November 2002 Anticrastination Tip Sheet
What's the opposite of Procrastination?
THE ANTICRASTINATION TIP SHEET
A monthly Idea and Tip Sheet to
Help You Avoid the Procrastination Habit
From Rita Emmett
Author of THE PROCRASTINATOR'S HANDBOOK
Quote for November:
To speak gratitude is courteous & pleasant,
to enact gratitude is generous & noble,
to live gratitude is to touch heaven.
Joahannes A. Gaertner
To those of you who celebrate it, HAPPY THANKSGIVING
And a bonus quote from a new Nobel Peace Prize Winner:
GOD ALWAYS ANSWERS PRAYERS. SOMETIMES IT'S "YES".
SOMETIMES THE ANSWER IS "NO". SOMETIMES IT'S "YOU
GOTTA' BE KIDDING".
--- Former President Jimmy Carter
ATTENTION WHINERS (no, I did NOT misspell winners)
Starting this month, when anybody subscribes to this
newsletter, they receive a free Special E-Report on "SURE
FIRE WAYS TO ELIMINATE PAPER CLUTTER" that includes
"11 TIPS TO CONQUER PAPER CLUTTER"
Now I fear that many of you who are ALREADY
subscribed might start whining that you too deserve, yea
verily, you too have a RIGHT to that Special E-Report. So
in an effort to keep you happy, here's the deal.
Just click on reply and simply write, "Dearest
Darling Rita, I love you and your Tip Sheet and would
cherish a copy of that Special E-Report that will help me rid my life of paper clutter.'"
OR you can write "send report". Whatever.
"How Does It Feel When That Brand New Book Arrives?"
So many of you were SO cool to write and ask me about the release of my second book, THE PROCRASTINATING CHILD: A HANDBOOK FOR ADULTS TO HELP CHILDREN STOP PUTTING
The most common question was: "How did it feel to see
your brand new book after all that work?"
Several people asked if it was comparable to seeing
your newborn baby for the first time. Well, it's not quite
that tidal wave of emotion, but it does feel like a number
of smaller but beautiful waves of feelings because the book
kind of arrives in chunks.
First you see the words and how they are formatted in
a "galley" which has rough drafts of the inside
illustrations, lots of typographic errors that still need to
be corrected and a fake cover. Then you see a mock up of
the cover but it's in black and white.
Now, I don't know how it works for other authors, but
with me, a magazine writer who interviewed me said that he
had just seen the final cover of my book at Amazon.com. I
went there and sure enough, he was right. I loved it
Next, I received in the mail a copy of the real honest-to-gosh book. It was a thrill, but it arrived as I was
walking out the door to present a seminar, so I opened it as
I drove, and kept sneaking peeks at it as I presented.
The next highlight would have been seeing it on display
in a store, which has sort of happened. While doing a
program in Collinsville, Illinois last week, a local
bookstore set up a display at the conference to sell my
books, and there were seven copies of my brand new book. I
was thrilled and then even MORE thrilled when they told me
it sold out in five minutes.
For those of you who love to hear numbers, the first
printing of THE PROCRASTINATING CHILD was 8,000 copies
and after the book was in the stores for ten days, the
publisher (Walker & Co., NY) is doing a second printing. My
first book, THE PROCRASTINATOR'S HANDBOOK just had
10,000 copies run off for its 16th printing.
Walker and Co. has a wonderful publicist named Linda
Johns Gibson who has already landed a review of the book in
TIME magazine in September, an interview with Family Circle
magazine that will run in February, and tons of radio and
newspaper interviews. Just 5 days ago, she called to tell me
there will be another feature in TIME magazine; this will be
an interview PLUS they will send a photographer for a photo
shoot. THAT sounded pretty exciting. I've heard of photo
shoots in exotic places like Hawaii and Cancun, and thought
"Well, Chicago has some exotic places like the top of the
Sears Tower and Buckingham Fountain. Who knows?"
Next day, Matt the Photographer called with a short,
quick message: "We want you looking at a big clock at a
train station, with you in focus and the people behind you
out of focus."
I told him, "We have a train station right here in Des
Plaines that has a big clock."
Matt said, Perfect. See you tomorrow."
Later that day, the phone rang. It was the photographer
Matt: Not Des Plaines, Union Station downtown Chicago.
OK with you?
Me: Sounds like fun. Almost exotic.
