I admit I get distracted from writing. The lure of pretty much anything tugs me from my concentration and I end up multitasking a frenzy of activity that really doesn’t go very far. This led me to the subject of ‘distraction free writing’ and how that works.
Distraction free writing offers the writer a very basic text-only area to type out the words. No toolbars, buttons, or graphics to distract you from your goal.
As I write in MS Word I have six toolbars up, with a browser open to Dictionary.com, Evernote, and a cup of Hazelnut coffee at the ready. So when I find a number of web sites or programs that offer nothing but a text area in which to type, I sit staring at the emptiness feeling a bit lonely.
For myself, its not toolbars, or extra programs that distract me. Its phones ringing, doorbells, family needing something, pets wanting attention, a busy schedule, and a never ending list of things to do. No amount of ‘distraction free’ environments will trick me into thinking I should be writing with so much to do.
What I need is the fortitude to get it done, to simply focus on what is important, what takes priority. As one member of my group pointed out “You shouldn’t have to drag yourself to write”, and I agree. Writing shouldn’t be the dreaded chore of churning out words.
Writing should be the joyous escape of the mundane, to explore the ‘what if’ possibilities of our imaginations. And as so many published authors often share as a tip; you write without that inner editor…and just write.
My best writing time is at night- no distraction of phones or people at the door, or my son, pets, or husband to bug me. I can even leave my email alone.
Which just goes to prove you need to first focus on what distracts you subsequently deciding on how to remove those distractions.
Five Best Distraction Free Writing Tools covers some programs and services that provide distraction free writing.
SimpleText provides an example of a web based, distraction free environment. As does the Write or Die feature, that includes a timer to get you writing.