Are You an Author-to-Be or a Writing Procrastinator?

Dr. Judith Briles
5 min readJul 20, 2021


I’m often asked: how do you write so much; how have you managed to publish so many books; how do you do what you do?

The answer is: it starts with a timeline and a plan to get there. And not procrastinating about what I want to do. Procrastination is the kiss of death for creativity, writing, and publishing a book.

Today is July 20 — it’s a hot, air polluted week in Colorado from the smoke flowing in from multiple states. I’m sitting with multiple projects at my fingertips and noodling two new books of my own. The opening chapter is a single page: 105 words, 20 lines.

A different approach for my own writing. A twist. I’m liking the punch. The reality. It makes me smile.

And I need to stop for a bit — I have three other projects I need to finish before I deep dive into a retreat that will last a week to pull the corners of my mental outline together and start filling in with words woven with visuals and the walk I will take my readers on. The title? It’s firm … the domain is purchased. The reveal isn’t ready for all to see and hear yet. Chapter One is done and because of what its shape is, I now know how each chapter will end with a noodle; a goose; or a call to action.

Last week, I got an email from an author procrastinator. He asked if I had heard of a specific self/indie publishing company.

My response was: When are you going to stop going doing the rabbit hole and just start writing? Get the book done you’ve been talking about for three years now? You have been diddling too long. Your book could have had volumes two and three out yet you still will not do what you say you want and need for your business.

What are you afraid of?

He promised he would get serious. Spend a solid week during this month creating a draft for his nonfiction “business card”.

This author-to-be suffers from a “one for the money; two for the show”… he won’t allow himself to get to the “three to get ready”… much less “GO” to cross this finish line.

As we ended our call, I offered encouragement, and a warning: no more talking; no more complaining; no more excuses. Start with a step … one step to start the process going forward. And I wanted a timeline from him. Otherwise, his procrastination would not be invited into my space any longer.

He was now in start-over mode. One more time.

Timelines … what and which do you set for yourself? When I work with a client, stated objectives are the beginning step — with questions on my side, more usually surface; I learn about “the book” to come, and timelines are identified. When I know when the vision is to have a true book in hand, I can easily work backward and set mark-off months when specific phases must be done.

Timelines … what are yours?

Timelines … they are not for procrastinators …

  • they are for those who have a vision;
  • for those who have a passion; and
  • for those who have a commitment.

Is that you?

Does it all go smoothly as you progress? Or perfectly? Nope — there are mistakes and a few stumbles along the way. Persistence and Patience and Vision move you forward. And think about it. If you’ve ever had an infant in your midst, he or she is a master the stumble. Moving from a crawling infant to standing to a stumbling and falling walker to a true master at zipping around on two chubby little feet is a marvel to behold. Plus giggles and smiles.

Writing and publishing are just like that. You will stumble. You may fall down. You can even become disillusioned. But with your vision; with your persistence; and with the momentum of a goal insight, you will do it. It’s part of the author and publishing success formulas.

What are your timelines for your writing; your publishing; your marketing; you’re what?

How about: for your author success.

Dr. Judith Briles is a book publishing expert and coach. She empowers authors and works directly with authors who want to be seriously successful and has been writing about and conducting workshops on publishing since the ’80s. Judith is the author of 37 books including Author YOU: Creating and Building Your Author and Book Platforms, Snappy Sassy Salty: Wise Words for Authors and Writers, and How to Create a $1,000,000 Speech. Her personal memoir When God Says NO-Revealing the YES When Adversity and Loss Are Present is a #1 bestseller on Amazon. Collectively, her books have earned over 45 book awards. Judith speaks throughout the year at publishing conferences.

Throughout the year, she holds Judith Briles Book Unplugged experiences: Publishing, Speaking, Marketing, and Social Media. All are two-day intensive limited to a small group of authors who want to be seriously successful. Join Judith live for the “AuthorU-Your Guide to Book Publishing” podcast on the Toginet Radio Network HERE.

Follow @AuthorUYOUBooks and @MyBookShepherd on Twitter and do a “Like” at AuthorU, and join the Facebook group Book Publishing with The Book Shepherd. If you want to create a book that has no regrets, contact me.

©2021 Judith Briles — The Book Shepherd™ All Rights Reserved.



Dr. Judith Briles

Dr. Judith Briles is a book publishing and book marketing expert. She is a recipient of 47 national book awards, author of 37 books. Known as The Book Shepherd.