Matt: Rrrrright ... OK ... see you tomorrow.
Matt: Do you mind if you're holding the clock instead of
looking at it?
Me: No problem.
Matt: It's big
Me: How big.
Matt: Not too big.
Me: I can do it.
Matt: See you tomorrow
Matt: Not a train station. A playground. You know - like for
Me: Sounds good. That'll be fun.
Matt: Um, do you mind if you're on a merry-go-round? The
kind that's a flat circle and spins around?
Me: I can do that.
Matt: I'll be on it too, so you'll be in focus but the
background will be out of focus. OK?
Me: I can do that.
Matt: We don't have much time to track one down.
Me: We have some playgrounds in our town with merry-go-rounds.
Matt: Hmmmmm, I'll have to scout them out, but I don't' have
that much time tomorrow.
Me: My husband bought a digital camera that he is desperate
to justify buying. He can take the location shots and email
them to you.
Matt: Great. See you tomorrow.
Matt: Thank Bruce for the scouting and the photos. The
merry-go-round in the first playground is perfect. Ummm, is
it OK with you if my assistant Jim spins it around while I
shoot your photos? That will give us a great out-of-focus
Me: I can do that.
Matt: Can you be holding a clock?
Me: I can do that.
Matt: It's big.
Me: How big?
Matt: Not too big.
Me: Matt, are we talking a 6-foot grandfather's clock?
Matt: No, its not really, really big.
Me: OK, I can do it.
Matt: Great. See you tomorrow. Oh, um, about the spinning,
it won't be round and round, it will be back and forth.
Me: When I was a kid, there was this ride we called "The
Vomit Comet" ....
Matt: Well, if you get sick, we'll do something else.
Me: OK, we can do it. See you tomorrow.
Matt: Would be nice if we had kids in the background.
Me: I can get kids.
Matt: Like running around?
Me: They can run.
Matt: Dressed in bright colors?
Me: They can do that.
Matt: Great. See you tomorrow
Now I don't have a copy of the photo that will be used
out of the 120 Matt took, but Bruce in his desperation to
justify buying his digital camera took many, many pictures
of Matt photographing me. We have a copy of one at my web
site; if you want to see it, copy and paste this
and you will see a photo of Matt the Photographer, Jim the
Spinner, and me --- balanced with my feet precariously
wedged on wet metal because it's raining ... holding a clock
that is not too big.
The shoot lasted an hour and a half, the children
lasted 45 seconds. On the right (in this picture but not
included in Matt's photo) is daughter-in-law Michelle
watching her two sons, Connor, age 6, and Noah, 4. She drew
a large circle on the ground and while Matt set up in
between shots, the boys ran around in circles just like Matt
wanted; the instant he started taking pictures, the boys
disappeared up the slide ladder out of sight.
About 6 feet off to the left, (also not included in the
picture) is our son Robb, who is the designated
toddler-wrangler for almost-two-year old Brynn. Every once
in a while Matt would call out "Any chance that sweet,
adorable little girl will toddle through the background?"
Robb, the cop, would shout back, "Not a chance. She's not
being sweet, she's not being adorable, she won't leave the
At one point, Matt said, "I'm desperate for a child.
Please bring on the toddler."
And Robb, who enforces the law, orders around drug
dealers and gang members, and is feared by speeding drivers
who he pulls over, responded, "I can't get her to; she just
wants to swing in the rain."
So, someday, when I see the final photo in TIME
magazine, perhaps it will be from one of the rare moments in
which one or more of my glorious, gorgeous grandchildren are
running in the background, or perhaps not. But I will always
cherish it as a happy reminder of my one brief, shining
moment in a photo shoot at a semi-exotic playground in the
Hope this satisfies the curiosity of all you who were
so kind to ask questions about the glamorous life of an
author. I'm living my dream come true.
NEWS FLASH: As we are on the brink of mailing this,
Linda called. The TIME interview has been canceled.
An Offer From Pete
My buddy Pete Walkey has an offer that I thought you
might find interesting.
Want a free e-book that shows you how to improve your
marriage by improving your finances in only 30 days? Go to
www.saveitforward.com and sign up for the free newsletter.
You will be sent a copy of his e-book: Save It Forward:
Eliminate Money Stress Now!
Next month: In December, we'll explore a strategy that works
when you feel soooooo overwhelmed.