Produce or Procrastinate?

I had what I think was a productive week, now my cough has settled down and I have more energy.

I edited the latest novel draft and sent off to a beta reader.

I edited a previous novella draft and gave to a beta reader who had been patiently hanging out for the second story in the Sensing Danger series.

I took to the hedge around my vegetable garden with a chainsaw, because I got tired of trimming the edge when it grow over the paths around the vegetable gardens, and it was so tall it was blocking sunlight on the northern bed. The trunks of each bush are now around 2 feet tall.

I poisoned the weeds now accessible under the hedge. Hopefully they will all die back in a week’s time and I can add compost to the soil and plant something there.

I used secateurs to cut small branches off each large branch until I got blisters on my hands by the time I finished a third of the pile, so stopped. I wheeled out my mulcher and fed all the cut small branches into to mulcher.

I have to admit I was exhausted after all that.

The next day I worked on cutting off the small branches with leaves from the next third of the pile. This time I used the chainsaw instead of the secateurs. Easier on the hands.

One neighbour came over to watch me use the little petrol chainsaw until I finished. Talked for a while about him cutting timber when he was young, then he went back home. I went back to pushing small branches into the mulcher again.

Next door neighbour asked could she come over and help feed the branches into the mulcher when she got back from an appointment. I said “Sure.”

Another neighbour came across the street while I was feeding branches into the mulcher. I turned it off so I could hear her, expecting a complaint about noise.

She wanted to know what the machine was, and where I bought it. I told her that close behind shopping at OfficeWorks for stationary, Bunning’s is my favourite store. Got talking about other things, including my writing and publishing. Three of my girls (Sussex Light hens) walked over and had a good scratch in the pile of mulched leaves.

Then the next door neighbour arrived, tried to climb over my fence, but I told her she was too old and would probably break a hip and to walk around the corner to the gate. She did, thankfully. I could just see an 86 year old sprawled on the ground in the pile of mulch and me having to phone for an ambulance.

Anyway, she fed each small branch into the mulcher until her hands got sore. I shoved the last few branches through and turned off the machine, and thanked her for her help.

She said I lead an exciting life and she enjoyed helping. Go figure. I think I am the most boring person around. I prefer to remain inside writing or reading or publishing novels, not socialising or shopping or walking on a beach or whatever.

Two more neighbours down the street waves as they drove past. I saw more people while working in my back yard than I normally do all week. It must be something to do with Spring arriving.

I then spent some time catching up on all the blogs I follow relating to writing, publishing, marketing and digital art.

Interesting links

Procrastination is not so bad (could relate to writing)

I thought this article was timely because I have been catching up on tasks around the house and yard instead of writing, but, I am plotting out my next series in my mind while I work, so I do not feel so bad. Besides, I have to wait for the beta readers to get back to me before I can format the stories, and publish.

Hidden taxes we put up with in Australia (definitely relates to software and hardware & everything else we buy on the internet)

This was for information only, even though everyone in Australia knows it is cheaper to fly to USA, purchase a few things like clothes, iPads, iTunes, other software and hardware and fly back to Australia. It is cheaper than purchasing over the internet, because of the hidden taxes.

The Complete Guide To Building Your Blog Audience

Of course I refuse to use Facebook because I would not accept their TOS when I read it years ago, and I have no interest in using many of the other sites recommended, and I also noticed that no one puts in actual figures and time involved in setting up these processes to build an audience. But I will continue to read through, and sift out the few processes I am willing to do while keeping in mind the WIBBOW test. (Would I be better off writing?)

I found two lessons teaching Photoshop that I will try to follow.

Learn to make a vector portrait from a photo in Photoshop (could use on covers)
I will try this over the weekend and see how it goes.

Sam Nielson’s process on using occlusion Part I


Sam Nielson’s process on using occlusion Part II

Hint: More instructions in the comments for the steps where there was not much detail.

I will try the process in these lessons and see if it improves the covers for my novelette series Galaxy Freight.


So, how productive was your week? Remember, you have to procrastinate for a while while you decide whether you should be writing, or marketing, or doing other urgent tasks, so do not feel guilty for procrastinating.

I would love to hear from you if you do try the Photoshop steps for occlusion, or create a vector portrait from a photo.

Keep writing and having fun.


3 comments so far

  1. E.K. Carmel on

    I’m glad to see you’re feeling better!

    Even though you don’t like to socialize, you apparently don’t have a “keep away” vibe since your neighbors are all happy to chat with you! Of course it does help if you have new garden toys for people to check out. A little bit of neighborhood good-will goes a long way.

    My week has been a bit of back and forth. I worked on my first draft, which is past the half-way mark now. I’m seriously considering posting it on Wattpad. It’s a very interesting concept. I also played around with cover ideas, researching funny paranormal genre covers. Then, I took the weekend off to do fun stuff with friends and family.

    Have a great week!

    • D J Mills on


      I tried altering pictures yesterday for two covers. They turned out OK, but I will keep working on them.
      I am also working through a SciFi Art book exercises for the moment. Today I will try to work on space ships. I might try the same processes in GIMP when I finish each exercise in Photoshop.

      Relaxing with family and friends is always good. It gives our muse many more ideas for our characters. 😉

      Keep going with your draft. Oh, book me in to beta read your draft when you are finished. 🙂

      • E.K. Carmel on

        Covers take a lot of time and work. Definitely uses different creative muscles than the writing. Thanks so much for offering to beta read! I’ll let you know when it’s ready.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: