Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Things that Hold us Back

In the midst of our writing projects we can loose steam. It becomes a struggle to keep going. I’m a master of procrastination and excuses. Here are just a few:

I’m too tired to concentrate. I’m not good enough. I’ll just eat this one chocolate first. The house needs cleaning. I need another snack. I have to get ahead with my blog posts. I just want to switch off for a while. I’m not feeling well. I’m too hot. I’m too cold. The house is too noisy. The neighbours are too noisy. My brain is too noisy.

I could go on, but I’m guessing you get the picture.

Distractions will happen when we write. They aren’t insurmountable. We just have to be careful they don’t turn into excuses to avoid writing.

Get over it, decide to write, even if it’s a few words and don’t let anything hold you back.

What are some of your worst distractions? What are some of your lamest excuses?

43 comments:

  1. Now that's good advice. :D Especially since there are a lot of different distractions out there . . .

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  2. I am always distracted by the lamest idiocies. Gmail and Facebook being the two worst. My worst excuse is my lack of focus. I had to sit down and stop spinning.

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  3. Golden, so, so many!

    Bish, I'm hearing the voice of someone who can relate ;)

    Ben, oh yes, gmail and facebook are a couple of my worst ones as well. And focus? What's focus? ;)

    Melissa, thanks

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  4. Facebook is the bane of my existence.

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  5. Ah, Lyndylove, "The house needs cleaning" is my favourite one too, it just doesn't leave you with any guilt :)

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  6. Heidi, sometimes I wish I never discovered Facebook ;)

    Dezzy, lol, that's so true. Unfortunately I have to be desperate for distraction to use that one as an excuse ;)

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  7. It is hard especially when I am feeling lazy. I find that if I'm feeling this way, it's better to way it out. Better yet, pray about it and give it to Him. I know if I keep feeling that way, then I am giving way to the spiritual enemy! With that in mind, and by God's grace, I find myself writing again. God bless you sister.

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  8. That sounds like me this week...and last. Must break the cycle!

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  9. First of all, love the kitty, too cute.

    I hear you about distractions. I swear I get up to pee about twenty times an hour when I'm writing. I'm always coming up with gems but I'm not in a good place to write them down, if you know what I mean.

    I know I need to just cross my legs and get on with it, ha ha.

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  10. My biggest "distraction" or excuse or insecurity (or whatever you want to call it), goes something like this: There's nothing new under the sun. What do you have to contribute? No one reads fiction anymore...it's not important and on and on into infinity.

    Usually I start the day by sticking my tongue out at that voice, giving it the middle finger and saying you don't know anything. Either that or I play really loud music and dance until it goes away. :)

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  11. My worst distractions are my emotions. But then, those same emotions give me the ability (sometimes when everything comes together just right) to make my characters human.

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  12. My biggest distraction is the internet. Reading blogs, commenting on them, checking twitter and my e-mail.

    I'll write one sentence maybe a paragraph and read rush off to the shininess of the internet.

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  13. Video games and TV shows are among my worst distractions. I had to work on my writing at the library for three hours today, and I managed an easy 2,500 during my time there. Distractions are more like restrictions we put upon ourselves to keep from realizing our true writing goals.

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  14. I agree with Erinn--the Internet. I purposely do NOT join Twitter or Facebook, because my email and blogs are distraction enough! Even with my own blog, I usually limit myself to one post a week.

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  15. "I can't concentrate."

    *shakes head*

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  16. My most common excuse is definitely the I'm too tired to concentrate one. Lamest one is probably that I don't have time... like you said, even if it's just a little bit, you've just got to do it!

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  17. My biggest distractions are facebook, twitter, e-mail, blogs, and online scrabble. It's awful. Most days, I find I'm more productive when I leave the house, so I've been visiting a lot of coffee shops. Of course, on busy days, I want to watch all the people, so it doesn't always go according to plan.

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  18. My worst distraction: my email program. Every time it pings I MUST immediately check the email. Yes, I suppose I could just not open up the program at all, but then you'd be deprived of my lamest excuse :)

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  19. LOL! Yes I can identify with that. Blogging is one huge distraction. BTW I have a guest author interview over at mine on Friday :O)

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  20. Email is definitely my biggest distraction. Just the thought of a new, shiny message can rip me away from writing in no time. :(

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  21. Rcubes, prayer definitely helps to regain focus.

