My time management skills are terrible. Absolutely terrible. I couldn’t deny it if I wanted to.
I can’t even procrastinate properly. My quick 15 minute naps turn into an hour plus easily, but it isn’t a steady hour. It’s an hour broken up over five to ten minute “snoozes”and resets of the alarm clock.
In the end, I’ve neither accomplished anything nor gotten any real rest. A lose/lose proposition, if you will.
Still, it’s just the way I’m wired. I can’t make myself sit down and write until the time is right. And the time isn’t usually right until about an hour after something was due.
So, with this in mind, Monday’s experiment of spending the day in town, finding places to write inside local businesses or outdoors in the fresh air, was surprisingly successful.
I started my morning with breakfast at Walker’s.
I’ve eaten at Walker’s before, but only for supper. I was prepared, based on those experiences, to have a pleasant breakfast. But even with that experience, I wasn’t prepared for how good the breakfast was. Everything was seasoned perfectly – eggs, gravy, everything. I only added pepper to my breakfast, it didn’t need anything else.
Over the course of the next couple of hours I watched diners come and go, trying to be aware of how many tables were available (I didn’t want to hold up a table they might need for other paying customers while I nursed a cup of coffee) and worked through a couple of stories that I’d already done most of the leg work on. With a cell phone hot spot and a Bluetooth mouse (though I was an early adopter of the tech, I’ve come to loathe track pads over the years), I couldn’t have asked for a better office.
Eventually, though, I had to move on. There was an event in the park I needed to cover and if I parked myself at Walker’s all day – which would be easy to do with a bottomless cup of coffee and that coconut cream pie – I’d have felt like I needed to pay Karl for subletting some office space.
My next writing spot was on the picnic tables at the Depot. After my time in the park, I didn’t want to go back indoors, and this was an ideal spot to enjoy the mild Monday weather while staying productive.
I wrote another story there before the low-battery warning on my laptop sent me in search of another workspace – once more indoors where I could plug in.
Upper Tygart Mini Mart accommodated me for my second indoor food and writing spree. A hot dog with sauce and cheese and one Mt. Dew later, I had another story under my belt. I also had an intriquing and thought provoking conversation that may have distracted me from writing, but was well worth the time spent, and got to visit with several good people.
It was a worthwhile Monday, and I think it may be the beginning of a regular weekly event for me – picking a community in the county and focusing on finding places to write, and people to talk to, while I spend time there.
I’ll probably end up distracted as often as I’m productive. But, really, this was all so much better than being stuck in an office. If you have terrible time management skills anyway, you can do worse to than to “waste” your time in a gorgeous community, with gorgeous people, on a gorgeous day.
Jeremy D. Wells can be reached at email@example.com