Thursday, July 16, 2009

Procrastination - or as I call it, Organizing

Okay, I've started the third book in the Niki Alexander series. I have so many ideas for it and really want to storyboard the plot so I have a visual.

Speaking of visuals, you should have seen my writing office at home. Stacks of paper everywhere. Books tumbling out of the book shelves two-deep and crammed to the top of the shelves. Totally unworkable. Boxes of stuff in the way of getting to my trusty laptop. When I finally opened my computer, there were hundreds of emails to go through.

You see, I set priorities. I couldn't organize or clean house while writing the first two books and two short stories. They were my priorities. On one hand there was cleaning the house. On the other, writing the books. What would you choose? Working a day job left only so many hours in a day or a week to finish the writing projects.

Now straightening up my office became my priority because I couldn't find anything - like bills, contracts, research, mail, CDs. And I can only concentrate on one project at a time. Reminds me of when I took up sewing years ago when the children were small. I couldn't write while I was sewing an outfit until I finished that particular project. I couldn't sew until I finished a writing project.

So after four weekends of cleaining, I had eight hefty bags and eight paper bags of files that I discarded because they were years old and never looked at anymore. I took out all my books from the shelves and re-arranged them. I alphabetized all the hardcovers, but not the paperbacks. Gee, I can now see what I have. And what I have is no more room for books on my four bookshelves. I couldn't buy another book. (Of course, I just bought James Rollins' newest and Megan Abbott's, because I went to their signings. How could I not???) Signings and Murder By The Book are my weaknesses.

After I cleaned and vacuumed my newly organized office, I checked out my bedroom, closet, bathroom and kitchen. Had to do those, too. Actually that only took one weekend, believe it or not.

So now I'm ready to write. Well . . . there is the pictures in my office to hang, getting the clothes together to give to Goodwill, getting my bank statement to match my checkbook, and the mid-year financial statement to prepare and send to Mystery Writers of America.

Then I can start writing. Or, at least outlining or storyboarding. (Is that as bad as waterboarding?)