Distractions…or…My Typical Morning…


I hear that sound too much lately, mostly in my own head.  The sound of time sliding by one tick at a time, while anxiety and too many shinies take precedence.

It’s early morning…early early morning.  I have 45 minutes before I have to get ready for work, so I want to be productive and start the day with some wordage.  I pull up my current manuscript in progress, and stare at the last sentence.  Yanno…that same one I stared at the night before.  It didn’t change.  Gremlins didn’t park themselves all cozy on my couch, pull the blanket up that the old lady dog pulled down, and work magic on my story overnight.  They also, by the way, did not clean the bathroom, wipe down the kitchen, or run a load of laundry, but I think they might have had a frat party in my daughter’s room.  Damn lazy gremlins.

So anyway, that sentence is still there, and the cursor is blinking at me, waiting for brilliant inspiration.  Inspiration that clearly hasn’t awakened yet, so I take a swallow of coffee and click over to Twitter for a minute.  Just a minute.  Just to see what the other coffee-swilling-half-awake people are doing.  I see that my agent was up at 3:30 in the morning, spouting brilliance and retweeting important information.  I marvel that anyone thinks that clearly at that time of–um–day.  Oh, and there’s a friend of mine who debuted a few months before me, linking to her perfectly organized blog and those of fifty of her closest friends, before she sits down to write all day and knock out ten books this year.  Okay, maybe that’s a bit over the top.  But she’s awesome and my hero, seriously.  I want to be her. So I click over to her website and check out her latest updates, notice a great idea that I want to incorporate on my site.  Actually, I saw this same idea done on another author’s site the other day, so I go there as well.  Yep, there it is.  I like how she’s done it a little better, so I make a note of it, and then go to my own website. 

My first reaction is the familiar one of disgust, as there are so many things I need to update.  It’s Wednesday and I didn’t get a chance to pre-write and post anything the night before, because I was taking my daughter to get the oil changed in her car and then stopping to get greasy fried chicken for dinner to comfort myself over the speeding ticket I got on the way home from work…but that’s yesterday’s drama, so I get back to my website.  I check the clock, and grimace that twenty minutes have passed, and I really don’t have time to deal with the updates right now.  I’ll do that tonight, when I get home, after I’ve cooked something–which is a good question–what am I cooking tonight?  My daughter has an appointment, and–   Anyway.  I’ll write the post when I get to work, and post it from my phone.  Yeah–there will be time for that.

So I click back over to the manuscript.  There is a good scene going, so why can’t I see what’s next?  Why am I stuck with these two people talking at a table, it should be funny, it should flow.  Why aren’t they working with me?  Maybe I’ll go back and read a little.  Or work on the first pass pages from my November release, that my publisher sent me.  No, that’s a long-term duty, and I only have–I look at the clock on the side table–fifteen more minutes.

I click back over to Twitter, and see someone’s link to their Facebook page, which I click on, knowing in the back of my mind I shouldn’t.  It’s another author friend, talking about getting ready for RWA National Conference, which is in a week, and I’m going too.  I read about her preparation, and think about my own scarce wardrobe and what I’m bringing for my signing table, and wonder if it is enough.  I wonder if I should hook up with other authors and do something fun for the Literacy Signing.  I wonder if I should do a newsletter drawing.  I wonder if my crazy local airport will keep from screwing up my luggage.  I think about the promo items in my closet and wonder how I’m going to get all that packed in with my clothes so it isn’t a nightmare at the airport.  I make a mental note to add some things to my ever growing RWA list of things to do, and then remember that I really wanted to have a certain word count done on this manuscript before having breakfast with my editor at the conference next Friday. 

Deep sigh.  I click back over to my manuscript.  I type in a sentence, then backspace it away.  I type in a different sentence, and hit Save.  Because I’ve looked at the clock again, and I have three minutes left. 

Time to get ready for the day job.  I’ll go pour another cup of coffee.  It will be better tonight.  After whatever I cook and laundry and pulling out those promo items.  The words will be there tonight.


About Sharla Lovelace

Writer of romantic women's fiction. Wife, mom, and wonderwoman...without the boobs. National Bestselling Author of THE REASON IS YOU, BEFORE AND EVER SINCE, and the e-novella JUST ONE DAY. Lover of anything red.

Posted on July 18, 2012, in Blog Posts and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. I so feel your pain right now. I am right there with you except I am turning resentful and ugly about all the other distractions of my day. It’s a wonder my family doesn’t send me packing. Which may be my subliminal intent. I’d love a week–or two–tucked away somewhere with no distractions to write. 🙂 Have fun at Nationals!

  2. There’s definitely too many distractions out there, Sharla, and when we’re feeling down about our sucky manuscript — or just sometimes out sucky selves — it makes focusing even harder. Next week will be better. The words will come together into brilliant sentences that will make you smile. Hang in there.

  3. Add kids to the mix– home for the summer–and I’m losing my proverbial mind! I’ve got deadlines to meet, ads to place, contest giveaways to host–and I’m refereeing the bickering of siblings? PLEASE!!

    No seriously, someone help me please! 🙂

  4. When not having time or inspiration to write becomes one of my worries I worry more…writing is my venting mechanism, it’s untouchable, it cannot be contaminated by the rest of my life’s mishaps…so I also write that ONE sentence as a way of keeping the line open and going and carry a notepad to jot down any ideas that may come up during the day without having to stop and feel the pressure in front of the computer screen…writing is good, writing is my therapy, we do good things together- is what I say to myself when the cursor is blinking in all its impatience… Inspiration and creativity have their own timing!!! Read you soon, Alexandra

  5. I have nominated you for an award. Click on the link: http://sunshinemac.wordpress.com/2012/07/19/one-lovely-blog-award/
    I’m still working on links so please bear with me.

  6. I can relate. I have found that the “little” To Do’s can add up to a lot of time. It took me a while to realize just how much time they were adding up to, but now that I am more conscious of it I have found myself putting what I can on hold until the weekend and getting more of my writing done during the week. :o) I checked out your book, “The Reason is You” on Amazon and I saw a lot of great reviews! Keep up the great work!

%d bloggers like this: