As we all know, I’m a very lazy writer. VERY. LAZY. I also have adult ADD (self-diagnosed) because I find it difficult to keep focused on one thing at a time. A dozen balls, I can juggle, one? meh… not so much. (Or I could blame the chaos on my incredibly crazy Real Life – and I do – that keeps interfering with my best intentions.)
Take the current WIP. I started writing it in 2008, as an homage to my daughter. It is now 2012, and I’m still approximately five chapters from those magic words “The End.” I’m currently writing the chapter where Amberly will escape from her not so brilliant kidnapper. It should be an easy write. Amberly is resourceful, smart, and she’s already softened the heart of her captor by baking her signature family recipe cupcakes. However, getting my butt into a chair and turning on my laptop (this one time excluded) seems to be an insurmountable task.
I will therefore list some really bad excuses I will use for why not to write, in an attempt to shame myself into completing this book:
1. It’s really nice outside. This is a really bad excuse, because this winter has been mild, spring sprang early, and it’s been nice outside for months. I am so bad…
2. I have to do payroll. This is a good excuse only once every two weeks, when I do the BIG payroll. The alternate week payroll takes me five minutes to do. This is the alternate week. Bad writer, bad…
3. The state auditor came by. Okay, she came by yesterday, and we passed with flying colors. Still, an audit is very nerve wracking and it does take time. On the plus-writer side, I used the opportunity to take a leisurely drive through Detroit, the starting location of Finding Cadence, and took pictures in a cemetery that figures into the storyline. So in that case, I was only half bad.
4. Gardening. This is an excuse that keeps on giving. I suppose I don’t have to garden, but I happen to have an unhealthy love affair with my own homegrown vine ripened tomatoes. I know, I know…there are farmers markets. But shopping farmers markets is not without peril. Our local one has an unorganized union. They have decided to band together and sell all of their produce for the same amount. So one guy’s $5 pint of blueberries is the same as the other guy’s, which makes no sense since I can buy blueberries for $3 a pint at the store, or eat from my own yard.
Today I gardened for five hours in the hot, lovely sun. I’m flogging myself. I could have finished my WIP in five hours, or at least have taken out a huge chunk of the To-Do writing. Instead, my urban guerilla garden is (nearly) finished for the year. (Honey, it’s never finished. Gardening is war. Weeds are the enemy.)
5. I need to make dinner. Puh-leeze. Have you seen me lately? I could go without food for a week and still have a spare tire to unload. Besides, most artists are starving, not food snobs with a wine closet. That’s why they’re nice and skinny and can wear pencil legged jeans, while I, on the other hand, wear stretch pants and loose, blousy shirts as I suck my stomach in.
5a. Exercise. I do it on occasion, but I feel guilty when I’m P90X’ing for thirty minutes when I know I should be writing. And these days, I’m doing more of #5 than #5a.
6. My children need me. This is the lamest bad excuse of all. My children are grown. They live in San Francisco, two thousand miles away. Of course, when one of them sends me a text message at 2:30 a.m. (which happened two weeks ago), telling me it’s an emergency and asking me to call as soon as I get up, “I don’t care what time it is,” a mother calls. I’m no helicoptering, nosy mother, but I do worry.
7. Words With Friends. This is the devil’s game, my friends. Ask Alec Baldwin. I could hang out all day, but instead I play on my phone and try to limit opening the app unless I really have to. (Yee–ah…like I have to…)
8. Facebook. Thanks to the Facebook Gestapo, I’ve had my friend request-ability temporarily suspended (again), so except for a few brief moments in the morning to post a status update and to make sure my children are still alive, I don’t hang out at the social media web site that won’t allow me to be social. (I know that’s a long sentence. I’m on a roll.)
9. Twitter. Ditto #8.
10. I can’t write because I’m too busy writing a complaint letter to a local restaurant for the crummy treatment I received. (More on this one later.)
None of these excuses is good. Which is why I’m going back to work on the WIP as soon as I finish this.
You should be writing too.