The Internet versus Crushing Attacks of Shame

Here’s the thing about my weekend: it involved an extraordinary number of real-time conversations with people who live in far-flung corners of the world. Between gaming last night and meeting with my writing group on Saturday morning, I actually spent more time having conversations with people via Skype and Google Hangouts than I did having conversations with my flatmate in real life.

The last few months have been kinda bad for these kinds of conversations. One of the curses of online conversations is that they’re far easier to avoid or reschedule, allowing other things to make more immediate claims on your time. The last time we gamed on a Sunday night was back in May, before I ran off to go to cons, Rabbit-Holes, and basically lost three weeks of my life to a throat infection. The last virtual meet-up with my writer-peeps was even earlier. March, we think. Possibly even April.

I really shouldn’t go that long.

One of the neat side-effects of talking to other writers, for example, is that it allows me to pitch somewhat crazy ideas and find other people who are nominally interested in coming along for the ride. I can say, well, I haven’t written anything for a while, so I’m going to try and finish a story every two weeks to get back into the submission habit, and at least one of my writer-peeps will figure that’s a good idea and join me.

And because there’s other people involved, and failure will result in crushing attacks of shame, the odds of me actually writing and submitting eleven and a half stories between now and the end of the year actually increases a fraction.

So it seems I’m writing a story again. Or, rather, circling three or four story ideas, prodding them with a stick, trying to figure out which one has enough life in it to get me through to the August 6th deadline when I’m meant to have the first story done.

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