Tuesday, October 18, 2011

My Writing Distraction: Checklists

Sometimes it seems like I can only write if I get everything else done first.

Phone Calls
Twitter/Facebook (I'm an author now, this is "professional" social networking)
Paying Bills
Washing Dishes
More Emails
Reading Books (for "research")

I wouldn't say I have one particular vice I go to in order to avoid writing. I'm usually so busy with all these other things, I feel too guilty to spend precious time on Angry Birds. I guess I need to feel I've wasted my time productively.  When my husband gets home at the end of the day, I can list off a whole bunch of things I accomplished! That always feels good until he asks if I got any writing done. :\

The best piece of advice I've received on this so far has been: Make sure you put your writing first. This induces a struggle because...if the writing doesn't get done, nothing else will get done! And if nothing else gets done, my life will grind to a halt! And if my life grinds to a halt, how will I ever write my next book? Etc, etc...

But you know what? All The Things will still be there after I've reached my word count. And as easy as chores and checking off to-do lists may be COMPARED to writing? They're not anywhere near as satisfying to gaze at when they're complete.

Emily Hainsworth is the author of THROUGH TO YOU, (Fall 2012 Balzer+Bray / HarperCollins), a sci-fi novel about a seventeen-year-old boy grieving for his dead girlfriend until he discovers she's still alive in a parallel reality--one where he's the one who died. For more information, visit her website.


  1. I HAVE to make checklists. They are such an essential part of me remembering all the MUST-DOs in my day. But I never put household chores on the list. I always hope someone else (my husband) will do them ...

  2. LOL, yeah I have that hope too, but it usually turns out my husband is hoping the same thing. ;) TO-DO LISTS FTW!