The Banes of Writing: 10 Things to Avoid

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  1. The job: Yes, work can get in the way of your writing. But you’ve got to pay the bills, right? What to do? Nothing, really. Just keep trudging along and hoping your writing will some day lead you to a better career. Of course that won’t happen if you keep spending your time on the Internet reading lists such as this one when you should be writing.
  2. Television: It’s so alluring, isn’t it? That great big tube with all those fantastic stories coming out of it. And it’s always sitting right there, like a lover who is always waiting for you. Quit being mind blasted by that darn thing! Turn off the tube and get some writing done!
  3. Video games:Gosh, these things are worse than the TV. You start the game up and the next thing you know is ten hours have passed. Jeez, how did that happen? It happened because you got sucked into someone else’s worlds while you should have been paying more attention to your own worlds, the real one and the ones you create.
  4. Internet: Darn you, Internet! You take up so much of my time. You’re entertaining, educational and you allow me to stay in touch with old friends. But I’ve got the write. The Internet must be unplugged. As soon as I finish writing this list.
  5. Books: There’s always a good book around somewhere, isn’t there? It’s calling out to you, “Please, pretty please, pick me up!” But you must resist. There will be time for reading later. You have to write right now, right? Yes. So set aside time for reading at a later hour.
  6. Sleep: Yes, you must avoid sleep if you want to be a writer. You keep hearing all these studies about how the human body needs about 8 hours of sleep a night. Hogwash! You can get by on 2 or 3 hours, right? Because the sooner you get the novel written, edited and published, the sooner you can start living the big life. Oh, to dream. But dreaming means sleep, and that’s a no-no.
  7. Family: You can’t get rid of your family. At least not without going to prison. But they can be a major delay in getting some writing done. The husband needs you to cook dinner. The wife needs you to walk the dog. The kids need help with their homework. Grandpa and grandma are stopping by the chat. The best hope you have is that you will be lucky enough to have an understanding family. Explain to them the importance of your writing time. Hopefully they’ll get it and you can get to typing.
  8. Telephone:Turn off the phone. Unplug it. Throw it away. It always interferes at the most inopportune moments. And when you’re writing, they’re allinopportune moments.
  9. Online forums, blogging, etc.:Yes, I realize I’ve already mentioned the Internet, but I feel blogging and chatting need their own special marker. Why? Because they can seem like writing, but they’re not. Writing is writing. It’s not forum hopping, or chatting online or blogging. Writing is writing. At least if you want to get something accomplished. Blogging can help with promotions, and I suppose technically it is a form of writing, but unless you’re writing your articles or stories or novels on your blog, writing isn’t writing.
  10. This list: Yep, this list is keeping you from writing. Me? I can’t complain. I’m writing this list after all.
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