procrastination

Killing time #AtoZChallenge – Peculiar ‘Pen fellows’ – Quirks only a writer can understand

peculiar penfellows

 

KKilling time

As writers we’re well acquainted with procrastination. It’s an art we’ve cultivated, and cleverly honed. Sometimes, we even convince ourselves it’s part of the process. Of course, if we didn’t find opportunities to escape, we might go crazy with all the creative juice coursing through our veins. See – there’s always justification for losing hours watching Comic-Con panels (or is that just me?)

I’ve talked about the internet being our friend, and in this case, it lets us procrastinate to our hearts consent. Perhaps it indulges us a little too often, and there should be some sort of dalliance protocol – like parental control for writers.

If we manage to stay away from the web, from getting sucked into social media, or YouTube videos to feed our habit, it doesn’t end there. No, we realise that our books need to be reorganised, perhaps alphabetised by author instead of title, or sorted according to genre. I could go on. The list is endless, and whatever pressing project we discover to kill time, eventually we have to get back to work.

procrastination.gif

Thanks for stopping by

Mel

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You’ve got something stuck between your teeth – inspired by One-Liner Wednesday

I was going to take part in One-Liner Wednesday again today, until I saw Linda’s contribution and I couldn’t get it out of my head. If you’re here expecting an inspirational or humerous quote, I must apologise – I wrote a short piece of fiction instead. I just couldn’t help myself 🙂

Busted

Riley crept into Merc Hall like the animal he undoubtedly was; all stealth and sanguine movement. Once a prominent government building, it now served as a beacon in the aftermath of war – a sanctuary for those like him. A mercenary for hire. The energy of the place pulsed along his skin, perhaps the result of so many hunters under one roof. Even subdued by sleep he could feel the danger they represented.

Tonight it only confused his wolf, because he could sense an underlying threat. He knew something or someone was waiting for him in the dark.

Using his night vision to navigate the corridors, he focused on his surroundings. It was hard to rein in the beast after so much freedom, and tonight had been all about the darker side to his nature. His claws pricked at his skin in anticipation, but he didn’t relinquish control. Not when his nose had picked up the scent coming from his room.

Friend not foe. He knew who it was before he heard her voice.

“Relax, wolf-man, there are no monsters in this closet.” The words were pitched at the perfect level for his hearing, despite the door between them.

“Shit,” he muttered, turning the handle. “How many times do I have to tell you I don’t need an upgrade?” His gaze narrowed on Maddison. She had made herself comfortable on the floor, her back against his bed. “And,” he growled, stepping into the room and closing them in. “Closet or not, it’s private. Which means.” He paused to show off a little fang. “You’re invading my space.”

It didn’t surprise him when she rolled her eyes. “Changelings,” she said, on a sigh. “Always so damn territorial.”

He wanted to smile so badly his jaw ached. “Why are you here, Maddy?”

“I was worried about you.” She got to her feet in a quick, fluid motion, which was almost feline.

“Now you’re just trying to piss me off.”

Her grin was sly. “What? I can’t be concerned for the big, bad wolf?” She jabbed him lightly on the arm. “Look, I know danger is part of the job description and, let’s face it, trouble tends to follow you around. But you’re hiding something, and I wanted to make sure it didn’t get you killed.”

Riley didn’t respond right away. He walked over to the portable fridge to grab a beer. “I don’t need a keeper, Maddy, and I’m not hiding anything. I just needed to blow off some steam.”

Her hand reached out to snatch the bottle, but her eyes never left his. “Bull. Shit.”

The growl came out before he could stop it, which annoyed the hell out of him. He rarely lost his cool. “You’re not going to let this go are you?” he asked, dropping to sit cross-legged on the floor.

Maddison followed his lead, her green eyes sharp and assessing as they met his. “I guess it’s a moot point, since you’ve obviously taken care of the problem.” Her body relaxed the moment the words left her mouth.

“You seem pretty sure about that.” He let out a long sigh, tired of the secret anyway. “Look, it was personal, okay. I found out who attacked Simmons and I needed to take care of it. I owed him.” Truth be told, he owed nobody more than the woman in front of him. Maddison hadn’t known Simmons well, but she would never question his right to avenge a friend’s death.

“Ah, so because Jonas ordered you to stay out of it, you had to keep a low profile,” Maddy said, before taking a swig of beer. “That explains the sneaking around.”

“I don’t sneak,” he muttered, then scowled for good measure. “And Jonas might be leader of the pack, but he doesn’t know everything.”

“Aw,” she said, toeing his boot with her own. “I’ve never been a member of a pack.”

