Monday, October 13, 2008

Time Leeches--addendum

Sometimes my head gets so far ahead of my fingers, I actually get lost in my own thought process. Annoying, but true. That's what happened with the Time Leeches post--so much stuff wanting out that the original reason for the post got lost in the shuffle. What was that reason? BLOGS. Lots of them.

Blogs are--as much as it pains me to say it--mega-time leeches. As you hopscotch from one interesting piece to another, the day slips away. The "call" stories, the advice, the bios on other writers you know only online, the tips on perservering, the little known fact or amazing tidbit all conspire to keep you glued to your computer, but you aren't writing.

My solution is a once a week approach. If a chapter mate or writing friend is blogging somewhere, I will pop in to support them (goes back to that being a friend ideal), but then it's back to work (and here we have a wee bit of self-discipline. Whodda thunk?) Posts are also a once a week chore--so far--and provide an outlet for the myriad random thoughts playing Ricochet Rabbit among the characters and story ideas that people my cerebral landscape.

I also realized, in the course of my earlier Time Leeches blog, while illustrating the "mother" part of the family time leeches, I presented no solution specific to that particular problem. Some of us live some distance from our families. That makes avoiding these leeches easier thanks to Caller ID. That's it. I see that area code, and nobody's home.

For those of you with a drop-ins problem, the solution is more difficult. First, if you tend to just "drop-in" yourself, stop. Call first. "Are you busy? Do you have time to (fill in the blank)?" Bioligic reproduction tells us that like begets like, you reap what you sow, etc. These are basic truths. The same holds true in most relationships.

Changing gears with friends or family may take some perserverance--which, as writers, we either have or must cultivate--but after the first couple of times someone asks, "Why are you calling? Just come over." And you reply, "Well, I know how valuable my writing time is, and how distressing it is to have that interrupted. If you are doing something important to you, I didn't want to be inconsiderate," they'll catch on. Well, maybe not the Guilt Master, but even she will back off after a while. Not gracefully, mind you, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

Okay, bases covered--I think. If I'm wrong, feel free to fill in the blanks.

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