Wednesday, 7 September 2016

IWSG: Finding Time to Write


It's time for September's IWSG's blog post, which seems to have come around faster than the Enterprise travelling at warp nine. At least it feels that way to me.

What is the group's purpose? To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds.

September's IWSG question: 

How do you find the time to write in your busy day?

This month's question left me with a dilemma, because I'd already discussed finding time to write last month. To be fair, I talked more about a lack of time rather than the finding of it. However, the group members who read my post did offer some fantastic advice, some of which I'm now implementing. Housework? Not until I've hit the keyboard. Asking for time-out to write and not feeling guilty? Yes, and yes. Saying no to people without having to justify my reasons? I'm working on it.

Today I'd like to talk about a condition that can be a challenge when it comes to making time to write - Clutter Phobia. The slightest thing being out of place or unwanted interloper will have me rearranging my entire writing area. Desk messy? Take everything off, clean, and then rearrange it. Mountains of writing stuff needing to be sorted and refiled for the thousandth time? Do it now, because you sure can't start writing until it's done. 

It's not as bad as it sounds, and I'm sure a large part of it is procrastination. However, I've considered this issue for some time now and decided on two separate strategies to stop the constant need to tidy and rearrange my desk. 
  1. Go through years worth of writing detritus and separate it into 'keep, place in garage for storage, or bin'. Store everything in the garage except for laptop, printer, stationery, relevant writing books, and the files and notebooks for what I'm currently writing. 
  2. Every evening, give my desk and writing area a quick tidy and polish before bed. No major re-arranging allowed. 
I completed step one on Sunday. I went through the usual stages of denial, including telling myself I needed everything and the most random of objects was a much-needed writing totem. After a couple of traumatic hours, with boxes being packed and unpacked and packed again, three boxes of writing stuff went into the garage. What was left went into a trunk I bought a couple of weeks ago, which is to the left of my desk. As you can see, there really is nothing left to rearrange. At least that's the plan.

Clutter phobia be gone!

20 comments:

  1. There you go! No excuses now and nothing holding you back.

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  2. Wish I HAD to organize. I find it overwhelming to go through my piles. Although, I did it today. One stack at a time.

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    1. There is something therapeutic about de-cluttering, but only when done in moderation. One stack at a time sounds like the right balance.

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  3. Perhaps its not just saying no to people, but to events and things also. Cleaning up clutter is a fidgiting activity for me. Helps me take a break without taking a break.

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    1. You're absolutely right about events and so on. It's too easy to say yes to everything.

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  4. Well done Ellie - that's definitely what I need to do ... great post for me to get stuck in and follow you .. cheers Hilary

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    1. Thanks, Hilary. I hope the motivation worked.

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  5. LOL! I put on blinders when I go to write. Been at this long enough, I know if I don't, I'll never get anything done. The mess can wait. The writing can't.

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    1. I'm beginning to think you're right. There's always something that needs sorting or cleaning. The world won't end if it waits a while!

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  6. LOL I suffer from that, too. I'm very organized and chaos distracts me.

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    1. I guess some of us aren't made for mess and chaos. I wonder if there's a boot camp we can attend? Chuckle.

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  7. Good for you! If I were distracted by clutter, I'd NEVER get any writing done. I prefer to thing of my clutter as organized chaos. :)

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    1. I'm thinking of buying blinkers and training myself to ignore clutter! Or perhaps I should adopt your way of thinking?

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  8. I prefer having a tidy place to write too. There was a TV show I used to watch where they'd organize people's spaces and have them decide what to keep, what to store, what to give away, and what to trash. It's a good idea to do that every so often, although I tend to procrastinate and just shove things away in a drawer or closet to keep them out of sight and out of mind. Hehe!

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    1. Ha. My wardrobe is turning into a dumping ground! I really should sort it one day.

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  9. Can you come over to my office and do that too? :) Looks awesome. I have to share my space with a hubby who leaves papers everywhere and a six-year-old who leaves everything everywhere!

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    1. Name the date and time. I love organising. Oh, hang on. That's what I'm supposed to being doing less.

      The thought of sharing an office makes me sweat. Well done for coping!

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  10. Besides writing spec fic, sounds like you may have another book somewhere inside of you: "Clutter Phobia Be Gone." You never know...

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    1. Ha. They say story ideas can come from the strangest of places.

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