Tami's asked for a list of distractions that are responsible for me not doing what I should be doing -namely writing (or editing, you decide) - for her third request, and it is probably the easiest of my blogging challenges so far. Look no further for...
10 Things That Are Very, Very Bad For Procrastinating Princesses
1 - The Television.
I'm not a huge watcher of television, but I do have my obsessions. I'm a nut for American stuff, from Supernatural to Fringe, from House to Eureka (and a lot of stuff in between). Luckily they don't all schedule at the same time of the year, but there are usually three or four serials that I watch weekly. Not a huge distraction by all means, but a distraction nonetheless. I'm also a nut for the X Factor (American Idol is the equivalent across the pond), and as we are currently in prime X Factor season, I am fearing multiple distractions for the next two months, though thankfully it only applies for a couple of hours at the weekend, so it is workable.
2 - My Job.
I only work sixteen hours a week (barring overtime), but they are all early shifts, so tiredness is a major bane of my life. Unplanned (but totally required) naps eat up several hours a week that could be otherwise more usefully occupied.
3 - Kids.
My son doesn't take a huge amount of my time up as such, but quite a large chunk of my time is swallowed up with pointless arguments and the stress that comes with having a teenager under your roof. My daughter, although not quite nine, takes up even more time with her constant demands for attention, and her inability to understand that she is not the centre of everyones' universe.
4 - Confidence (or lack of it).
Sometimes I think to myself that what I have written is the pantsiest thing ever, and I wonder if editing it is really worth my while. Moods like this are not conductive to getting things done at all. Which leads me to...
5 - Mood Swings.
Yup, I get them a lot. My episodic depression is mostly under control now, but I still get days here and there when all I want to do is sleep, cry, or clean like a mad woman. I have no control over this and just have to go with the flow. Thankfully these days are getting more sporadic, and when I do get them, they only last a day or two at a time.
6 - Facebook.
This is a biggie. I check in several times a day just to be nosy more than anything, but if that was the only thing that distracted me, I wouldn't be worried. It's those silly games, they're a nightmare for people with an addictive nature (like me, for example). I'm talking about Bejeweled Blitz mostly, though the recent discovery of Vegas Nights (very similar to Blitz, but with the added bonus of tournaments) is proving to be as much of an obsession as those shiny gems ever were.
7 - Other Online Duties.
I moderate on the fan fiction forum over at HPANA, and though the site is pretty quiet now that the Harry Potter books are finished, there's still stuff to keep me occupied. We're currently holding our annual fanfic awards, and while I don't really have much to do at present, there will be votes to tally and posts to compose for the results. All new forum posts by members need to be skimmed on a daily basis too to make sure the rules are being followed and nobody needs spanking (or editing, as the case may be).
8 - Reading.
I read every day, and seriously don't see a time when I won't. This is a good thing mostly, but if I really get sucked in to a story, I won't put the book down until I am done. It's a nice habit, no question, but when the Reading Bug attacks me, it's not good for my Writing Mojo at all.
9 - Cleaning.
I'm by no means a clean freak, but one of my coping strategies for my recent descent into madness was housework. Dusting, polishing, vacuuming, cleaning the oven, scrubbing the bathroom.... you name it, I did it. Mostly to eat up the time (which seems to drag terribly when you are feeling down), but also because housework is incredibly mind-numbing, and therefore essential when you want to have a couple of blissful, thought-free hours
10 - Wikipedia.
I use Wiki a lot, mostly because I'm pretty clueless about a ton of stuff and often have to look things up. The problem with Wiki is that they have these lovely, lovely hyperlinks which can take you to magical places where you can find out even more (usually pointless) information. Seriously, it's like that seven degrees of separation thingy. You type in something along the lines of , ooh, I don't know, lets say Jensen Ackles for the sake of argument (*shifty*), and suddenly you are clicking on the link that takes you to the page for one of his movies. Then you come across another actor who interests you, and so you click on his shiny link too. Before you know it, you've clicked about twenty hyperlinks, and three hours later you find yourself wondering why you are reading about soap powder (or something else equally as random).
So there we have it. Ten distractions that usually make me fall off the Writing Wagon. And believe me, that's just the tip of the iceberg....