This week’s challenge is to finally draft an article for publication in a professional journal.
This is something which has been on my mind for sometime. It is also something I have been encouraged to do by my peers. Writing about what you do each day, you would think would be easy, but the prospect of scrutiny by your colleagues and peer group, potentially nationally, can make it very daunting indeed!
Preparation will be the key. Research on similar articles and constructive comment from trusted colleagues will be invaluable. After which I shall tackle it the same way I do with all my writing; swiftly in my trusted notebook during the girls nap time!
“The practice of carrying out less urgent tasks in preference to more urgent ones.
Putting off impending tasks to a later time.”
Although I am sure I had heard of the word procrastination before, I only managed to put it into context in my life when I started writing more earnestly two years ago.
I realised, with some surprise, that I procrastinate all the time! Thankfully not to such an extent that it impedes me in my job, but enough, in particular at home. I put off tasks in favour of other, sometimes more pleasurable tasks, sometimes because I felt the task less important, or that it would wait. Yet in reality they were just as important.
Piano practice was the classic one. Homework was possibly easier to do, or I would have received a telling off for not doing it, so it was completed over and above practice. A rational excuse you may think. But ultimately I may have been more able to study music, had I practiced more!
Now I have realised a term for this behaviour, strangely I am far more aware of when it occurs and as such I am much better at task organisation and prioritisation.
We should all consider when we are procrastinating over a task. Just realising changes your organisation. I can now also identify tasks in advance that I know I will procrastinate over, and get straight on with them!
In addition, the word itself is so good!
So think, do you procrastinate? When do you procrastinate?
So, my challenge a couple of weeks ago was to put pen to paper each day for 7 days. I succeeded!
I got off to a great start on Monday using an exercise entitled Zoom In. This involves placing yourself high above a location (in this case the final scene of my story) and working your way down noting points from all the senses. A little like a bird swooping in. It enabled me to get right into the scene.
Tuesday and Wednesday were a little more sporadic and all I managed to write on Wednesday was my journal, but as that falls by the wayside most days it was nice to curl up in bed and allow a flow of words about life to fall to the page.
For the remaining days I was able to build upon Mondays work, complete a further exercise from a writing magazine and write an entry for this blog. Opportunities included writing on a train journey, sat in the car in a quiet spot whilst the girls had their afternoon sleep and simply at the dining room table.
I discovered the trick was not to procrastinate (I love that word!) and always have a couple of notebooks with different ideas and projects to hand so you can get straight on with an idea. I do find the smaller the amount of time, the quicker I can assimilate my thoughts and really write something useful. I recently had a whole day to myself and only wrote the most meaningful prose in the last couple of hours!
I highly recommend this challenge!