Saturday, January 18, 2014

Office Jobs — Continued

A recent post discussed the somewhat troubling fact that it is very difficult for me to work on my novel at home.  I listed all the things I could remember doing at home instead of revising my novel.  But when I'm at the office I pursue a variety of tasks.

It's time to add one more activity to that list.  The instructor of the online class I took last fall recommended a number of books to read.  Unfortunately, during the class I read exactly zero of her recommendations.   

Now I am trying to remedy that sad situation.  So, I am reading her first suggestion, A Writer's Time:  Making the Time to Write by Kenneth Atchity. Although I am only a quarter of the way through the book, I am enjoying it immensely and learning a lot.

In the introduction, Mr. Atchity cites the ancient Greeks who divided their lives into periods of seven years and then made plans for that time.  My periods are six years long. They consist of five years teaching and one year of leave, but I feel very classical nonetheless.

Mr. Atchity has many more interesting ideas, such as, one should "write with a purpose."  He mentions someone whose purpose is to make what they write "entertaining enough to compete with beer."

I decided that my purpose in writing is to make what I write so compelling that people will stay up past their bedtime to read more.

Finally, it's important for me to remember that "Discipline, not the Muse, results in productivity."  In other words, I need to figure out a way to work on the novel every day, not just at the office.  I'll get to work on that right away.

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