Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Do Not Disturb! Writer at Work


 

IWSG is a group of writers who share ideas and encourage others. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! Articles are posted the first Wednesday of every month. 



Writing Through the Chaos:  Are you one of those writers who can write anytime, anywhere?  In your office, at the kitchen table, in a restaurant or  a check-out line?  Interruptions don't phase you as you answer questions, help kids with homework, cook dinner, & give the dog a bath while continuing to write, never losing a word, page, or chapter?  Please share with me how you do that.

Once I start writing, interruptions  blow me out of the water.  My train of thought is often derailed by chaos around me and quickly lost if someone speaks to me.  My husband and I agreed that he wouldn't interrupt if the DND sign was on my closed office door unless the fire department, police, or an ambulance had been dispatched. 


 It's a good plan but often, as soon as I settle in and the passages start flowing, I hear a tap, tap as he gently knocks on my office door, easing it open and saying, "I hate to interrupt you but..."!  If I had a dollar for every time I've heard that neither of us would need to work. 

Another culprit is the telephone...How do telemarketers know when I'm deep in thought, churning out pages?  Again, my concentration is lost.  While I will turn down the volume, I prefer not turning the phone off in case of emergencies.  And yes, even the mad buzzing my cell phone makes on vibrate throws me off kilter!  


 I've tried every trick in the book except maybe the barbed wire! And unfortunately, setting up shop on a deserted island is not an option.  Now I'm turning to you, my support group.  While I realize that ultimately it's up to me to learn to "tune it out", I welcome your ideas, suggestions, and methods of tuning out the chaos that is the world around us.  How do you deal with constant interruptions and still immediately recapture your thoughts and ideas to continue writing your story?  Please tell me what works for you.

Take a few minutes to visit other members of the IWSG group by clicking on this link.  IWSG List

5 comments:

  1. I can put myself in tunnel vision mode pretty well, but I DO hate those knocks and interruptions. One of the things I've done that helps a LOT is I do Writing SPRINTS. I started a Facebook Group (Writing Sprints R Us) that has 70 some members, but about 10 active who can call sprints (an hour of focused writing) and the BIGGEST perk is I now have a legitimate excuse (and nearly trained) FAMILY think--'I'm sprinting until 8' puts them off and you don't have to stop long enough that you lose focus. It ALSO keeps my from getting sucked into a social media vortex. You're welcome to join if it appeals to you. And thanks for doing IWSG this month!!!

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    1. I know it's something I'll have to continue to work on. I thought about divorce but I'm used to him now! lol Seriously, concentration through interruptions is a big problem for me. I completely lost my focus and lose valuable writing time trying to regain my train of thought. Writing Sprints sounds like a good idea....I'll check it out!

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  2. I can write through anything except talking on the TV. Video game destruction-no problem, kids fighting - no big deal, heavy metal music - tune it out. But something about conversation always catches my ears and makes me feel I should pay attention. As for interruptions, close the door if you have one. I always told my family unless it's on fire or is arterial spray, do NOT knock! Hang in there, Sandra!

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    1. Conversation bothers me the most. It just breaks my entire thought process, and it takes awhile for me to get back in the groove! Mood music is great but it's the only "noise" I can write through.
      Thanks for the encouragement, Nancy!

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  3. Love the way this post turned out! It is so frustrating to lose that momentum and train of thought. I've been distracted while writing papers for grad school and had that horrible sensation of having lost some brilliant turn of phrase or idea. (It probably wasn't all that brilliant, but it *felt* that way!) Coming back to it never feels as good as how it felt while on that hot streak. Keep trying to perfect that "selective attention". I know you don't have the Y chromosome that makes selective attention a natural talent, but I have confidence that you can master it!

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