5 websites to visit instead of writing

We get it. You should be writing. But you’re here online instead. You’re not sure exactly when it started — perhaps about an hour ago when you caught yourself alphabetising your bookcase, refolding your towels and cleaning out the cutlery drawer. But it’s now official: you have entered The Procrastizone.

Studies have shown that 93% of all writers spend up to 65% of their time in at least 44% of The Procrastizone. But that’s okay – now that you’ve finished feather-dusting the cat and are sitting back here at your computer, we can at least provide you with the illusion of being on task until this procrast-attack blows over. It’s fine, we got this.

What follows are five fun but entirely justifiable websites to take your mind off that deadline, character conundrum or blank page…

Website #1: Stunning Writing Studios
Justify this how?: One of the problems with getting work done is this kitchen/cramped office/cafe/bedroom/cupboard under the stairs. So you thought you’d look into some alternative arrangements. Yes, that’s it. A writing studio would solve all your problems – that’s the reason you can’t seem to write today. A brand shiny new studio with lots of pretty things and distractions will be JUST the thing… Ahem.

Website #2: Cool bookshops around the world
Justify this how?: It’s research. If you’re working on a novel, you really need to do some genuine reconnaissance about WHERE your book is likely to end up. You really need to visualise seeing your book right there alongside all the other top sellers. And you need to do it at least 22 times.

Website #3: Strange and unusual baby names
Justify this how?: Your story needs characters and those characters need names. Or perhaps you need to change an interviewee’s name for your article. Or maybe you were thinking about getting a new pet, new baby or new kitchen appliance and needed a name for it. Whatever the reason, this website gives you dozens of oddly curated name options including up-and-coming, author-inspired, fruit names, geographic place names, Shakespearean, sci-fi, vampires, Pixar, and “names sure to shock Grandma”. Time well spent…

Website #4: Number 1 Aus, UK and US songs on any date
Justify this how?: You like to listen to music while you write. Actually, maybe THAT is why you just can’t seem to hit the groove today. So you thought you’d look up some classics – including what was number 1 on the day you were born, AND every birthday since then until now – in Australia, and UK and the USA. This website even allows you to play a medley for all the hits on that date. Now, don’t TELL me this isn’t important stuff!

Website #5: Picture quizzes
Justify this how?: All those words and the pressure of writing them were really getting to you. What you need are some pictures and some mental stimulation to help you balance things out. Famous places, famous faces, flags, movies, logos… It’s all part of the creative process. Any minute now one of these quizzes will trigger a rush of writing… any… minute… now… just one more…

So there you go. Five pieces of procrasti-proof that there’s an entire rabbit hole of wonder beyond the usual social media suspects – a great guilt-free way to ‘unplug’ from writing for 20 minutes, two hours, or all of a Tuesday, Wednesday and rainy Thursday…


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