Saturday, 24 May 2008

Well, this has been one weird-ass week ... A.K.A. Good procrastination can be very good!

This has been a week of weird, and altogether far too much is going on! But all of it good. :)

The additional part time job (factory work. *YAWN* And incidentally not the job I had the good feeling about, which turned out to be yet another wind-up siding on the path of trying to earn a living) started this week - light manual labour for two days, but boy am I knackered. It's good though. Once I'm used to it, it'll give me the chance to switch in to auto-pilot and let my brain soar away in to the land of story. Also a great opportunity for people-watching. Plus, I will now be able to afford to do a few things that I enjoy - - If I can ever find the time!


I've been idly thinking that I may need to move to a cheaper house, but without quite being at the commitment level that involves planning a move. However, on a whim this week I went and saw a place that unexpectedly is just PERFECT. So I put in an offer, without even thinking of the "Oh my goodness I have to pack everything and throw away all the shit I moved house with the last two times before I even consider moving house again" consequences. I didn't think I'd get it, the people who saw it directly before me put in an offer too, so I thought I wouldn't stand a chance in hele, but the agents turned around and said "It's yours!" ... So now I have to sort out all the paperwork and then spend every spare moment throwing out or recycling crap, and packing all my other stuff so I can move house some time in the next two to three weeks.

ARGH! But also, Excellent!

And then last night ... ho-oo boy, last night! ... Last night I came home to a phone message that proves not all procrastination is bad, in fact some can be down right amazingly good!

All that procrastinating I did, editing my Tarot book after that nibble of interest from a publisher, has paid dividends. I sent them a letter detailing my new vision for the book - basically turned the emphasis of the book on its head, the main thread is now (to use screenwriting terminology) B Story, and the secondary thread is now most definitely the A Story ... except we're talking about Tarot so it's not a novel and the word story really doesn't apply. But you get what I mean.

There's a shed load of work to be done yet, and no money at all (virtually), but come next spring I'm gonna be a published author! WAY-HEY! HOORAH! etc, etc. *dancing in celebration*

So procrastination has been my official route to becoming a published author.


You can't see it but I'm doing The Dance Of Joy ... and as I boogie, I notice all the crap around the flat that I should be in the process of packing, or recycling, or throwing out. *sigh*

But, how good is that?!!

This has been one weird-ass week.

"Have you paid your dues, Jack?"
"Yes, Sir. The check is in the mail."

Sunday, 18 May 2008

Solving one form of procrastination

Paul Graham has come up with a way to stop himself from being distracted by the internet when he is supposed to be working. Read about his solution here!

I use a similar method myself.

Now if only I can cut out all the other distractions and learn some self discipline I might actually manage to write something.

Everything you ever wanted to know ... about procrastination (maybe)

DMc has a link to a great set of articles by The Slate on procrastination.

A cunning and viscious spiral trap if ever I fell into one!

Thanks. Denis.

Saturday, 3 May 2008

Creating Character

Holly Lisle has a great article on How To Create Characters. She may be talking about writing for novels, but the same principles apply.

She doesn't think about their physical appearance. Instead she starts out by giving her character a problem, a dramatic need, a compulsion. That's your springboard. An insight into their internal landscape.

Bill Martell writes about 3-D Characters: using contrast to explore character.

There are about a gazillion other articles online about creating character. If you have any you want to recommend, please give details in the comments?

So, how do I do that...?

... I'm talking about Bill's suggestion to use your personal problems to fuel your writing.

Well, you know what, that works great for new projects - where it is possible to do what he suggests and line your story up with your emotions. :) Excellent!

However, not so great for existing ideas with different emotional emphasis. So working on the rewrite? Still not really happening at the moment. Concentration is difficult, and what I am writing on it is frankly crap.

In the few moments I have to myself each day I find I'm either chewing over solutions to the finance issue, distracting myself with other activities, or (Hoorah!) writing an outline for the next story.