I promised myself that while Nathan was at school today, I would do nothing but work on the Safe Haven script, which really, truly must get done ASAP. So what have I done in the last hour and a half? I had breakfast, which I suppose was necessary – at least the coffee was necessary. I took stock of the Christmas presents I’ve bought so far and what still needs to be done – not necessary, at least not today. And now I’m here, writing a rambling blog about procrastination. Definitely not necessary.

I’m not very good about writing endings. Actually, I do okay with the absolute end, the very final moment. The problem is the point when I’ve finished laying out all the plot threads, and it’s time to start tying them all together so that the script will come to that final moment. It’s the point when I realize, suddenly, that the script as it is on paper doesn’t match the shining vision I had in my head when I started. Suddenly there’s all this pressure – this is supposed to be meaningful! Make it count! And I freeze up and can’t make myself write at all.

So I count Christmas presents, and I sit around wondering whether Nathan will be disappointed that I bought him three books and only one video game (ah, the tribulations of having a writer for a mother).

The issue of the script on paper not matching the vision in my head is even harder to reconcile when writing drama. I used to write prose, and then it was fairly straightforward – if the words don’t say what you mean, you have work to do. When you’re writing drama, even the perfect words won’t completely match your vision when they’re just lying there on the paper. Drama, by definition, requires another element  to fulfill the vision. It won’t seem right until the actors step in and bring the words to life. So then I sit here wondering – does this seem flat because it’s flat, or because it’s waiting for actors to breathe the breath of life into it? And I realize I’ve spent twenty minutes trying to hear actors saying the words and I haven’t written a thing.

The auditions are set for December 20, and before that I have to finish the script, edit the script and get the script printed. Not to mention developing the rehearsal schedule, which is a whole other issue. Though I guess it’s okay if it’s not in final form until our first read through on January 3.

No – must not think that way. Must not encourage procrastination. 

It’s only 10 – 15 pages left. I should be able to get it done in a couple of days, if I just do it. “Come on Melissa! You can do it! I have confidence in you! Woo hoo!”

But I need to refill my coffee, first.

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