Stephanie Burgis (stephanieburgis) wrote,
Stephanie Burgis

Pride, its opposite, and some really good bribes

Ah, pride, how often it goes before a fall...sigh. Today I decided to take MrD into town and make it really feel like a treat for both of us. For me, part of that meant dressing up a little. See, I spend a lot of days wearing PJs until late in the day, which means I usually feel pretty scruffy. Today, though, I not only dressed in non-scruffy clothes, I put on the string of pearls I inherited from a much-loved relative, and I put on lipstick. I felt really, really attractive and classy.

I kept on feeling classy as I went into the library and stood for five minutes chatting with a librarian at the front counter while various other adults passed and said hello. I felt really, really classy all the way to the children's section where MrD was waiting with a pile of books... which point I finally, finally looked down and realized that at some point before leaving my house, I must have spilled great big dollops of something white and mucky (mayonnaise, maybe, from lunch??? who knows?) all over the front of my shirt.


So classy.


Luckily, I had baby wipes on hand. I wiped off the stains, leaving only dark wet patches behind. Still not entirely classy, maybe, but better than weird white muck.

And hey. At least I won't get above myself about my appearance anytime soon...

Oh well. It was a really good trip to town anyway. MrD and I read book after book together, and I picked up a whole bunch of books for myself that I've been wanting to read for ages, like Tom Angleberger's The Strange Case of Origami Yoda and Jill Shalvis's adult romance duology Christmas in Lucky Harbor. After the library, we went to Caffé Nero and shared a piece of white-and-dark-chocolate cheesecake that was SO delicious, MrD and I were both in bliss.

I also stocked up on something really important: chocolate for the weeks and months ahead.

See, I got really, really good news this weekend: I won the double-batch of freelance writing projects I'd auditioned for back in January! This is FABULOUS news. However, the beginning of this week was a little rocky as I went into full-on pressure mode, based partially on the external (and tight) deadlines for the freelance work, but just as much on the equally tight deadlines I've created for myself for my own WIP.

This is it, I told myself. From now through September, I have to WORK. Work, work, work! Things Are Serious Now! I need a certain wordcount every day, and there will be no excuses tolerated EVER! I was very stern with myself in this lecture. Really quite scary.

And so yesterday I had a mini-meltdown. Because guess what? My creativity really hates being lectured. Just like a little kid being told that THERE WILL BE NO MORE TREATS EVER, it went into a screaming fit and refused to do ANYTHING.

On the other hand...well, it hates being lectured, but it has no problem with bribes. So, on the very wise advice of a good writer-friend, I went into town today determined to stock up on bribes. I got two bars of Divine dark chocolate with fruit and nuts and one bar of Divine mint dark chocolate. If used judiciously, they should last me through both stages of the first freelance project and give me a little hit of chocolate every day. And I'm thinking that a set of Hunger Games movie tickets might just be in order sometime, too, for a week when I not only meet but exceed my wordcount goals...

No, it does not make me feel terribly mature to admit that this is how I work. But guess what? This morning I had a genuinely fabulous writing session on the freelance project, writing 2100 words that made me happy - because I knew that I'd be going into town this afternoon. Other days, I'll have the chocolate at hand for motivation.

Sometimes, bribes are exactly what I need. And if that means eating a few bars of really delicious dark chocolate every working day...well, hey. I'm happy to be a martyr to the deadline cause. ;p

What about you guys? What would/do you use as a small, affordable bribe for yourself?
Tags: libraries, reading, writing process
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