Last time I told everyone how I got over my writers block by creating a plan. Sadly, my happiness was short-lived, as I became so obsessed with Twitter that reading, retwitting and commenting on tweets has left me with literally no time to write. I was perfectly content with spending hours laughing about other people jokes, not realising that I hardly wrote any of my own anymore. My followers list kept growing and the few jokes I twitted, got retwitted dozens of times. As far as I was concerned, I was doing well by collecting fans who will eventually read and love my book. Right?
My family certainly agreed. They are very supportive of everything I do.
“Oh, you are going back to school? We are so proud!”
“Oh, you are quitting school? Wise decision!”
“Gonna be a sculptor? You are so talented!
“Kiteboarding sounds like fun!”
“Getting a divorce? We never liked him anyway!”
“You are the best actor we know!”
“Two new jobs in one year? You go, girl!”
“You have a blog AND a Twitter account? You are a social media mogul!”
So it was a huge shock to the system when my agent took me out to dinner and proceeded to give me the third degree about “wasting time on Twitter”. He was adamant that I “quit that nonsense” and “finish the book instead”. I tried to protest and paint a vision in which thousands of Twitter followers will be eagerly awaiting the release of my book, to which he asserted that if I spend all my time twitting, there will be no book to speak of.
Somewhere in the back of my mind I had an inkling that constant twitting, retwitting and following was possibly a massive waste of time. I also became concerned that I started “speaking in tweets” in my regular life and interrupting engaging conversations with “I’ve got to tweet this!” So, I did the unthinkable and listened to my agent’s advice.
I am happy to report that, of course, I didn’t listen to ALL of his advice. I have since completely ignored the bit about “pacing myself”. Instead, I made a quick Excel spreadsheet that has set out a goal of a thousand words per day and I have been tracking my daily progress there. It’s like my own NaNoWriMo, with a slightly more manageable goal and extended deadline.
I am also happy to report that I am now nearly Twitter-free and instead completely obsessed about the two lines (blue-the goal and red-the progress) creeping up across the page. In fact, I have managed to use this new bit of inspiration to average nearly 1,500 words per day! The first draft is at 38K words and I’m on track to hand my surprised agent a thick printout at the end of January.
I can only hope that nothing else distracts me in the meantime. Like archery. It’s so cool! I have tried it the other weekend and got a couple of arrows in “the gold”. Do they accept 40-year olds to Olympic teams?