Monday, Jan 05, 2009

Writing Leeches

Dear Power Writer, 

A leech is a blood-sucker. Not a very appealing topic. But did you know that there are time leeches? Time leeches are those activities or people that “suck” our time, leaving us feeling frustrated, defeated, and disillusioned. 

Here are some of the worst time leeches around today. Ask yourself if you are allowing any of these leeches to rob you of valuable writing time: 

1) Email

2) Facebook, Twitter, or other social networks

3) Writing loops

4) Phone calls

5) Negative people, including relatives

6) Demanding people, including church people

7) Any other non-productive activity that takes priority over your call to write. 

Remember that a leech cannot rob you without your permission. Whenever you spot a leech, run the other way as fast as you can. Otherwise, at the end of 2009, the leech will have sucked all the time out of your life, and you will be left holding an empty writing bag.




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2 thoughts on “Writing Leeches

  1. One tip I learned is to say, “I have five minutes to talk, but I need to know ________.” By setting a time limit, it can help — as long as you stay within the time limit. Do call to catch up with the friend occasionally, though, so you don’t always seem abrupt. This has helped me.

    January 5, 2009 at 7:57 AM

  2. The thing we have to do is determine if interruptions are leeches or important. Leeches can be obvious, like email, or sneaky, like “important” phone calls. People are more important, of course, but we have to decide if something needs to be handled right away or can be left to later.

    One thing I did when I homeschooled my daughter was to put a message on my answering machine that said “we’re homeschooling right now, but leave a message and we’ll call you on a break.” If it was an emergency, I would pick up the phone. If not, I left it until I was not teaching. The same could be done during our writing time.

    January 5, 2009 at 9:44 AM