Monday, January 16, 2012

Taming My Internet Addiction

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a writer in possession of a good computer cannot get any work done due to well-honed procrastination techniques. (My apologies to Jane Austen.)


I have this love/hate relationship with the internet. I love it, but I hate it, but I love it. That's because it's SOOOOOOO hard to tear myself away from it and get any writing done. At least, that's how it was. Then I discovered FREEDOM. (Oh, man. This is sounding like a cheesy commercial, but I swear, it's all true!)


In the past eight years and three months, I've had ten novels published, plus numerous short stories, essays and articles. "How can you do all this when you, Lisa Yee, are the Queen of procrastination and/or the inter webs?" you ask, or I ask, or someone else asks.


Simple. I use cheap tricks, threats and what REAL SIMPLE describes as . . .

Yep. If you are anything like me, and when it comes to the internet, you have no self-control.


You're in luck!!! FREEDOM works for both Macs and PCs, this is from the website . . .


Via the internet (yes, irony!), I tracked down the creator of FREEDOM, Fred Stutzman . . .


Then, I peppered him with questions. Here's what he had to say . . .

LISA: I ADORE Freedom. Being an internet junkie, it allows me to write without having to resort to a typewriter. Fred, do you have internet addiction problems or are you just empathic to those of us who have lack of control?


FRED: I'll put it this way - I research social network sites for a living. There's very much a blurring between what constitutes work and what constitutes hours of mindless clicking of friends' pictures. I don't know if I'm addicted but I do know that this technology helps make those lines a little clearer.

LISA: Um . . .


LISA: You do know that authors love you, right? When you were musing about, did you have writers in mind when creating Freedom?

FRED: I have been told this! In my perfect world, I get to spend most of my day writing, so I like to think I identify with writers. My reality - after meetings, service, etc. get subtracted - actually leaves very little time for writing, so I have to be efficient in that time. Freedom is a software for people who need to concentrate on long-form tasks, where concentration is essential. I think this appeals to writers.


LISA: I noticed that you are a postdoctoral fellow at Carnegie Mellon, graduated from North Carolina at Chapel Hill's School of Information and Library Science, and have a BA in Economics, and have a graduate certificate in survey research (quantitative methodology) for Odum Institute for Research in Social Sciences. So then, what's your favorite breakfast cereal, and why?

FRED: All that education means I can locate my breakfast cereal in a values-sensitive interdisciplinary framework when studying it and designing technology to support it. Also: Granola.

LISA: I made this homemade granola just for you, Fred! (Okay, so maybe I didn't make it, but I would have if I had superior granola skills.)


LISA: Can you tell us how many people are using Freedom? (Not at this very moment, but overall. Ironically, those using Freedom right now would not be able to read this.)

FRED: Over 300,000 have downloaded the trial!


LISA: Did you have any idea it would take off like it did?

FRED: No, it was a surprise. But I knew when I used it for the first time I was on to something. It was if I had transformed my $2,500 computer into a typewriter, but that was exactly what I needed.

LISA: Me, too!


LISA: You have another program called ANTI-SOCIAL, that locks out users from their social media sites. Is this A) as popular as Freedom, B) less popular than Freedom, C) equally as popular as Freedom, or D) Other?

FRED: By volume it is less popular (I don't have a Windows version yet), but I think the idea really appeals to people. I actually use Anti-Social and Freedom equally…Anti-Social is nice when I am doing research.


LISA to Readers: Do you find this adorable?

WELL, STOP IT and GET BACK TO WORK!!! (After you finish this blog, of course.)

LISA to Fred: And finally, is there an internet tool that hasn't been invented yet, that would help you with your life? If so, what would that be?

FRED: Espresso by email? Sorry, I haven't had lunch yet, creativity is sapped.



Are you interested in FREEDOM? You can test drive it for FREE or own it for just 10 bucks by CLICKING HERE. It's the best writing investment I've ever made.


Live in or near Long Beach, CA (or have access to a car, train, bus or plane)? Then come see me at Apostrophe Books on January 21, 2012. I'll be there from noon to 1:30 p.m.!

Disclaimer: No proofreaders were harmed (or even used) in the creation of this blog.

Photobucket CLICK HERE to find out about Lisa's newest book, WARP SPEED!!!

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Lisa Yee
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