Creative Avoidance

Creative Avoidance

Creative Avoidance is part of the author's life

My general approach to life is to keep busy. It's my way of staving off boredom and countering my DNA-deep slacker nature. On the continuum between “do it now” and “do it when you have to,” I'm in the “do it now” side. But not always. Despite my determination to do a particular thing (such as writing), my wayward brain insists on coming up with a dozen creative ways to avoid doing the desired thing. For me, creative avoidance comes in many forms.

Creative Projects

Sewing masks is productive creative avoidance

I call it creative avoidance because the shiny alternative things usually involve arts and crafts. For example, if I create a nice set of graphics for one of my books, that's productive, right? Sewing face masks for me and the resident mad scientist would be much better than buying them. Or, I could paint the bathroom walls with an abstract ocean…

You get the drift. I suspect this has to do with my day job. Managers and auditors are not amused by creative embellishments in serious reports, and I have to agree. The world has enough misinformation as it is. However, as a side note, I have successfully motivated other departments who are dragging their feet in providing content by telling them I'd be happy to start their section of a plan with “Suddenly, pirate ships loomed on the horizon!”

UFOs, Also Known as Unfinished Objects

One of my lessons learned during a pandemic has to do with the need for a schedule. I eat at odd hours, confuse the cats, and am only guessing about what day it is. A side effect of this means I'm slower at getting things done because I have no routine. Also, no deadline.

Here is the pitfall of having so many creative alternatives: UFOs, a.k.a. unfinished objects. My play room (a.k.a. the spare bedroom) has a storage bin or two of such items. A half-finished lined bag made of pieced upholstery samples. Earrings that I can assemble just as soon as I find a clear, well-lit, cat-proof work surface. A landscaping project that is now full of weeds (though to be fair, the very late roofing job and early snows didn't help).

What I should really do is schedule a couple of hours a week to prioritize the UFOs and get them done. But maybe I could update the draft floorplan for remodeling the basement, or take a tutorial on how to use my digital painting software with my fancy graphics tablet, or…

I'll let you know when I've made it to the other side of the creative avoidance black hole. 🤣

Avoiding things that must be done with other things that could be done