I set goals. I set the path toward my goals in motion. I trekked along, tripped and stumbled occasionally, but more or less, things seemed to be propelling forward, albeit at a relatively slow pace.
But still, I could see the path behind me getting a little bit longer every time I looked.
Then, I fell off the proverbial horse. Right into a mud puddle, flanked by dirty snowbanks.
This is where I’m sitting right now, all muddy, wet, cold and uninspired. Unmotivated. Unfulfilled.
My friend in Germany emailed me this morning and during the lengthy conversation she determined (correctly) that I am not focused. She said (paraphrased):
You want to write and focus on writing success yet you go out and pursue dog walking.
This has me stumped.
On the one hand, the dog walking is a business that is giving me a slight sense of relief:
- on the financial side of things I get instant income from dog walking (which helps supplement the food budget)
- it gets me out of this abode and into the fresh air which is very, very good for my mental health
It detracts from my writing. And my purpose which is to make income from writing.
Make no mistake, I am writing. A lot. This blog is a place that gets my writing engine started, which is why I post here quite regularly. Once I empty my head into this blog, my creative juices are flowing.
This is a good start to my writing mornings.
I credit this blog as my habitual routine. All the [good] books on writing talk about routine and habit extensively. Even if you only write drivel, do it anyway. Write daily. It’s the only way.
(I’m currently about halfway through Stephen King’s On Writing.)
Some days you may have noticed I don’t have a blog post up here. I do still write though…
I have a pseudonym blog and several other places where I write occasionally (but not as regularly as here). It keeps me writing, and that’s key.
But what do I do with it all?
I need an agent for my pseudonym story.
I also need an agent for my memoir. But first, I need to finish the memoir. It’s so close…
I may need to adjust the narration of the memoir which, as some of you know, was partly written in the third person narrative. (Because, recalling the events of my childhood illness feels like an out-of-body experience and when the words flowed, I wrote them down the way they flowed, not realizing until after I re-read them that I wrote the whole thing from the third person narrative).
Ugh. It’s confusing. I don’t know what to do with it. Or where to begin looking for professional help. Or where to take the money from to pay for professional help.
Yes, I know that the internet is full of assistance and advice but it’s so overwhelming and confusing sometimes that I just turn away and find myself getting distracted again.
What do I do about that? How to I maintain focus? Should I start making stricter schedules? This week ignore pseudonym writing and focus solely on memoir…next week is short story focus… week after, pick up pseudonym story and pursue that angle…
The way I write now is without rhyme or reason. I write what I feel like writing.
If I’m in the mood to write under the pseudonym, well then you won’t find me here in this blog. The type of writing I do under my pseudonym requires a certain mindset which I can’t fake.
On the other hand, if I’m in a reflective mood, I may pick up the memoir. But there, too, I can’t just fake it. Historical family events sometimes cloud my brain cells and I’m not always in the mood to dwell on the past, which is where much of the memoir writing comes from.
Which is why, more often than not, I’m right here in this blog, or in the WordPress Reader, dumping my spontaneous, candid words into a post and publishing it for your amusement. 😉
There are too many distractions. I allow the distractions to distract me which is something I need to learn how to overcome. Starting with the physical ones…
Anyone want to build me a She Shed? 🙂
So that’s where I’m at.
Tell me, what works for you in terms of removing, or overlooking distractions? How do you calm your mind so you can focus at the task at hand? What do you do when you stumble around with writer’s block, or worse, too many ideas and not enough time to dedicate to them?
See you in the comments.