Procrastination is one of my greatest talents, so I thought I would share some terrific methods to avoid writing, editing, or any other work you know you must do, but would really rather not.
10. Housework. Even with the kids grown and gone, there's still an awful lot of housework to do. I don't actually do any of it, mind you, but I think about it a lot. A big job like that requires a plan.
9. Email. I belong to a bunch of authors' lists, and get dozens of emails from other writers each day. Reading all those messages and following their links could take me a week, if I pace myself properly.
8. Facebook. There are far more authors out there than I can keep track of by email. The ones I don't hear from directly, I'll find on Facebook. If I really need to procrastinate, I'll post comments on their walls, then check back every twenty minutes to see if anyone "liked" what I said!
7. Chatting on the phone with my son. He's an actor in New York which means he needs someone to help him fill the time when he should be learning his lines. A mother's work is never done.
6. Texting with my daughter. We can keep a conversation going for hours, or until our cell batteries die. If she's not available, I'll just poke her on Facebook. (She's also a writer. Need I say more?)
5.Training the dog. We have a puppy--he's a mutt, but such a cutie. We've been taking him to obedience school, but he can still be a handful, especially as he's gotten bigger. He needs his training every day, or he'll never pass his Canine Good Citizen test. Of course, he can always take the test again later.
4. Clearing off Tivo.
It doesn't clear itself, you know! Well, actually it does, but if I let it do that, I might lose some long-lost adaptation of a Jane Austen novel picked up by my wish list. As a life member of the Jane Austen Society of North America, I would consider that quite a monstrous thing indeed!
3. Digging up ancestors. Well, not literally. My mom gave me a subscription to Ancestry.com to learn more about our forebears. But it's a never-ending chain. There are always more ancestors to discover. Upside? I've located several distant cousins whom I now track on email and Facebook!
2. Talking with my husband. A good marriage requires work, so we'll often sit around and talk about the work we plan to do when we're through sitting around talking to each other. Yup. He's a writer, too.
1. Making up Top Ten lists.
Phew! That was exhausting.
. . . I believe I'll take a nap.
(This originally appeared in the December 2011 issue of Bethlehem Writers Roundtable, a publication of the Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC.)