Tag Archives: writing distractions

Distraction Reaction: Guest Post

Writers on WritingHey there PPP readers! Today we have a guest, Tim Young. He’s going to talk about dealing with writing distractions. He is a Hell’s Kitchen denizen: Writing and rocking, singer/songwriter and guitar player. He’s originally from Easton, Pa. Tim is published at red lemonade and Fictionaut. Follow him on Twitter: @timsored.


The keyboard is the new pen, which is fine with me; I like the noise it makes when I type. Those clicks and clacks mean the words and ideas are in the flow. The problem with the keyboard is its inextricable connection to the rest of the computer. Stopping for a moments thought may easily send one to search something online, check mail, etc., etc. I know you know how it goes. My idea is to distract the distraction. Be distracted but be creative. Instead of running right into the arms of the internet get up off your chair and walk around. Look in the fridge, go to the bathroom, grab more coffee or a snack. This lets your mind do some drifting but meanwhile you can still be thinking about the writing task at hand.

The next item on my list (If you’re not into lists I think it’s a good idea to go there) is the more than popular cell phone. I love my phone but it does not belong on the writing table. Someone mentioned this to me and I had a deadline to meet so at my next session I put the phone on my bed under a pillow. I like to talk to inanimate objects so I told the phone, don’t worry I won’t forget about you. But that turned out to be a lie. No sooner did I get into the clicky clack of my keyboard did I totally forget about the phone. I was released! Freedom was found and seeing and knowing progress was made is a juicy reward. I love rewards, don’t you? Rewards are great encouragement.

Talking is next. It’s obviously not required to speak to inanimate objects like I do, although I think it’s fun, but you may want to begin, if you haven’t already, to talk to yourself. It’s all about freeing ourselves up from the usual and mundane. I think some ideas flow much less inhibited if they are spoken out loud. We create characters right? So go ahead and be some of them. Talk it out, crack some jokes, humor is good medicine, as they say, it’s also useful to take the pressure off, lighten a moment when the keyboard is quiet. The best result being you might even stumble upon an idea for a new piece. Think of it like a jazz improvisation. Not knowing where your solo is going is a good thing.


Filed under Guest Posts

How not to self-edit your story away

You can reach your goal. It just seems dark right now, but you'll get there.

You can reach your goal. It just seems dark right now, but you’ll get there.

Or how a hillbilly buries her overly critical inner bitchy voice in the sand.

There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.

~Maya Angelou.

We all have that inner voice. H/she has got choke opinions from the food you’re eating, where you go, and down to the slippers you buy. This Talky McTalkerton analyzes, and then reanalyzes EVERYTHING, which isn’t always a bad thing. It could be a positive when it analyzes the cost effectiveness of buying the $100 extension pack for the RPG game you love, but its purchase results in you being short on rent. It becomes a writing hazard when you have a Work In Progress you need to complete and a deadline looming uncomfortably over your head. You write stuff. Change that. Write some more. Delete it all. Write some more. Change it. Write it. Delete it. Get frustrated and watch YouTube Videos for two hours. You must break the cycle or work will never get done.

What do you do?

You just have to write. I know, I know. That sounds so lame, but it’s true. Before that WIP can be a finished masterpiece, you have to get all of the words out. Here’s some ideas for you from me, Pinky Lee.

1. The old pen and pad. Obviously, I’m pretty into taking it back old school, but it does make it a little messier to scribble/scratch out words you’ve written.

2. Writing sprints. Set a timer, giving yourself 5 minutes, then 10 mins, etc. of pure writing. During that time period, you can not use the backspace. You can’t even go back over what you read. Eventually maybe you can build up to a writing marathon of an hour or two of pure writing.

3. Use distraction-free word processors like FocusWriteryWriter or WriteMonkey. Each are pretty unique programs that help to strip down writing, and offers different features to help you to set goals and achieve them. They showcase handy features like setting alarms, spell-check and even typewriter sound features *swoon.* They’re kind of stripped down versions of other word processing systems. Added bonus: free.

4. There’s an app for that: iAWriter, WriteRoom and SimpleNotes.

Here’s some things to get you started. You can write it out and get it done. I know you can. What are some ways you shut up your inner editor? Write them down in the comments. Love hearing from you guys!

Aloha ya’ll!


Filed under revision