The Art of Distraction

We all face it at some point or another. You’re sitting down determined to work on your manuscript. You have your favorite drink at the ready, a comfortable chair, the perfect playlist going, you open your WIP…then promptly open solitaire. Well, it may not be solitaire for you, but it is for me.

I let myself get distracted. Not because I don’t want to work, but because I need to clear my head. I can start working on my WIP, but if I force myself to stay at it too long, I begin to lose the thread of the story which in turn ruins the rest of the story for me. This is when I need a distraction. Letting my brain take a break from my imaginary world is essential in keeping myself motivated.

It doesn’t even have to be a game. It could be something as simple as walking around the house, or going outside for some fresh air. Just something to clear the cobwebs from my head. These are moments I really look forward to since while leaving the desk for a few minutes allows me to think of the story without staring at it.

Is there anything worse than staring at a screen and trying to figure out how you’re going to get the story where you want it to be? Well, I’m sure bamboo shoots under the fingernails would be slightly worse, but I don’t know. It can be agonizing to know where you want the story to go, without knowing the how. Take ten to fifteen minutes to relax and clear your mind. Think about something completely different for those precious minutes. Play a game, take a walk, read that next chapter of the book you’ve been putting off, anything to get your brain juices flowing again.

What do you do to distract yourself when you feel ‘stuck’, or can’t find the right words for your next scene? Are you a diligent-can-write-2-hours-straight kind of writer, or are you a twenty-to-thirty-minute-spurt kind of writer?

1 Comment

Filed under Writing

One response to “The Art of Distraction

  1. I can write for a couple hours, but when I get stuck~I visit a local place that may have something to do with my MS or reminds me of my heroine/hero. It puts me back into their minds and stirs up the juices.

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