Season 1 | Episode 4: "Procrastinating"
This episode of Zeugma focuses on procrastination, a storied American pastime that can be both facilitated and interrupted by the Internet. The Zeugma team considers and tests various methods of communal and individual procrastination prevention, speaks with a UT professor who's an expert on procrastination, and talks to a gamer who's an expert at procrastinating. And, of course, we do a little procrastinating of our own.
Image via NPR
Episode Producer: Hala Herbly
We start this week's episode with a look back at our podcast team's own procrastination habits, documenting some moments from the meetings that led up to this episode's publication. After establishing that we are all immersed in this episode's subject matter, two of our group's members sit down to talk about one way of preventing procrastination: National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, which encourages participants to compose an entire novel in the space of—you guessed it—a month.
Next, Zeugma's Hala Herbly sits down with Dr. Trish Roberts-Miller, a rhetoric professor at The University of Texas at Austin who is currently doing research on procrastination and its relationship to writing habits. She's also, as you'll learn in the interview, someone who's had plenty of first-hand experience with procrastination, its advantages, and its drawbacks.
Following that interview, we have two members of the DWRL staff each test out a technology designed to prevent the procrastination, with a specific focus on the putting off of writing. Those technologies? The affable Pomodoro Technique and the sadistic software "Write or Die." Finally, Zeugma team member Andy Uzendoski talks with a mystery guest who's seasoned at using the game Dwarf Fortress to procrastinate at work.
Throughout the episode, we explore procrastination's relationship with pleasure and pain, what motivates us to procrastinate, and how digital technologies can both encourage and discourage procrastination—writing-related or otherwise.