Useful Procrastination

This weekend, my church's choir appropriately sang Rutter's Requiem on Dia De Los Muertos, along with a winds accompaniment, which makes me wish I still played the clarinet.  No one ever told me that my clarinet could be so much cooler than a marching version of Louie Louie would allow.  Afterwards, having spent thirty minutes before the service trying to secure a parking space downtown, (always frustrating), it seemed wasteful to just go home, so Lennon and I walked towards the capital to see the Texas Book Festival.  It was warm and the tents were crowded, so I didn't stop to explore books or talk to authors like I would have liked, but it was a beautiful day and I was eager to go home and find a sunny spot to nap.

Sunday also marked the kick off of NaNoWrMo.  Being the world's worst procrastinator, I didn't open a word document until 11:33PM, after which I only wrote 600 words, a bit short of the 50,000 goal.

So, in case anyone out there has similar procrastinating problems, I thought I would point out a few of the ways in which procrastinating can be productive.  Thus, I offer up the following list of useful procrastination tasks, and yes, reading the list counts as one:

1) Start a blog.  Seriously... picking your favorite template, finding pictures for your banner, all set up a perfect blank canvas on which to project your ideas.  And if you already have a blog, then go post in it.  Writing a few paragraphs for a blog is much easier than trying to think up a thrilling novel plot, with instant publishing gratification.

2) Clean.  I can't work with the apartment in a certain degree of messy.  And while I may not categorize the memorable moments of my life as the ones I spent vacuuming and cloroxing when I'm on my death bed, those moments certainly make all of the others more pleasant.  So do vanilla scented candles.

3) Build your perfect modern author outfit on Polyvore - then post it to your blog!  If you're procrastinating writing, you could also build outfits for the characters you create - then post it on your (new) blog!  Visual stimulation helps spark my muse. 

4) I've always wanted to take a few lessons in vocal harmonies.  Now seems like a good idea to go research if classes like that are offered around Austin, and then consider signing up for one.  Or maybe there's a massage therapy class, or ceramics.  Can't hurt to check...

5) Write a poem in the voice of one of your characters.  Preferably a spoken word piece.  And then come read it at the Independent on Wednesday.

6) Go about making plans the old fashioned way.  Get some index cards, brightly colored pens, tell the dog not to step on you, lay on the floor, and jot notes on the cards.  Then rearrange them to make different stories until you find one you like.  Feel free to doodle on the cards.

7) Cook!  Urged on my procrastination, I made dinner for the first time in two weeks tonight.  So, for your culinary pleasure, here is my procrastinator-perfect Broccoli Rice Cheese Casserole:


3 cups cooked rice (I like to mix white and brown)

1 stick of butter

1 yellow onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 broccoli crowns, chopped and steamed

1 can fat free cream of mushroom soup + 1 cup fat free sour cream OR 2 cans cream of mushroom soup

1 bag of shredded cheddar cheese

salt & pepper to taste


1. Cook rice with 1 part rice to 1.5 parts water for fifteen minutes, covered while oven preheats at 350
2. Chop onion and mix with garlic, sauté in butter
3. Steam broccoli

4. Mix rice with soup and sour cream in a large bowl
5. Add onions, garlic, broccoli, and most of the cheese
6. Spread into a large casserole dish, top with cheese and bake at 350, covered in foil
7. Take off foil, and keep baking for ten more minutes.  Then, yum!

Now that I'm fed, have tidied up, and watched several reruns of House on DVD, I should pull out my index cards and get back to my non-existent novel.