The topic of our current blog chain is multitasking, and so it seemed appropriate to do a little multitasking myself, and combine my blog chain post with my WIP Wednesday one.
Okay, so the question for this blog chain was brought to us by Terri.
Do you focus on one project at a time, or do you have many irons in the fire at any given moment?
My ability, or lack thereof, to effectively focus on more than one thing at once is why this post is being posted late Wednesday afternoon, rather than the early AM hours. You see last night when I was supposed to be writing this blog post, I was instead dealing with a toddler who had suddenly decided that rather than going to sleep, he would fuss and cry for several hours.
Now if I were a good little multitasker I would have been able to bounce him on one knee while simultaneously typing out my post, and just to make things interesting, I'd be mentally beginning to sort through my taxes for next year - sure it's only August, but one can never think too far ahead.
The thing is, I'm not a very good multitasker. Even when I believe that I'm effectively multitasking, I'm usually just trying to do five things at once and ending up a spastic mess who walks into a room intending to grab my car keys, but by the time I reach the room have completely forgotten what I came there for in the first place.
And according to an NPR piece that I read several months back - no one is good at multitasking, or more specifically no one actually can multitask - in reality we just flip between different tasks very quickly.
So how does all of this apply to writing? Hmm... well, I don't know. Well, I did know - I was definitely going somewhere with this train of thought - but then I started rereading that NPR article and lost what I was going to say.
And maybe that's my point. Yeah, I'll go with that.
When I switch back and forth between writing too many different things, I lose track of what I was going to write next and I get confused and then my writing gets confused to the point where I might as well be typing in the wingdings font.
The real problem I have with multitasking is that when I have several pots bubbling away, somehow they all end up on the backburner and procrastination becomes way too easy. On the other hand, when I am focused on just one specific project it is easier to set specific goals for that project and keep myself moving forward with it.
Multitasking is why I haven't gotten much done this past week. I am right now querying, revising, brainstorming something new, and trying to work on some shorter writing projects on the side. And at the end of the week when Wednesday rolls around (as it always inevitably does) I feel like I haven't accomplished much on any of these.
So what about you? Are you better at multitasking than I am and do you find it an effective way to work on your writing?
And to follow this chain you can go to Rebecca's post before mine, or tomorrow find Amanda's post when she has the last word on this topic.
If you want to participate in WIP Wednesday, simply post your own WIP Wednesday entry on your blog and leave a link to it in the comments below. Or if you don't have a blog, feel free to report your progress directly into the comments box.
For more detailed information concerning what all this nonsense is about please consult the original Work in Progress Wednesday posting.
Feel free to also make use of the lovely little WIP Wednesday logo as well!