Archive | October, 2011

One Task at a Time vs. Multi-Tasking

4 Oct

I have read a number of articles that say the multi-tasking that most of us do nowadays, whether we are writers or not, is really counterproductive. We may think we are balancing a number of task at once, but we really aren’t. What we are really doing is hopping quickly from one task to another, which can be tiring and often useless, resulting in tasks having to be redone, or at least revisited.But many people, even the teenagers that I work with everyday, claim that they are able to multi-task successfully. I have to agree.I am happiest when I have several projects going at once, so I can work on the one I am in the mood for at any given time. This applies to my writing projects as well as other things. When I cook, I like to have more than one project going so I can make good use of my time in the kitchen. I unload the dishwasher and get my lunch ready in the morning while I wait for coffee. As a writer, I always have several projects in different stages of completion. Right now, I am working on promotion for my novel The Gate House, which is due to be re-released in a few months. I am also working on revisions of the sequel/prequel, tentatively titled Lydia’s Story. And in addition, I am trying to finish another story in the series which I began several years ago, and would now like to complete. Obviously, one of the three takes a back seat at any given time, depending on what I see as most urgent, or what type of work I am in the mood for — promotion, revisions or first draft writing.Of course we need to be able to see a task through to completion, otherwise there is no point in doing it. But for those of us who work that way, having several balls in the air can be fun. I feel less likely to get bogged down when I can take a break and work on something different.Take a look at your own work habits. Do you like to see one project through before starting another one? Or do you prefer juggling several tasks at once? Does your style work for you?

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