I should be writing.
I know we all say it, but now I actually have to mean it. Because I went and did a crazy brilliant stupid thing.
Like so many people, I got fat and lazy over the holidays. And sick. Soooo sick. Getting back into my writing habit has been much harder than expected. I’m way behind schedule for my release of Epoch Gliese; Mass Exodus. Every time I was supposed to be typing words, I was goofing off. And telling myself that I was ‘working’ because it was still Epoch adjacent. Plotting. Podcasts. Books in my genre.
All those things are great, and I do recommend that everyone who wants to write a book, read and listen to their market. However, when it takes the place of the actual writing, then we have a problem. I mean, your butt is already in the seat, so write!
To force that habit on myself, I set my pre-order for book 2 of the series. It’s done. I have no choice but to be finished with the whole thing by April 10th. Well, actually April 5th as most of you know Amazon wants you to be ready at least 4 days before launch.
Therefore, my true drop-dead date for having Epoch Gliese finished is the hilariously appropriate date of April 1st. April Fool’s Day. Of course. It’s a Sunday, and the last weekend day before my launch. That wasn’t my intention. I just pushed it out as far as I could go, which happened to be 90 days from yesterday. The universe sure has a sense of humor.
What have I been doing since Christmas instead of writing? Those Epoch adjacent things that I rationalized weren’t really procrastinating?
My favorite procrastinating tool right now is Plotist. It’s a… plotting website. Imagine that. I love Plotist for so many reasons, but the biggest one is their timeline feature. And all the pretty colors! They’ve also rolled out a Story feature, where you can write the book directly into the site, and export it later. Here’s a pretty picture of the timeline I did for Epoch Earth, the first book.
I love being able to find pictures of my characters and seeing the story plotted out on a timeline helps a lot. On days when I don’t feel like typing… which have been far too many recently… Plotist helps me stay organized and still in the world. The past couple weeks of laziness have seen me spending massive amounts of time on Epoch Gliese’s timeline. I’ve even started working on a Story Grid/Book Architecture version, which isn’t ready for public viewing just yet.
My next favorite procrastinating tool is also one that I hope will help me stop procrastinating. After I set my pre-order date, I plugged my novel and word count goals into Pacemaker. This is another great way to track your projects and stay on course, much like plugging your word count totals into the NaNoWriMo site every November. But this one’s year-round! You can set your pace, like a treadmill, whether you want to work hard up front and give yourself time at the end. Or strong and steady throughout. It’s been a great help to me so far, and it gave me the push I needed when I finished Epoch Earth last year.
And of course, here’s a pretty picture of my graph for Epoch book 1!
Naturally, as I progress through my writing, I’ll have more of a varied graph for this new book. But I still love looking at it.
I should be writing!
Now, spending the time to write this long post would seem counterproductive. I know the entire time I’ve been typing this I’ve been yelling at myself for spending the energy on something that isn’t the new Epoch. However, just with setting the pre-order deadline, I hope this post will help me in the long run. I plan on keeping tabs on myself with this deadline challenge. Coming back here periodically to update you on my progress is a great accountability measure for myself. It will keep me honest and hopefully motivated.
Toasha Jiordano grew up in Florida, which is where her Great Glitch series is set. However, she recently moved to rural South Carolina, with her husband and children. When she’s not writing epic science fiction tomes, she’s ghostwriting other epic tomes in various genres.
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