When Your Time To Write Falls Apart

by Anne Wayman

fall apartIf you follow this blog you know I’m a fan of setting up a regular writing schedule. It works for me and I’ve discovered I’m not so unique after all.

I get up at 5 and do some reading while I drink coffee, meditate from 6-6:30, do some stretching and begin my writing day at about 6:45.

Sometimes, however, my writing day, like yours I suspect, simply falls apart. I lost all of yesterday to a migraine headache and was really looking forward to writing this morning. Hah!

Distracting myself from writing

First I decided I really had to find out how to make Outlook work better – yeah, a distraction, but its sluggish behavior was driving me nuts. A quick google search for something like ‘why is outlook so slow’ revealed Outlook’s Search Folders, which I’ve ignored for years, have a folder called Large Mail. Who knew? Just opening it took ages, and deleting it took even more time.



Then I got one of those notices from Windows that it need me to restart my computer in order to finish installing updates. Often I’ll ignore those knowing I’ll be shutting my computer off at the end of the day, but today it seemed important that I do it right then. While my computer was fixing itself I washed dishes and started breakfast.

At 8 am I had my regular call with my accountability partner and it lasted longer than usual.

At about 8:30 my daughter called.

Barely started

It’s now 9:07 and I’ve barely gotten started… a full two hours and a bit more late!

Okay, it’s true – I didn’t have to do the Outlook thing and I probably could have postponed restarting my computer. And I could have shortened my call with my accountability partner, probably. And I could have let my daughter’s call go to voice mail.

But I didn’t.

I used to be rigid about my writing time. Over time, however, I came to trust myself and my writing processes more. (And another tech problem just showed up!)

There will be days when I’m interrupted or days when I’ll be sick – it’s part of being human.



The point is the just keep moving. If you can’t write today, write tomorrow. If you’ve let yourself get distracted, roll with it and come back to the keyboard – if the distractions are something you can change, great, make the change.

Whatever happens, know it’s not the end of your writing world, if, and only if you get back to writing just as soon as you can.

What’s your experience with your writing plans falling apart? Let’s talk about it in comments.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Jodi Hughey November 21, 2013 at 7:56 am

Thank you for showing me I am not the only one!!

It seems like every day my writing falls apart. I wake up bright and early with every intention of putting my best writing forward, and then the phone rings or it takes longer than expected to reply to an email or my stomach growls.

It always seems like something is trying to sabotage my writing time, but like you, I trust myself and my writing process. In the end, I know I will get the writing done. It may take a bit more persistence, but it WILL get done.
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annew November 22, 2013 at 9:53 am

Jodi, glad to help you recognize you’re not alone… hugs.

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jorgekafkazar November 16, 2013 at 1:37 am

Oh, yeah, Anne. I got a call on Monday from an actress asking if I had anything she could submit to an LA-based theatre group. By Wednesday? I ran through the options and came up with 4 pieces, then found two more I could adapt, in a pinch. I just finished the adaptation, recasting a short story as a 12 minute play. An amazing amount of work, for something that short.

In the meantime, my screenplay sat, untouched. I’ve not finished my homework for the dialogue course I’m taking. I did manage to attend two workshops and present something at each. And now I’m tired and am going to bed, hoping I can make my 9 am meeting tomorrow. Er, today. Heck, maybe I’ll sleep in.

Be well,
Jorge

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annew November 19, 2013 at 11:34 am

Considering how different we are I always seem to identify with the spirit of your comments.

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Amandah November 15, 2013 at 4:38 am

Sometimes, my writing falls a part for a good reason. For example, my nephew lives with me and I will stop writing to listen him when he comes home from school. He tells me about his favorite class, construction. I like hearing about his class projects.

On the other hand, sometimes my writing falls a part because the phone or doorbell rings. Then there are the barking dogs, inside and outside. Let’s see, what else? Sometimes, I’m not motivated and need to go for a run or walk. I usually get back on track later in the day.
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annew November 19, 2013 at 11:35 am

Yep… it just like that isn’t it.

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