Thursday, June 25, 2009

Battle of the Distractions!

Usually, I just putter around the internet between scenes or sentences, depending on how well the writing is going. I go through the normal sites, and sitting in my field of vision, my novel waits in another window. That little reminder is enough to keep me going back and trying to work, even if it's just a little at a time.

TV watching is a different matter for me. I'll put shows on with the intention of half-watching while I work. I usually pick shows that are fairly formulaic or, better yet, reruns so I'm less liable to be distracted. That's the theory.

The reality is that I put my feet up, and watch more than I work. It's always "one more show" or at the next commercial. But commercial breaks are for attending to nature or skipping since I have a DCR now. So, I watch "just a little more." It's a lot harder for me to stay focused on my writing with the TV on than to sit on the computer.

As writers, we all have our own particular brand of overpowering distractions. For some people, the internet may as well be from planet Krypton. For others, every little chore and or household task is more compelling than a story waiting to be written. Work, family obligations, even writing-related tasks such as character sketches, outlines, setting notes, and so forth are all great ways to avoid writing.

In spite of the TV... and the ugly heat and humidity, I did put on 4.5k words in the last two days. I'm calling for a partial victory over distractions on that one.

Clearly, heat... and TV are my Kryptonite. What's your worst distraction? And how do you bullshit yourself into indulging anyway?


pattinase (abbott) said...

THE INTERNET. Without a doubt.

Barbara Martin said...

Since I only have a TV to watch DVDs on, regular programming is non-existent for me.

If I'm working on my writing, the only thing I listen to is music. Internet is only to research something I'm writing about that I may not know that well. I guess you could say I'm fairly focused when I write. Sometimes I find myself going into the kitchen to get a tea or a coffee or a snack, but that's just to get out of the chair to stretch my muscles.