Friday, July 2, 2010

What Do You Give Up To Write?

In a scene from my upcoming release, Operation Prince Charming, the reluctant hero is dragged to the opera by his (soon-to-be-ex) girlfriend.

The night I wrote it, my seat to Nashville Opera’s performance of Tosca sat empty. Deadline was only days away, and I still had over 130 pages to write.

I ended up making do with a little Kathleen Battle on my iPod. Not as good as the live performance experience, but okay.

Having a contract to fulfill is a wonderful thing in this tight market, and I don’t mind giving up an event for the privilege.

Actually, a night out isn’t the only thing I’ve given up for more time at the keyboard. Below are a few others:

I limit phone time. Sigh. I’m gabby, and most of my friends like to yap, yap, yap too. One conversation leads to another, and the next thing you know you’ve spent the entire evening on the phone (talking about nothing).

Television was another time-eater. Tune in to one show, then get caught up in the one after it and so on… Next thing, you know you’re sleepy and wondering where the time went.

Nowadays I wait until the current season of my favorite show has ended, then order it on Netflix or iTunes. I spend a single day watching the episodes back to back. (Just finished a 1-day marathon of Weeds, Season 5)

What have you given up to eek out more writing time?


Farrah Rochon said...

Oh, Phyllis, I feel your pain.

Overall, I've given up watching some TV and reading as much as I used to. When it comes to deadlines, I give up everything. Depending on how pressed I am for time, there's no phone, TV, Internet, sleep. Whatever it takes to get the book in on time. :)

Kwana said...

It's the internet for me. A total time suck. And TV too. UGH.

Jewel Amethyst said...

The question is "What haven't I given up?". I'm down to 2 tv shows per week and that's during the season. Now with the summer shows and reruns, I don't know the last day I've watched TV.

As for books, I'm taking a much longer time to complete one.

Liane Spicer said...

TV was never a problem for me; I too tend to watch my favourite shows in marathons, like I did with Desperate Housewives last year.

I miss reading nonstop the way I used to, even though my deadlines these days are self-imposed. If I'm under contract, however, a lot more than reading has to go: the long telephone and Skype chats with friends, Internet window shopping, blog browsing, not to mention cleaning, cooking, sleeping and getting dressed. Deadlines rule!

Charles Gramlich said...

Fortunately I neither like to talk on the phone or watch TV, but I do like playing video games.

Don said...

There is nothing more time-consuming to a writer than television, telephones and the internet. I really have to believe these are major avoidances.

Music tends to inspire though.

A seasoned and experienced writer such as yourself should have no problem clamping down and meeting your deadline wayy ahead of schedule.

Anonymous said...

It is too bad you missed Nashville Opera's Tosca. The performance was incredible. The singing, the acting, the sets ... it was an amazing night in the theater.

Shauna Roberts said...

I rarely participate in any of my hobbies anymore, including reading. The few TV shows I do watch, I watch while writing the grocery list or paying bills or sorting laundry. I put off chores. I neglect my friends. I rarely visit my family.

I make time to eat, exercise, and sleep, but otherwise my life revolves around writing.