Expect Publication

Feeding the Writer with Kim Hooper: The culture of writing–everything from books to contests to nurturing our inner writer

An article in the last issue of Psychology Today states that procrastination is driven by certain factors, including: expectation of success, need for immediate gratification, and impulsiveness.  I can re-word this to say, “I’m screwed when I sit down to write because: I’m not that confident, I crave reward too much (and insta-reward would be nice), and I’m very easily distracted by People.com.”

I like to think I write “just for fun.” That’s what I tell people. The truth is I want to be a published novelist. That’s the gratification I seek. I’m afraid it’ll never happen, so I say with a casual shrug, “Maybe I’ll get published, but I don’t really care.” I avoid disappointment that way, right? Wrong.  It’s still there, threatening me when I turn on the computer. No wonder I end up at People.com.

At the risk of sounding too New Age-y, overcoming procrastination (aka writer’s block) can begin with envisioning reaching a goal, whatever it is. This is kind of along the lines of “If you build it, they will come,” the “it” being self-confidence, and the “they” being the words. For me, when I’m stuck, the mantra becomes this: Expect to get published, and you’ll start writing.