Monday, November 10, 2014

Distractable Me.

So far so good, with this NaNoWriMo thing. I've managed to write every day, forcing myself to even when I really don't feel like it. It is so much easier to give up on things than to push through and work at it. I'm right on track at just under 15,000 words. Hopefully, this is the turning of a new leaf for me!

One of my biggest problems, thus far, is that I am entirely too distractable.

I'll be thinking of the next bit of my novel, and then I'm distracted by a completely innocuous street sign that starts spiraling into its own story in my head, one that unfortunately has no place in what I'm working on. Or one of the kids says something that sparks an idea, again, one that has nothing to do with my current story.  Or a character will want to me to get to know them.

No matter how hard I try to tamp them down or push them out, these new ideas start clamouring for my attention, and kill momentum for the one I'm actually writing.  Already, this story is not the one that I sat down to write.  (Although I still plan to get back to my original idea at a later date.)

The solution I came up with is the "other ideas" folder.  I've created a folder within my manuscript so that when one of these new ideas comes up, instead of pushing it away, I open up my "other" folder and write down the scene, or the character, or the beginning of the plot. Once that's done, I find it'll leave me alone to get back to work. It only takes a few minutes, and then I'm back on track.

I am still counting these little sidebars in my total word count, since to me this is more about getting in the habit of slogging through when it gets hard and actually finishing something than anything else. Besides, who knows, maybe one or two will end up in my story after all and I just don't know it yet.

The best part is that when I'm finished working on the current book, I've got a whole folder of partially fleshed out ideas to choose from for my next project.

How about you? How do you push through distractions?


  1. I am constantly distracted! Especially by other social media sites. LOL!

    I would totally count your "other" writing in your totals because technically you are still writing.

    I hope you share what you have written after the month has gone by. I am doing NaBloPoMo and wow, I cannot believe how much time I am spending online (and I spent a lot of time online before). hehe! It's a bit overwhelming. But I want to meet new people and read new blogs so I am doing my best to get to them and comment.

    1. If I sit down and hop on Twitter "for a minute" before I start writing, I lose at least an hour.

      Thank you, my thoughts exactly!

      I'm going to polish it up first, but then I'll probably be looking for some beta readers, Brandy. I'll message you. :)

      You're doing a great job with NaBloPoMo! I tried it a couple of times, and didn't *quite* manage it either time. For me, it was just coming up with something new to write about every day. Of course, now I'm having the opposite problem. :P

  2. Sigh - I feel like my whole life is a distraction right now! Dying to read your novel - can I join the proofreading club?

    1. I'll definitely be having more than one round - I'll need your contact information though. :)

  3. The "Other" folder sounds like it's a great idea for you!

    I really like hearing about how you're going through the writing process. :)

    1. So far so good, Court! :)

      I'm glad - it's good to hear from you!