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It's Nelly's World

I'm Sort of Thinking About Procrastinating

alec vanderboom

1. Write letter to prison pen pal. This will prompt three long letters in return, filled with lists of books read and questions about what you are reading now (letters from prison, primarily), so you feel guilty and have to respond at least once more, and also file the clippings of recipes included and daydream about when you might make the pasta with grilled asparagus and parmesan.

2. Decide to see what's really in that filing cabinet; spend an hour revisiting the "unfinished projects" folder, and marvel that you had some very interesting ideas twenty years ago, and spent considerable time getting halfway into some perfectly viable subjects. Maybe you will come back to them someday, eh.

3. Unload dishwasher. Then write one and one half sentences. Decide laundry needs doing.

4. Pick up Legos from son's bedroom floor. Tomorrow, you can do it again.

5. Recognize that Facebook is a bad way to procrastinate. It's another thing you feel like procrastinating about. Look for ticks on dog instead.

6. Check the National Weather Service. Weather is always useful to know, in case you want to do something other than work.

7. Check email (good for hours).

8. Check the mailbox (if you start early enough in the day, this can mean two or more time-wasting trips).

9. Stack wood (never ends).

10. Start researching weekend trips you might like to take, someday, if the writing gets finished, which it won't now, since you are researching trips.

11. Go outside for a breath of fresh air before tackling another sentence. Notice the garden is full of weeds since yesterday, when you also did this.

11. Go back to the laptop, now in sleep mode, and reread everything you've written previously. Don't write anything new, though; you're exhausted.

11. Get a good night's sleep, so you can write well tomorrow.