    Carolyn, hehe yep I'm in that cycle too

    Melissa, oh yes, I do know what you mean ;)

    Valerie, that sounds so familiar

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  22. Mohamed, you make a very good point. Often the cause of our distractions are the very things that make us good writers

    Erinn, but at the same time I couldn't live without the internet ;)

    Jeffrey, yep I hear ya with the video games :( Oo..and I like what you said: Distractions are more like restrictions we put upon ourselves to keep from realizing our true writing goals.

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  23. Carol, for that reason I haven't taken part in the NaNo forums too.

    Kelly, *chuckle*

    Alexia, and even when we have a mountain of time, there is still never enough. So, now is the time to write.

    Paul, I love the coffee shops. They are great to get away from the daily distractions.

    Jennifer, lol yeah that's why I don't keep my email program open ;)

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  24. Madeleine, lol

    Emily, you seemed pretty focussed for NaNo -- I bet you kept your emails closed for the duration ;)

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  25. The internet is the biggest distraction for me. I went to the library, without the laptop, yesterday and locked myself in one of the private study rooms so I could get some work done and not be tempted.

    Jai

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  26. My worst distraction is the internet, for sure. My lamest excuse is probably being too tired, but it's really hard to write anything good when my brain's going half-speed. :(

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  27. Jai, sometimes it's necessary to turn off technology

    Susan, I use the 'too tired' excuse a lot but really it doesn't take too much to put word to paper/computer. I have to keep reminding myself that it doesn't have to be good on the first draft. That's what editing is for :)

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  28. Oh gosh, so many distractions. There's the squirrel running along the fence, the cat chasing the squirrel,the postman, twitter, facebook...mmm. Coffee breaks, cupcakes.. It's a wonder I actually get any writing done, but I do somehow. ;)

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  29. Distractions come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. I go to the library where its quiet. I get lots of work done there.

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  30. I've been trying to push myself on NaNo and the distractions come from all directions. The worst is "just one game of solitaire"--it's never just one game. It's a ridiculous distraction--I normally haven't played solitaire until recently.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

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  31. Talei, aaah, the dreaded cupcakes!

    Stephen, but don't the books whisper sweet nothings to you while you are there?

    Arlee, your dilemma made me laugh out loud. Yup, I had to remove solitaire from my computer...but it's still on my laptop. Aargh!

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  32. These are all such classic distractions! Of course we want things to keep us from our frustrations and insecurities about writing whether we realize it or not, but I also think frustrations and insecurities make us irritable and more conscious of our surroundings.

    Are you doing National Novel Writing Month? I'm sure so many people doing that can especially identify with this post.

    Thanks for sharing! It will help me and others become conscious of when I'm procrastinating and why.

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  33. Love the post Lynda...my distractions are several: I am too tired, I am emotionally drained, I had a bad day, I am unable to concentrate, I need to catch up on my reading.

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  34. Hi Lynda - Thanks so much for stopping by and joining. Very nice to meet you. I signed up and will be back to read about your journey.

    Happy Writing and Happy Eating :-)

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  35. YES!!!! Twitter, blogs, email--mmm hmmm!

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  36. If you follow my blog you know I'm in the middle of edits. I must say, this is very hard for me. I can come up with any excuse not to do it. That's why I finally posted it on my blog, to help motivate me to the finish.
    Nancy
    N. R. Williams, fantasy author

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  37. Hi there! Have seen you here and there in others' blog comments or follow lists, and thought I'd come check you out. :)

    I let any and everything distract me. Social networking, snacking, going to the bathroom, washing my hands, snacking, napping, snacking... But you're right. It comes down to telling yourself firmly, WRITE.

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  38. Loveable, that's true, our frustrations do make us more conscious of our surroundings. And yep, I'm in the thick of NaNoWriMo. All my posts this week have something to do with it ;)

    Rachna, ah yes, I can relate to all of those distractions

    Whisk, welcome...and happy writing and eating to you too :)

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  39. Christina, I also need to be more disciplined when it comes to social media. Sigh.

    Nancy, editing isn't as fun and doesn't feel as creative so I hear your pain. But the end result is so worth it.

    Janna, welcome :) I've been bad with the snacking and social media in particular as well. But I've changed my snacks to water and I've limited my social media times. Not easy though.

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  40. You pretty much listed everything I run into! I might add the fact that BBC America just began showing first season episodes of Dr. Who in the afternoon. Distraction. So's NCIS. Solution? DVR and no tv!

    Great advice!

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  41. Procrastination is my worst enemy and my greatest ally :P

    For NaNoWriMo, a week's worth of no laptop (dead power cable) knocked my word count, so I lacked the motivation to get back to it once I had it juiced again :(

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