The Fears That Bind Us (aka You’re Gonna Die)

A wise friend of mine once observed: Every action we take or don’t take is driven by one of two things: Fear or Love. I’ve been sifting through this idea for a few years now, wondering if this were actually true (being the “inward bound” workshop/personal development/human potential geek-junkie that I am – and yes, I am the kind of person satirized on shows like Portlandia). But I’ve discovered that whenever I break my actions or inactions down to the basic essence, my wise friend is right. I just have to be brave enough to tell the truth about it once in a while, especially when it comes to the fear end of things. I’m quite good at justifying my fears. I also think that there are levels of fear, and I can always tell when I get to the fear behind the...

Writing Life: The Secret Project

Last week I wrote about going through SPLAT, but before I could face my own personal splat, I had a few questions for it. Like why were my procrastination and resistance so hard core around the rewriting of Book Three? The answer came to me Sunday morning. Expectations. My own high expectations and the expectations of my publisher, my friends, my family, and my fans. Writing the next book in a series isn’t easier, at least not to me, and for some reason I thought it would be. It’s much harder. There’s an absence of freedom around it due not only to all the expectations, but also the pressure deadlines. I compared my lack of enthusiasm while writing Book Three to the complete joy I experienced working on my new book Intergalactic. No one, not even myself, had any...

Practical Procrastination Techniques #3 – Research Random Things on the Internet

Because, hey, you never know when a clever turn of phrase, an insignificant fact, or a fleeting moment of genius could help you out of a tight situation. Like an awkward silence at an industry networking party, for instance! As poet Bernadette Mayer says, if it’s not writing, it’s research. ~  ~  ~ A friend of mine’s facebook status stated that she might be Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobic. Since I absolutely have to know what every word I run across means, I dutifully looked it up (see Practical Procrastination Techniques #2). It means fear of the number 666 (fear that it is related to satan and the anti-christ). Well, me being the cheeky monkey that I am (and not even stopping to consider that this may be a serious phobia of hers), I attempted to...

Getting There – Procrastinationville

My evil genius procrastination has whispered me to tarry ’til a more convenient season. ~Mary Todd Lincoln So does Carolyn See really write 1,000 words a day, five days a week? Or does Stephen King really write 10 pages every single day? I’m not sure. I know they are prolific writers, but I tend to believe that there are breaks. What I call “transitions” and what poet Bernadette Mayer calls “research.” (once when we were taking a tour of a brewery in Plzen, she told me that anything that is not writing is research) Perhaps while in the middle of a story, an edit, a brainstorm, a treatment they are going full speed. But I bet they probably have those challenging times when getting there is as difficult as it is for the rest of...