Tag Archives: family

Sabotage

9 Oct

No, it isn’t just a Beastie Boys song.

Whether you like it or not, life will always try to sabotage creative works. Just as soon as you sit down to write, the phone rings, the dog has an accident, or the washing machine begins to spew suds all over your laundry room. It feels like the whole universe is plotting against you to prevent you from writing. That’s just how it is. No use complaining or trying to prevent it. It is an unstoppable force of nature. The only thing to do to save your sanity is  to recognize it and accept it.

For me, sabotage comes in various forms.

Self Sabotage: I sabotage myself accidentally on purpose.

Example: I sit down at my computer to write. First, I decide to check my emails. Then I will start to write, or so I tell myself. An hour later, I am trying to beat my high score on the Phineas and Ferb game on the Disney Channel website.

Familial Sabotage: My lovely family members also work as saboteurs on the side. They don’t do it on purpose, but somehow, they have an impeccable ability to interrupt me at the exact time I am just about to reach my writer’s climax.

Example: I love my husband to death. He is very supportive of my writing. But for a week straight, he somehow always interrupted me every time I sat down to write. During my lunch break, as soon as the pen hit paper, he would call my cell. When I finally managed to escape to my writer’s office in the basement, fire up the computer, and start typing, the inevitable sound of his footsteps would thunder through the basement not five minutes later, right on time.

Furry Family Members Sabotage: My dog’s thought process: “Oh, she has the computer in her lap and looks all comfy on the couch. Time to piss.”

Example: My dog, Tama, is as annoying as he is cute. I could be up and about the house for a whole hour, offering him a chance to go outside every fifteen minutes or so. Did he take those ample chances to do his duty? Hell no! But without fail, the second I sit down with the computer to start writing, he is at the door giving me the you-better-get-moving-or-your-carpet-will-become-a-nice-shade-of-yellow look.

Technological Sabotage: Whether it is the dryer, the washing machine, the computer, or the entire electrical grid, if something can go wrong, it will.

Example: I get home from work, all revved up and ready to write, only to discover my water heater had finally given up the ghost, but not before flooding my entire basement. Talk about raining on my writing parade.

So these are a few examples I could think of. Like I said before, there is no use in trying to avoid it or fight it. Shit happens. Grab a shovel. Take care of it. Then write and pray the universe will give you more time before sending shit your way again.
C. L. Parson

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Making Time

26 Sep

I was out to dinner with my mentor and we were both complaining about not having the time to write. We asked ourselves the reason for putting our art on the back burner. We came up with a spectrum of reasons from guilt to America’s puritan heritage. Would it be considered selfish to spend my time writing a fictional novel that has not made me one red cent or washed one dirty dish instead of doing something else that others may deem “more productive”? How could I battle my guilt and self-loathing for locking myself in a room with my computer when I could be spending more time with my family?

For me, it was about making the time for my writing when and where I could avoid the guilt and distraction. After looking at how I spent my time during the day, I decided that my lunch break would be perfect. It would give me an hour where I’m away from everyone and everything and I could just write.

Easier said than done. There are days where I am lazy, and I rather spend my mid-day break watching stupid YouTube videos than write. To be honest, there have been times where I skipped my hour-long writing session. However, these days are few and far between.

It is much easier to write once you have the momentum going. It is like brushing your teeth or your daily BM. Your mind knows what is coming next, so it transitions into writing mode much faster and easier than it would if you hadn’t been writing everyday.

Once I made the time for my writing, I was able to finally finish my book. Maybe it will work for you too.

 

C. L. Parson

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