It is 10.54 am on my day off from my real-world job.
When I decided to work part-time the aim was to spend my day off writing. Get a book published. Uncover that latent dream from underneath the grown-up world responsibilities of kids, mortgage, bills and … well you know the drill.
This morning I was determined. My only responsibility was take a chair into the highschool. It’s an art project for Hippie Child she has to decorate a chair. She picked one up at an op-shop. We just had to get it there.
I decided to take Chandler with me. He’s growing older by the minute. I think his depression has worsened since we lost Abbey. He doesn’t like being left alone all day, and the mournful eyes as we head to the door provide another tickable box on my guilt list (seriously how much guilt can one person load onto themselves?). Probably should mention for the benefit of new readers, Chandler is a dog.
So we pile Chandler and chair into the back seat, only to have Chandler get himself stuck in the back of the chair, not making a sound, just looking at us forlornly from a weirdly twisted position on the back seat. We pull over and manage to extricate him.
Continuing on, we get to school, I am about to jump out and open the door for Hippie Child (she managed to break the interior handle of the front door so now passengers can’t actually open the door to get out of our still-hanging-there car), but apparently that’s a no-go ’cause there are other kids around and that would be embarrassing (could someone please give me a list of what I’m allowed to do and what I’m not). So she winds down the window, sticks her hand out and undoes the door that way (like that’s not awkward).
Chandler and I head back home – you know for me to do that writing I keep talking about.
But first I decide to light a fire, Chandler is shivering and I’m not real warm myself. We discover I can’t light fires. Don’t start judging me, I have plenty of talents, just none of any practical use. After three futile attempts we go the tiny fan heater (which is racking up the electricity bill to a point where we could have taken the entire family to Bali for five nights on what we are paying).
Now, Chandler and I huddled over the fan heater at the computer, it’s time to write. I can’t think of anything to write. I just need to check Twitter for inspiration. Gosh the internet connection is slow. Have we gone over our limit for the month? When does it the new month kick in? Have I paid the bill? Well that’s a way to waste an hour trying to figure all that out on a connection speed reminiscent of the dial-up days of the late 90′s.
I really should put a load of washing on. Hang on it will only take a minute.
Now it’s time to write, but look an email just arrived in my inbox, it’s the latest blog post from Aussie writer, Nick Earls. (That’s what wannabe writers do, subscribe to blogs by those who have actually written books, then waste our time reading their blogs instead of writing our own books).
It appears Mr Earls has been considering the benefit of social media in relation to the sale of product (especially in relation to the sale of his books). Turns out this little blog I’ve been working on, the feeble attempts at growing an audience on Twitter and Facebook, are pointless. Nobody is buying anything much on the basis of social media. Mr Earls suggests even the top dogs in the social media world are getting little return on investment – “Seth Godin works on a figure of 50,000 followers leading to 23 products bought and Thomas Power works on a ratio of 10,000 to 1.”.
Just kill me now!
So figuring that even if I managed to get my book written, nobody is going to buy it anyway I eat half a packet of biscuits (oh yeah the weight loss thing is going great guns too).
I can’t even blame the family for my lack of output today, there’s nobody here distracting me except for the dog, and he hasn’t said a word!
Now completely devoid of motivation I decide to blog about my dispiriting morning attempting to write the great Australian novel (and fill yet another hour of the day).
There is no doubt that one of the key factors in getting a book published is writing the damn thing in the first place. It appears I am struggling at the first hurdle.
What do you do to stop yourself procrastinating?