The other night I was asked how I stay focused. I will admit, It takes practice. The thing is, I know exactly what can distract me enough to take away my focus. My goal is to write everyday so I can get into that zone. My zone is when everything clicks and it gets to the point where the only thing I’m doing is typing and words appear on the screen almost as if my mind has direct access to the page. This is when I become in touch with myself.
What’s really difficult is the events happening around me. The news, Twitter, Facebook, Netflix, family, and friends all play a role in this network of distractions. This doesn’t mean that I don’t welcome it but some distractions are worse than others. I can still continue to write in all those cases. I’ve been known to write with the television on or with company over but the quality of focus goes down.
However, they’re are times when having that television on or texting that friend does help in the process. Just because I haven’t written a blog about the 9 people murdered in a church in South Carolina doesn’t mean I’m not feeling it. Things like this just serve as a reminder to me why I must continue to do what I do. Talking to friends and fellow writers has also helped me remember certain themes in the book that I’m trying to maintain.
I really feel that I need to be writing always and I’ve trained myself to continue the process by giving myself soft and hard deadlines. My first book, Hanging Upside Down, gave me the awareness I need to write a novel but it many ways I had no clue what I was doing. Writing book two has given me the ability to train myself to write when I want to. What that means is that, when I was younger, I would write when the mood hit me but now I’m dictating that mood and making those sudden spurts of inspiration last over a longer amount of time.
The thing about distractions is that they can feed into any type of writer’s block I may have.The best way I’ve counteracted this is by reading, which is not a distraction but a part of being a writer. I wont get into any of the new Netflix shows or play video games until I’m satisfied with my process with this first draft.