I find that when I spend a day doing writing-related work, but not writing, I go into the wrong rabbit hole and get away from my story. This is a pattern I now recognize.
And as with all patterns, we can look at them as self-contained little programs: they have a trigger, they execute certain actions, and they have an (often elusive) off-switch.
So, now that I am finally recognizing this pattern, I can expect the off-switch, in fact, I can accelerate the program by eliminating many of the repetitive strings of behavior that take place before despair forces a new action (and a new program).
My writing program can be overwhelming at times, and I’ve come to understand that if I relax some of that binge-writing behavior, I can sustain a writing practice for longer – or, more realistically, I can keep the distraction program at bay. It will still appear and it will still run, but knowing that a thing has an ending makes it easier to endure.
Like all that advice when you have a bad break-up that boils down to “this too shall pass,” while feeling like nonsense in the moment, is 100% true (if you let it, that is).
So, I saw the end of the thing, I made some good use of the distracting functions within the larger program itself, and now I’m heading back to the writing program – literally and figuratively.
This post also appears on my Patreon where you can read my flash story, “Quiet,” at the paid tier. Starting in 2024, I’ll be posting new fiction for the paid tiers each month, so look forward to that announcement in December 2023. Thanks!