April 5, 2010

It’s Never Too Late!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ccassello @ 2:41 pm
The time has come for me to keep account of my progress, and lack thereof, on my current writing projects.  I told you that on Saturday I wrote an opening scene for what I plan to be a children’s book.  I did not, however, do any more writing on it yesterday.  It was after all Easter Sunday, so I deserved a day off, right?  That was my rationalization, even though I had an idea floating around in my head.  It was no more that a couple of sentences, not enough to write down, I told myself.

If I had written them down, those couple of sentences probably would have led to a couple of more sentences and I may have ended up with another page of writing, but I did not do it.  I felt a little bad about it because it is so easy for me to fall into bad habits.  One missed day of writing easily becomes two, then three and soon a week or month passes without any progress and I go into a slight depression complaining about why I can’t get over this habit of procrastination, or whatever name you want to call it.  I have learned not to call myself lazy.  That does not help at all.
Perfectionism is more accurate, and it is a curse many writers have to learn to deal with.  We feel that if we don’t have the thoughts fully worked out in our minds to our satisfaction we don’t want to waste time and effort putting them down on paper.  The reality is just the opposite, however.  It is putting down any thought on paper that opens our minds up to new ones that we didn’t even know we had.  This is what Julia Cameron speaks of in her books for writers.
She suggests Morning Pages.  When we wake up in the morning we are to write three pages of anything on our minds, what we were dreaming about, what we think we need to do that day, what we are worrying about, what we think is worth worrying about.  What we don’t want to worry about, etc. 
 I have tried doing this and am amazed at what goes onto those pages.  I get story ideas, I develop thoughts into what I can turn into an essay, I may write a poem, or begin one.  I do not do them immediately when I wake up all of the time, but I do write nearly every day (I do slip up now and then).  If I have a busy schedule and don’t have time to write in the morning, I may write at night before I go to sleep.  Then I report about what I did and how I felt about what I was doing, etc.
If you have not done this, I hope you will try it.  You will probably be as amazed as I have been about what suddenly becomes clear to you when before you were in a state of total confusion.  


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