Facebook, and How I Avoided Writing Today…

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Writing used to be simpler. No Email, no cellphones, no Facebook! And, although these tools let us communicate, educate and promote, at will, they have also created an entirely new ‘time suck’ in our already busy lives.

Time Suck – Definition: A person, thing or occurrence meant to distract from projects in-progress.

We all know a person who falls into this category. They want to tell you all about the thing their cute little snot of a dog, their chihuahua, did after he poopied outside that morning—TIME SUCK!

As well, we can recognize the occurrence we seem never to avoid prior to really getting to work, our computers, our catching up with folks who have located us somehow, someway (probably WhitePages.com) and, zap, an email appears from God-knows-who from high school who wants to reacquaint themselves and “stay in touch” because they missed you, all of the sudden—TIME SUCK!

And, then, there exists a most complete thing which exacerbates the problem AND the definition of time-sucking into unquantifiable levels.

Wait. I want to give this one its due emphasis so bear with me for a moment.

“And, God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was without form and void, and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said “Let there be Facebook (I know. Terrible. Right?).” And there was Facebook. And God saw Facebook, and it was good.”

And, He’s right. It is good when you have absolutely nothing else to do whatsoever but play with people who also have absolutely nothing else to do whatsoever but play with people who also…

And, on and on. It’s like two freakin’ mirrors facing each other, bouncing the same pathetic image exponentially, over and over, and for infinity. The very nature of redundancy. It’s not the mirrors’ faults, no. The problem is that you’re there watching the mirrors.

Don’t get me wrong. I love Facebook. I’m there every morning, afternoon and evening, checking in, faithfully.

But, dear God. Why have thou forsaken me!? I mean, why, why, why? I have work to do, a novel to complete—two novels to complete—sitting patiently in my Word document files.

I long for the days of typewriters, of Spain with Capote and lots of scotch. Num. But, more importantly those languid days without the National Anthem trumpeting out from our cell phones, or the ^ping^ of an email coming into Outlook, or another tiny red number indicating how many comments, messages, or friends you have on Facebook.

It’s exhausting to keep up with. And, yet, this is the way we must survive as writers if we wish to fit into the uber-techno cog of today’s world and not slip into its flotsam.

But, as writers, we must write, no? Yes. So…

We blog.

I blog therefore I am.

Catchy.

I blog therefore I am writing. Better.

I write therefore I am a writer. AHA!

The only way we can sell our work is if we HAVE work. We must produce. We must write. So, don’t stop using Facebook entirely. No, you crazy nut. Get on for moments at a time, say, a half-hour in the morning. Then close down your internet browser and start writing. Write for three hours straight. Take lunch. Check Facebook again. Close browser. Get back to your writing. Rinse and repeat.

Writers need a routine, a schedule, just like people who leave their homes everyday to go to work. If you must stay connected through Facebook (or, God forbid, Twitter), stay connected but not at the umbilical cord… for crying out loud. Do so in spurts. And, write at length, avoiding at all costs the urge to get your FB fix.

Now! Now! Everything is ‘right now’ in life these days. It’s like that hideous JG Wentworth commercial with people screaming out of windows, doors and cars, “It’s my money and I need it now!” Okay. Money? Yes. Facebook? Huh-uh. Not really.

Come on, folks. We need stories out there. Good stories.

Please write. And, when you do? Drop me a note on my Facebook page and tell me all about it!

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