100 Ways to Look Like You’re Working

Maybe you have a spouse or roommate who wonders when you’ll hit it big.  Or they wonder why you spend so much time at the keyboard with little compensation or reward.  You keep plugging away, persevering, sometimes for years.  You keep working with a little doubt in the back of your head, wondering the same thing.

But you can’t quit.  Writing is as much a part of you as breathing.  You can’t imagine life without it.  So you journey on, hoping someday your writing will encourage a reader, or inspire them to make a change, or just laugh or cry.

In the next few posts, I will list a total of 100 ways to look like you’re working, when you want to look productive (some of these ways are), but are stuck or want to try something different.  This is for fun, mostly, but some items are either to help you get organized to write more efficiently or to jog your mind in a new direction.    

I hope you enjoy the list!  And by all means, send me your own ideas to add.  I’ll post 20 at a time over 5 posts.

Not in any particular order, here are the first 20:

 1. Hold a pencil to your lips (this projects serious thinking, perhaps about character description or plot settings)

2. Rub your chin while holding a pen or pencil in the other hand

3. Sharpen every pencil within the 500 square foot radius of your desk

4. Scribble on scratch paper with all your pens, checking to see if they work, in case you want to actually write with one

5. Dial your home phone number and pretend you’re doing an in depth interview with a fascinating subject of your choice (this only works if the house is empty)

6. File all papers scattered across your desk or office floor (you might get organized)

7. Make new folders for all the papers you’re going to file

8. Dust off newly cleared desk and other work surfaces

9. Dust off your keyboard

10. Dust off your monitor or laptop screen

11. Update your writing mission statement (or write the original)

12. Stack up your writing books in alphabetical order (you might decide to reread one)

13. Line up your pens and highlighters by colors of the rainbow

14. Toss out the red pens that remind you of old high school English papers that still give you nightmares

15. Write a letter to your Aunt Harriet

16. Write a letter to your Uncle Albert

17. Balance your business checkbook (writing numbers counts, doesn’t it?)

18. Read the newspaper, scouring for articles to jumpstart your writing

19. Write writing prompts

20. Write the resume for a character in a current project

Enjoy your day!


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