Saturday, May 15, 2010

Too Much Time on My Hands

If you are "old" like me, you now have a Styx tune running through your head.


In the meantime, I thought I would check in on my lonely little blog. I haven't received the official paperwork, but it seems as if my time with the 2010 Census has come to a close. So now I'm down to the one job--the one that was to take the place of the various, random, part-time temp jobs I was taking. Now I can be various, random, and part-time-ish in one place.

So, technically, I have OODLES (I'm sure oodles is technical) more time for my writing, right? No more having to sneak the writing in by scribbling into notebooks while eating lunch at the same time, no more trying to blog from my phone, no more 4.5 hours of sleep because a new idea showed up after I worked until 10 at the office (and no more needing to go to the office in the evenings just because Gellert's band is practicing in the living room, they've found a new jam pad)-- Nope, some people are that limited but ME-- now I have great big empty slots of time in which to write.

Hmmm, then why do I have great big empty pages staring back at me?

Well, looking back at the past few months, especially the last few weeks, I think it is safe to say my schedule was jam packed. So, I took some of my own advice, and scheduled in my next full writing day.

Word Count: 0*

I let myself be distracted by so many things. I may have just been plain exhausted. Maybe I just needed a Transition Day.

But I have to be careful. Even if I have scheduled my time myself, I still fall into the Procrastination Trap (I can work on that later, I have plenty of time left today). At least when I was working 60-70 hour weeks (seriously?! was I nuts?!) I KNEW that if anything was going to get done, it had to get done NOW-- in this one hour or this half hour, in the 15 minutes before and 10 after something else, whatever. Now, just like a diet plan I heard of recently that consists of eating only 800 calories a day cannot be sustained (seriously?! Are you nuts?! For most, it is not healthy), the quick sprints of writing started to wear me out. I started losing momentum, looking forward to the time I would have more time to put into it. Well, that time is now, and the "extra" time I have  has made writing RIGHT NOW less crucial.

But, the first step is admitting it. Now I can post this as yet another reminder of excuses I've given myself, so I don't repeat them (much).

*I'm not counting scribbled notes about things I plan to write, or a few phrases that didn't even develop into sentences. They were written down, but until they become somewhat comprehensible, they don't get added to the word count for that day.


Shelley_liz said...

You can climb into my boat and we can paddle (write) together. I fall into that trap more times than I would like to admit. I'm currently making progress, but I dread those weeks when even looking at my computer makes me want to give the dog a bath, or wash the car, or clean out the refrigerator. I think you have to feel it to get through it. Blogging is a start :)

Tina Haapala said...

Thanks, Shelley. I've often said that a messy house means my writing is going very well, but at some point, it becomes more of a distraction and I can't just write through it. But then the wave comes back and I glide on, and I wonder why I ever avoided it. (and my dishes get done, too, lol)

Theresa Milstein said...

I used to have days like that. I'd either write or I wouldn't. Now when I don't sub, I take advantage of it. My perspective has changed the last few months. Unfortunately, I've been subbing A LOT.

Have you been more productive since then?

Tina Haapala said...

Hi Theresa. Yes, somewhat. I've made it through that transition time and have had the change to kind of rework my schedule (and my perception) to make room for writing. I do say I am a recovering procrastinator, so I fall into bad habits now and again, but I am always working things through in my mind, even if I'm not getting them down on paper (in full). It helps to have those notes when I do find time to stay in the chair!