His wolf grinned at her teasing. “Shut up, Maddy.”

She tipped the bottle towards him. “Fine, I’ll let it drop. On the condition that you take back-up next time.”

“If there is a next time, I’ll take you along. How about that?”

“Now we’re talking,” she said, a little too excited at the prospect of getting her hands dirty.

She was true to her word though. She didn’t hound him for details as they shared the beer and talked of their active assignments.

An hour later she took the hint and stood to leave. “See you at feeding time,” she said, strolling to the door.

“Maddy?” She paused to look back at him, one eyebrow raised in questions. “How did you know? That I found them tonight?”

“Please,” she said, with her customary eye-roll. “There’s little that gets by me in this place.” She paused again on the threshold. “Oh, and by the way…you’ve got something stuck between your teeth.”

***

I hope you enjoyed my little dalliance.

Thanks for stopping by.

Mel

A Sweeping Glance

Daily Prompt: Those Dishes Won’t do Themselves (Unfortunately)

What’s the household task you most dislike doing? Why do you think that is — is it the task itself, or something more?

Cleaning toilets – definitely. I don’t need to analyse that too deeply to find the reason. I have an overactive imagination and it runs riot whenever I enter a bathroom armed with bleach, cleaning cloths, and detergent.

I’ve always wanted a maid, or here in the UK, a cleaner. As it turns out, that position was filled by me when I became a mother!

The sad truth is, I’m a scatterbrain. I don’t remember to do half of the things I’m supposed to, so putting the washing in, or ironing a pile of clothes is pretty low down on my list of priorities. Seriously, I’m in no danger of become Monica Geller. I just don’t have that much commitment to my chores. I have a cluttered brain, which is not the same as disorganised one (I know exactly where things are stored) and this translates to my living environment.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s clean. When I notice the dust (before I can write my name in it), I get out the polish and go crazy with a duster. I’m actually a good cleaner. I’m very thorough. Everything is dragged out to be buffed, cleaned and polished into submission, before its put back again. Granted not necessarily in the same place.

I found a quote that sums it up nicely;

I have sporadic OCD cleaning moments around the house. But then I get lazy and I’m cured. It’s a very inconsistent personality trait – Chris Hemsworth

Who needs consistency!

I enjoy to mix it up a little, so once I start something I see it through and, like my editing approach, I aim to improve whatever I’m working on. On those occasions I like to find a new place for things, to imitate order among chaos.

As long as my home is clean and relatively tidy, I’m happy. If I’ve had a hectic day (or two), and haven’t caught up on the jobs piling up in the house, this can affect my mood – beginning a vicious circle in which I beat myself with an ever increasing stick. That’s the real part I dislike about housework. The pressure we can sometimes put on ourselves. The feelings of inadequacy if we can’t fit everything in.

Or that could just be the excuse I use for neglecting my chores! Generally I view my surroundings with no more than a cursory glance. My head is usually too full of other things. As my Dad used to say ‘I’m away with the fairies!’

It reminds me of a greeting card I once received, which still tickles me today;

My idea of housework is to sweep the room with a glance – Erma Bombeck

There are some extremely entertaining quotes about housework. If you’re in the mood for a little research, or a pick me up when you really don’t want to tackle that pile of dishes, you should take a look.

One of my favourite quotes is related to children. I’m sure at one time or another I was better at picking up after my girls. Now I understand that I’d spend far too much time and energy following them around or asking them to put things away, that I’ve developed new tactics. Mostly that’s a middle ground; something I can live with since I’m not the tidiest person in the world. Of course then there’s the whole thing about teaching our children, being a good influence and arming them with skills for life. But that’s an entirely different post!

I’m sure you’ve read the quote before, but to me, it epitomises my thoughts on the subject.

Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing is like shovelling the walk before it stops snowing – Phyllis Diller

I can’t end the piece without referring it back to writing in some form or another. Agatha Christie once said the best time to plan a book is while doing the dishes. I can see where she’s coming from. Ideas always come to me when I’m doing something else, usually driving. It’s nice to be able to do a menial task and let your mind wander. There are two benefits; one is clearly that the chore is done before you’ve even realised it, and the other is that you’ve got the perfect excuse to plan and create without interruption.

I’m sure you have a few favourite quotes, or even funny stories about avoiding those dreaded chores. Avoidance goes hand in hand with procrastination and we can all excel at that!

Thanks for reading.

Mel

The quotes are taken from www.psychologytoday.com – Article by Stephanie Sarkis (www.stephaniesarkis.com). Copyright 2012. Sarkis Media LLC.

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