Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Eight Ways to Procrastinate from World Building

I’ve been blog tagged – as you do, by Annie who has asked: “What are the 8 things you do to avoid writing?” Today was set aside as ‘World Building’ day for Annie and I, in anticipation of NaNo, so I have chosen to write the eight things you can do to avoid world building.” Sadly – this post is in fact not fiction.

1 Call it world building
In doing so it sensitises all those ‘world building’ antennae that then fire off into all the synaptics connections that will set up the path of most resistance to actually begin this exercise.

2 Go around to a friend’s house
In doing so you are deluding yourself to the fact that you are actually going out to do ‘said task’ and removing yourself from all possible modes of procrastination at home – such as cleaning the toilet, doing dusting and folding Mt Washmore down to the carpet.

3 Go out for coffee
Quite honestly this should not have been an issue, after all I am meant to be coffee free (see just look at my perfectly still hands and how they don’t shake and tic!) so discovering there was no coffee in Annie’s freezer should in reality have just moved us on to the next cupboard, along with the question “Which tea would you like.” But no! Out I went for Rainforest Organic coffee (only the best!) which meant also browsing through the bakery section, the gourmet cheese section, the chocolate and confectionary isle and stopping by the fresh flowers on the way out, consumed with the indecision of whether flowers would assist in the process. I obviously made the wrong decision and should have bought the marked down flowers.

4 Beg visitors to stay – in a subtle and non pathetic way
When I got home from the supermarket, sans flowers but laden down with coffee (how special is it to arrive back from the shops with the actual item you went out to get?), savoury biscuits for the kids and some chocolate Annie was entertaining a friend who had dropped in quickly, to drop something off. Some how we all ended up at the table, coffee in hand, strudel cut up and conversations floating about as to what we had all been doing. An hour later …. it was definitely time to start world building again. At which point, Annie went out to find the hand out we’d given at Sonny Whitelaw’s workshop back in June … because we were getting organised about NaNo back then and world building.

5 Check your stats
This did not include getting out the tape measure to see if my bust was bigger and my butt and waist smaller. This is my favourite means of procrastination, so while Annie was finding the handouts, I dropped by Reclaim Sex After Birth to see what the click through rate is, how many people are on the website, what pages are attracting the most traffic. Just paranoid stuff like that. It wasn’t really meant to be a diversion, as we’d been sitting around talking about the Reclaim project. I off handedly asked Annie about the traffic arriving at one of her other sites Birth Orgasmically and she had no idea where the stats package was on cpanel. Not missing an opportunity to learn something, it was off to cpanel to explain the intricacies of AwStats, what they mean and how you can use them to create changes in your website … and keep yourself safely distanced from world building.

6 Get involved with a good cause
I didn’t have to look far. With cpanel open and Annie composing an email to a friend about Orgasmic Birth we started on discussions, which ultimately led me to sit and write an extensive email to the film maker Debra Pascali-Bonaro about some thoughts I had to do with marketing and protecting the branding integrity. Because suddenly I am an expert on this topic. An hour later …..

7 Search the internet for a good name for a new planet
Annie having completed her email and having foofed around on the internet a bit decided it was time to get the kids into the car, pick up her fruit and veggies and her eldest son. This was going to give me time to begin world building. “I’ll put you to shame,” I called out and she reversed out the drive way. I did put her to shame … I typed one question and put the word “Earth” below it. I realised that before I could continue to describe the familiarity of my planets, I had to actually name the other planet. I knew what I was looking for – something to do with bees, hymen, melissae (spurred on the Dr Who reference in the final episodes). Searching for anything on the internet invariably leads you away from where you started, on all sorts of tangents …

8 Download a big persons colouring in book of ancient Greek Muses
Yes this was the tangent that I ended up on. I sadly am a huge fan of colouring in (because as a kid I guess I substituted great colouring-in for a perceived lack of creative talent)

It seems regardless of how far you try to run or hide from you Muse … all roads lead back to her. I don’t imagine she’s got the Mother-style hands on the hips and the tut-tut going on .. I imagine a cheeky smile on her face, perhaps a little charged from far too much caffine, a half eaten packet of Rollo’s in her creased white linen pants and an optimistic desire to do it all over again tomorrow.

PS: as an aside – writing this blog post rates as the 9th way of avoiding World Building – but I guess I didn’t need to tell you that.

PS: I can tick the following items from Annie’s list of ways to avoid writing

  • I created a new folder called world building (sadly this took about one second)
  • I tried to do research – and landed at the colouring book site
  • Worried about the amount of traffic but did stay away from Facebook!
  • I did go out to the shops – though my family wont stave off starving with the coffee that was bought
  • As for pantries, bathrooms, shop etc … Annie did that yesterday :)

Picture of the Collaged 8's from Claudecf on Flickr


Damaria Senne said...

My suggestion for number 10. Make a list of all the things you need to get down to the business of world-building, including old maps, some history books and Damaria Senne's guide to world building:-)

@Annie - Thanks. I desperately really needed to find another writer's blog to explore while procrastinate.

Jodi Cleghorn said...

Thanks Damaria ... as I continue on my path of procrastination (not just from world building but also writing two important articles) I'll drop over to your place to have a read. Put the kettle on ... I'm on my way :)

Catherine said...

or you could look at each of your actions as proposed laws in a world without guilt...a world with no agreed name, a world where their Goddess is actually someone you see down the shops...

Where each supposed avoidance of a goal is actually a step closer?

Just maybe