Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Task-Setting For Writers, Part III: Bargains and Compromises

Welcome to part three of task-setting for writers. You can read weeks one and two here.

There are some people out there that totally own the hand-off. My experience shows this happens with managers of some sort who drop the crap tasks on their underlings/interns. But your're not here to discuss my traumatic work history.

You're here because you want to know more about task-setting.

Part Three: Bargain and Compromise
This part should really be called asking for help when you need it.

I must admit, I'm having problems writing this post. While I can write a competent task list and do multi-task somewhat efficiently, I'm not good at this bargain and compromise thing. Since Wonder Woman was my idol as a kid, I like to think I can do everything**.

The key is to acknowledge you need help. It can be something as miniscule as picking up a book of stamps, but if you know someone nearby who goes to the post office every day***, why can't they pick them up for you? If they do that, it will save you some time to do something else like sort laundry.

Of course, I know that some people have issues with asking for help. So let's think of this as striking a bargain. Hubby and I do this a lot and it usually involves the litter box. Let's work with the litter box as an example****.
Alicia: The litter box needs to be cleaned, but I want to finish this scene.
Hubby gives a blank look.
Alicia: Could you clean out the box?
Hubby goes back to playing Call of Duty.
Alicia: If you do, I'll throw in a load of laundry once I finish this scene. *pauses* I know you're down to your last two pair of underwear.
Hubby cleans litter box.

In the above contrived example, I got Hubby to take care of the litter because he really needs socks for the rest of the week. Laundry is less time consuming than dealing with the drama of the box. (The White One loves to sit in the box while you try to fill it with clean litter.)

Your turn: Go take a look at your task list. Once you've checked off everything you've already done*, what can you give to someone else?



* Like becoming one with The Lurkdom and entering the Race to 150 Contest.
** And in my fantasy world, I can. Including slam dunks.
*** You must know my mom.
**** The conversation as follows is NOT how it goes at Chez Gregoire.
______
Last.fm hit of the day: Columba Aspexit by This Ascension

3 comments:

  1. Asking for help is hard but it is something we writers have to learn to do.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have THE hardest time asking for help. I think I'm Wonder Woman too. :)

    Great post.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love these posts. I try to compromise with myself all the time. Like I can't read a certain book until I finished outlining. It hasn't really been working so far...but I'll give it another crack. :)

    ReplyDelete

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