Thursday, 30 November 2017

Inspiring Distractions


The end has come.

Today marks the beginning of the end.

Don’t get side tracked now guys! Smash out those words! *recalls guiltily the amount of times that I have been distracted during NaNo* Hmmm… Well, maybe being distracted isn’t too bad…

Congrats for making it through NaNovember alive! At least… I hope you all survived it. Even if you characters didn’t.

As you may have gathered, often NaNo comes with a loooot of lovely little distractions. I mean, who doesn’t love to procrastinate? And what better time to do so than when you have a time limit? And, I mean, sometimes you can procrastinate on task! At least, that’s what I keep telling myself.

So, for your amusement as an end of NaNo reward I figured I’d give you a list of great distractions that are on task—complete with examples!

1. The Insane Story Researching
Yup. This is often a form of procrastination. But… isn’t it just so much fun to look into something with so much depth that you have the knowledge on the topic as a surgeon? Or as a victim to knifing? Or as a murderer? Isn’t just so cool to know all of these things to such an extent that you can fully relate? And describe it to perfection?

My main case of this during the month was in my research on running about with a guitar, burns and forest fires. A quick glance through my search history makes me look like I am a musical pyromaniac. (Although… I think that may not be too inaccurate… )

I am willing to take a guess that I spent about 4 hours researching different degrees of burns in a day, and my brother also happened to be a research tool. Please note: the burn on his hand and arm were NOT caused by me, I merely figured I would question him on what the type of pain felt like and examine all of the pictures of it with what was apparently a morbid fascination.

I learnt from this that the pain of second degree burns—I hope you have that notebook of random story research facts out all of you NaNo procrastinators who are reading this instead of frantically writing words—is late in coming. The instant effect is shock and a feeling of near separation of your mind to your body. After a few minutes a stinging and tearing pain (Also known as a burning pain) comes in. It causeses your muscles to seize up and rates high on the pain scale (on someone with high pain tolerance about a 7-8.) Appearance-wise, it is little more than red skin. Red angry skin. Depending on the area and the severity, it could release a pus, or bleed.

The heat also does not tend to vanish straight away as some people believe, but can last for days. The particular case that involved my brother was a burn caused by oil which meant it clung to his skin in a way that I would imagine magical flames would.

After a few weeks, a second degree burn will go down to a less noticeable pink scarring that mostly would be permanent. Burns can do damage to tissue and any weak tissues or thin muscles could be destroyed completely.

But yes, that is some of what I learnt and spent time procrastinating on.

2. Pretty Collages
Okay guys. This is the main one I have a tendency to get caught up on. I mean, it’s on topic, just not on task, and, and, and, it’s fun! To quote Jane Maree when I mentioned that I was distracted but on taks by collages, she described this as an example of the exchange I am sure most of us go through…

Person: What are you doing?
Writer: I’m writing.
Person: With pictures?
Writer: Uhmm…Yeah?

I completely cracked up when that was how it was described, ‘writing with pictures’ But it really is like that. You get to form more about your characters through a pretty collage, and they are useful just to have around when you need a certain mood.

And they look pretty.

That’s always a bonus.

So, I figured I would give you guys a chance to look at some of the fun collages I did during this NaNo!

This is one for the whole story kinda thing:

This is one specifically for Jade DeArchet:

This one is Caeden Casté:

And the last one is my favorite—Courage:

So yeah, I enjoyed doing all of the pretty collages. And getting very distracted while doing them. But it was a good kinda distracted. And I did look back on all of those during my writing to get ideas and to get into the mood. (Shhh, I know that you’re meant to get these things prepared before you do NaNo, to do it in the planning time, but oh well! xP)

3. After the End Stories
Don’t bother denying this. We have all at least thought of some sweet scenes that just make us all happy in the inside while we are being horrible to our characters. I may or may not have written these ideas done.

In the form of stories.

I have hunted through my pile of little snippets of what happens after it is all over to see if tere are any with no spoilers in case any of you guys do happen to read this one day. *Mind explodes at the thought of perhaps publishing it* Anyways. All of the scary thoughts aside, here is a spoiler-free (in other words, I have changed a few names, but you may still be able to take a guess) snippet:


I breathe it in as the wind buffets my face gently. The world is full of it. My eyelids slide lazily open and I gaze out over the plains. The blackened ground is almost fully covered in the green gasses that come so lushly after a fire. A smile spreads across my face and I turn back to the small cottages. Never before had the gardens in Miritain grown as they do now. 

Vines clamber over the house and flowers the size of my hand laugh with me. My feet carry me down to the door of the first, smaller, cottage. Home. Anna and Travis’s voices are quiet in the next house as I turn the handle, stepping into the simple two room cottage. 

We made it, and we are alive.

4. Music Playlists
My other pet love in procrastination has to be making these fun little playlists. I mean, it’s like a collage, but with music! And you can listen to them while writing! What more could anyone want? I’m going to keep my list pretty small, just the one I listened to while writing in general… Not the ones for each characters… Or for different scenes. Or just about any of the other ones.

Random Lute Music
Scarlet (Brooke Fraser)
Broken (Steven Curtis Chapman)
Wishing Well (Oh Hellos)
Burn Like a Star (Rend Collective)
Skyrim Theme (Peter Hollens)
Wilderness (Taylor Davis)
Awakening (Taylor Davis)
Starfire (Taylor Davis)
Hidden Falls (Taylor Davis)
Highland Spirit (Taylor Davis)
Tales of the Wind (Taylor Davis)
Gateway (Taylor Davis)
Morning Star (Taylor Davis)
Bishop of Burrill (Colin Buchanan)
House #163 (Colin Buchanan)

So, there’s a reasonably short playlist. And if you didn’t recognise any of those titles, YOU SHOULD GO AND WATCH THEM!!!

5. Talking to Friends
Yes. I have a life during NaNo.

I often talk to friends when I am ‘writing’ and often it’s about my annoying characters, or cool scenes, or sharing story research. But it really can be good to actually have a social life—even when you are writing madly. You need to have friends, and you need people who can keep you sane and writing for God.

So, there are all of my confessions, so, I suppose after all of this you probably still want Inspiration. Well, do not fear, it is just here!

Well, there you go! What are your favorite ways of procrastinating?


  1. Oooh, Awesome post, Jess!:) I love to make collages they help me get the scene straight in my head (the only thing is it is often hard to find pictures that look exactly like how you want your characters to look in the collage). And I love yours!

    1. Thanks Quinley!
      Yes! Collages are awesome. I make them heaps, as you may have gathered...
      It can be frustrated when the images aren't like you imagine. I wish I was artsy enough to draw them.
      Thanks for commenting!

  2. Ahhh XD I started giggling out loud when I read that playlist though. Peter Hollens and Taylor Davis, I wonder who you've been around recently. xP (Seriously though, it seems that every time I go to your place I discover a cool new songwriter/singer/music-related-person)

    That 'Be Strong' collage is probably my absolute favourite collage of yours ever. It's so cool!!

    1. Heheh, yeah well, maybe I hang around you a lot... (I almost had Hobbit Drinking Medley in there as well as you were always mentioning when you were listening to it!) And you should come more, get more musicians. *nods*
      Eeep, so glad you like it! It's my favourite too!

  3. Oooh, I loved the collages! Your story is sounding so cool. :-D I love Peter Hollens and Taylor Davis' music. <3 Great inspiration!

    1. Eep! Thanks so much MEM! I am still enjoying working on it and sorting out plot holes and all that stuff.
      Ahhhhh, I love them both do much! Epic music!
      Thanks again MEM!