If there’s one thing I excel at, it’s procrastinating. I think it’s probably what I do best.
I was off work yesterday for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and since I had a long weekend, I had all kinds of plans to get lots of writing done during my time off. I also planned to write several query letters to mail out this week. In three days, I managed to write a total of about five sentences, and I didn’t write a single query letter.
I did go through the Writer’s Market and found numerous publications to query with ideas, so that was an accomplishment. But beyond that, I did nothing productive. Instead, I spent way too much time watching tv, way too much time watching football, and way too much time imitating my cat Nate and his talent for curling up on the couch and sleeping.
This is nothing new for me though, as I’ve always been good at wasting time, and I have trouble forcing myself to work unless I have a deadline. When I was in school, I could never start a project until I knew I had no more time to waste, and the due date was staring me in the face. In the past this was really never a problem for me, as I’ve always worked best when under the gun.
But it is a problem now that I am trying to become established as a writer, as no one is holding any deadlines or due dates over my head, and the only person I have to answer to right now is me. I’m going to have to set up my own due dates, and force myself to be more accountable with time management.
On that note then, I am setting a goal for myself to complete a minimum of five query letters this week, and the due date is Friday. I have a list of publications to query, so there is no excuse at all for not getting these letters written and mailed. Starting today, I’m putting myself under the gun.