As I make a (poor) living from writing, the paid work always comes first as prioritisation goes, but with a little extra zeal I resisted shilly-shallying and enforced certain rules for the paid work – no checking emails mid blog and no faffing about on the internet unless research was really necessary – to get it done as quickly as possible.
Apparently, people get a dopamine hit these days from being able to find out something instantly. Say you are watching a TV programme and you recognise an actor, but can’t remember the name. A quick look at IMDB and you are all the wiser, instead of having to rely on that “A-ha!” 3am moment when said actor’s name finally pops into your head.
I am one of those poor souls, my brain peppered with holes from all those dopamine hits I take throughout the day as random thoughts cross my mind and demand instant answers.
- · Ooh – lamb would be nice on Saturday. How do you cook a leg of it?
- · What’s on at Cineworld on Friday?
- · Am I going to need an umbrella tomorrow – what’s the weather doing on Tuesday?
[Given that I live on the west coast of Scotland, the answer is “raining” more often than not.]
Not giving into those instincts to instantly find out the answers makes you much more efficient – and therefore able to clear the necessary paid work in good time. And that frees up more time for your own creative writing.
Self-discipline needed for creative writing… revelatory, hmm?