Distractions, Distractions (Oh, Look, Yarn!)

Yarn!! Yay, yarn!! Or squirrels! Look how quickly they run and the memes!! Oh, the lovely, lovely memes.

No! No! We must focus, we must put the words to the page, edit those lines, make sure all the t’s are crossed and i’s are – – is someone making cookies?

It happens that quickly. There is exquisite focus for several minutes or hours, sometimes days if you’re lucky before you’re slapped in the face with a distraction that has the power of a flyswatter coming down on the unsuspecting insect in question. Too much time is then spent chasing memes across Instagram or pinning recipes and home improvement projects to your boards on Pinterest. Eventually, you remember that you’re an author, an editor, a publisher and that you have work to do.

Books don’t write themselves! They don’t fix their own internal mistakes or magically fly to the shelves of your nearest bookstore on tiny angelic little wings! The work needs to be done for everything to coalesce into the nice little package it needs to be in for success. Yes, we know you need to update your blog and make sure your Twitter followers know that you’re actually living the #writerslife, but that doesn’t take hours; that doesn’t require you to look at five different cat videos in order to ‘get in the mood’ to write that scene, or fix that chapter, or make sure that font set is actually going to print properly and not just stack on itself in that annoying way we all hate when our printers jam.

So, how do we make sure we get that work done without looking at the pretty squirrels?

Turn the internet off – most computers have this feature now. Close the windows; or don’t, we all need a little vitamin D but if you leave them open, don’t be drawn by the allure of fluffy tails and pretty flowers. Make sure the dryer isn’t running during work time to annoy you when the buzzer goes off over and over because it keeps fluffing yesterday’s load of whites. Get your drink of water, or wine, or coffee, or whatever it is you need and that necessary snack before you sit down, pick your playlist, plant your bottom right in your little chair and get to work.

You know, after that one little cat video my friend just sent…

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