Quite an oft-expunged topic on my old blog was a battle I have with my inner psyche to get motivated with a project. It’s something that troubles me quite a lot; I know I want to do stuff, but am sometimes frightened to actually buckle down and get started.
Why is this? I suppose the ultimate issue is a fear of starting a project proper that I have had ideas about with writing that ends up being substandard and crap. Of course, the first draft of anything is crap, so this concern is a nonsense. As long as I get the key ideas and thematic stuff down I should be good to refine it later.
Today I’m supposed to be starting the proper edit of Colonisation; it’s meant to be out in literally 70 days. So how am I planning to motivate myself? I’ve come up with a battle-plan:
- Two hours of solid editing is my goal; I realise my deadline is pretty tight, and from some of my feedback, I’ve quite a bit to do. Colonisation is 78,000 words that I’ve got to go over, but if I do manageable but meaningful chunks, it should be fine.
- Avoid distractions! Distraction is my worst enemy in this regard. So, today, I’ve a few key steps that I’m going to stick to:
- Set a time to begin the session, plan for any chores to do beforehand, and when that time comes… get to work.
- Disable all internet connectivity. Dropbox can sync my work at the end of the two hours.
- Restart my computer. I use sleep mode all the time, and it preserves browsing sessions almost indefinitely. If I restart, I’ll have none of my distracting programs open, and more importantly, no preserved tabs!
- Obsessing over all the criticism will get me nowhere. Colonisation needs quite a bit of work; I’ve had some really quite wondrous feedback to go by. However, I’m not going to be acting on all of it in Colonisation directly, as some of the pertinent questions that have been asked will be answered in the sequel I plan to write. It’s good that the points people have raised have got me thinking how to answer them; I just don’t need to worry too much about answering them all in the Colonisation work.
I think that’s enough procrastinating! I hope these tips prove helpful for others if they have motivational issues. I’d like to do the occasional motivation post every so often.