Schedules, Shame, and the Demon in my Computer
When to read, when to write, when to get drunk and thrown out of the local watering hole?
It’s all a matter of self control, and some of us just don’t have it. Recently as I reread Stephen King’s On Writing, I noted his strict daily regimen. Almost as quickly, I noted my lack of said self control.
It’s not that I haven’t tried to set a schedule for myself. In fact, I’ve set more schedule’s than I care to remember. The problem is following them. I suppose I like the idea of it more than I like the actual practice.
In my head, I imagine waking with the birds and clearing my head with a nice hot shower. Then, as the sun continues to rise, I make a hearty breakfast and steaming coffee from freshly ground beans. The new day beckons me, and since it’s so early and I have the whole day ahead of me, I go out for a morning hike with my dog. Refreshing.
As the eight o’ clock hour approaches, I prepare a new pot of coffee and sit down for a three hour session of writing. My fingers flash fast across the keys as I transfer every thought onto the page. Time passes.
Eleven o’ clock. Time for a light lunch accompanied by CNN, or maybe my new issue of Cemetery Dance. Noon brings some outdoor activities. Another hike perhaps? Or maybe some yard work or gardening, followed by my second three hour writing session at two.
A beautiful picture, no doubt. My mind reels at the sheer idealism. But the truth that emerges the day after such a visionary treat is sobering.
I wake at nine thirty after a night of debauchery and think, “It’s still early.” But after a shower and surfing the internet, I suddenly realize an hour has passed. No time for breakfast or a morning hike after all. I brew a quick cuppajoe from pre ground beans, and the product tastes like sawdust. I spit it out, cursing. Not a great start.
Convinced the day could still be saved, I head to my computer, where I’m distracted by e-mails and twitter for another hour. There’s a demon in my computer; I know it. I decide I need to relax with a good book, but after only twenty minutes, I black out. Waking four hours later in a puddle of sweat and shame, I slink off to the bar.
Idealism can be a brutal bitch when confronted with reality.
What’s your daily schedule? Have you managed to whip the procrastination devil on the ass and reclaim your day?