I'm scared I won't be good enough to tell a story that was my idea in the first place.)

Next thing I know, an hour's gone by and all I've done is worry about my writing, or read other people's writing, without doing any actual writing of my own.

To turn things around, I want to use this thread as an accountability tool for myself and anyone else who wants to hop on. The basic format will be a short statement of my goal (writing a certain amount of words or for a certain amount of time) then checking in after I've met that goal.

Ok. It's about 11:15 EST and I'm going to revise until 12:30. That means I have to finish that new scene, then move the older scene up later, and figure out how to segue into the scene after that. During that time, I am not allowed to go on the Internet or even do housework or make ice tea (another sneaky procrastination method of mine). Nor am I allowed to revise another, easier part of the novel (I am onto myself with that little trick!).

Here goes. I will now revise until 12:30. My next post will report the results. Please feel free to make a mini-goal for yourself as well.

Edited to add: Oh my gosh, I am now procrastinating by editing this anti-procrastination post! That's it Maryann, scram and do some work.
 

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I admit it, I'm busted too.  I had assorted family in town for almost 3 weeks.  In that time I managed to write one scene.  Now that they've gone, I haven't written anything.  I've had a couple of ideas worm their way into my head, but I haven't done anything with them either.

I've already missed this morning's writing session.  I was up late last night (not writing), and overslept.  I'm going to try and slip some writing in today, if my kids cooperate.  Otherwise I have to wait until after dinner tonight.  Oh.  It's Monday.  Three shows on SciFi that I love watching.  Okay, mini-goal: I will write at least 1k words today.

That should toss me firmly into the next scene, and push me towards the conflict.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
MF Strnad, you are getting back on track and setting an attainable goal, that's good. Remember to check in after your 5k goal.

My progress: I spent more time than I said I would, and yet, I didn't accomplish as much I wanted to. I think the trap I got into was starting out by revising the first half of the new scene. After that I wrote new words (487, I just did a word count).

I think that next time, I would write the new words first then go back and see what I need to revise. But I did write new stuff and stayed off the Internet (except to grab some research), so that's progress. I'm going to eat lunch at my desk and figure out how/if I should move that earlier scene after the new scene.

P.S. You know what...that "grabbing some research" Internet time took longer than it should have and was probably procrastination in disguise. Darn. But at least I am being honest with myself. So what have I learned? Think twice before revising and researching when I know I need to do new writing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
At least you did the writing fast! I never thought of editing in the bath tub. 

After lunch, I moved that earlier section up, which required some new writing and rewriting to make it fit the later time frame. I also cut a scene that was around 750 words. (My draft has too much fat, so cutting is actually an accomplishment for me.)

Tomorrow I will sit down and work for seven hours, with a break for lunch. I want to have everything rearranged and rewritten up until the part when a particular character comes back to town. It pains me how I've squandered my time the past few months. I prayed to have this opportunity for years, and now that I have it, I'm not using it wisely. I do have a manuscript written but it took too long to write and is taking too long to edit, all because of fear. Fear is the root of it. I don't feel scared when I write, only when I think about it. Work is the cure for fear.

Now I'm enforcing a new anti-procrastination strategy: My husband used some parental-control software so that I can't access the Internet (except for Yahoo mail) on the computer I use to write. I feel silly that he has to use parental control software, but I'm the one who asked him to do this. (I'm now on the laptop, but that's not an Internet temptation for me during the day because he takes it to work with him.)

I will report my progress tomorrow evening, after an Internet-free day.
 
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