Thursday, July 29, 2010

Embrace the Boredom

So the moving of the boxes is over. Now comes unpacking. It’s only a few boxes because I am only staying with my parents for 4 months, but I still LOATHE unpacking. It’s just so very boring.

Which is why I am here today to tell you to embrace the boredom.

Most people’s minds are filled with clutter. Thoughts of what to make for dinner, and when to pick up the kids, and what’s on TV, and when that next Neil Gaiman book is going to be published fill our minds. Normally we distract ourselves with music and TV and noise while we perform monotonous tasks that busy our hands as they empty our minds.

But as writers, this can be some great time for thinking. We writers are a strange breed, and I am sure most of you have some activity built into your day, even if you don't realize it, that you use as your “writing-thinking-time".

Driving, walking the dog, doing the dishes, and gardening can all be considered WTT activities. You mull over characters and plot their love and demise. No matter what you’re thinking about, it’s good to give you mind some room to breathe. Sitting at the computer, crunching words day in and day out without reprieve can stifle your creativity. Of course you should be productive, whether your writing or editing, but some times you need to just walk away from a writing problem and mull it over.

I find it especially helpful if I use this WTT for specific writing problems. Sometimes I use it to develop a character, or unsnare a plot, or brainstorm for an idea.

So today, even though I dread unpacking, I plan to use this ripe WTT for working on my next novel. Now that pesky things like moving are out of the way, I finally feel like I have the time and energy to focus on my writing again. I got most of the worldbuilding I am going to need at this early stage done, so now it’s time to move onto plot and characters.

Hello WTT!

What about you? When you do like to take time out to think about your writing? What other methods do you use to give yourself a little distance on your writing?


  1. Great post! I definitely use driving time and other boring times like when I do the laundry for dreaming up new story ideas and plotting!

  2. Hi there! is organizing a short story writing contest.

    We do think that you too might have a marvelous story to tell, one that is your own! So if you can compose it in not more than few words, we would want to hear from you. Also, you stand a chance to get your story published on our site and win cash prize of USD 100.

    “Then what are you waiting for? …put on your thinking cap and get writing. For registration and other information check -

    Happy writing!

  3. Thanks Aubrie!

    And thank YOU, Mr. Alberto Reberto for the great opportunity to tell a marvelous story, one that is my own.

  4. Ha ha ha ha, that's awesome spam. I want to know where the bitly link goes! Oh the temptation!!!

  5. I ALMOST went to the link, but given my knack for attracting viruses (virusi?) I figured it was better to not chance it. It fills me with great joy to respond to spam as though it were a real comment. *happy sigh*

  6. Hi Elizabeth - thanks for explaining how to vote for Aubrie's story. I just voted and it worked perfectly. :)

    I totally agree with the WTT concept. I used to take my iPod to walk the dog, but now I leave it at home. I get some of my best thinking done then. I try to pick out a specific problem I need help with before I go, and usually I'll have an answer by the time I get home.