This one specifically goes out to those who write on their computers, and even more specifically to those who write on computers hooked up to the internet. Would you like to know how I wrote 2,000 words on my computer this morning?
I wrote on a computer that was disconnected from the internet.
I’m easily distracted and the more I set myself for focused work, the more likely I am to get it done. Even in the middle of writing that sentence, I checked my email, adjusted my ukulele so it wouldn’t rest against the blinds, and stared at something shiny. Okay, that’s an exaggeration (I did move my uke), but that sort of situation has certainly happened to me before. Today I managed to sit down and write 2,000 words for the first time in a long time (I’m lucky if I squeak in a few hundred, and 1,000 words in a day is an amazing feat for me, though it is my daily goal). Removing all other distractions was helpful – I was at a coffee shop away from my TV and DVD player and books and video games and household cleaning projects – but the number one thing to cut myself off from to get writing done was definitely the internet.
Whether the internet was created to help government communication or how save organizations money or connects us all globally, really for me the internet is one huge distraction, and sitting down to write on a laptop with a broken wifi card helped me get the job done (that said, the story I’m writing is really sad and I think I need to go watch a funny TV show for a little while or see a toddler play with a puppy).
My recommendation to those of you who write on a computer connected to the internet? Disconnect your connection and start up your focus on writing.
(The awesome photo accompanying my post is borrowed from a post at GearFire: Tips for Academic Success about ways to keep busy without the internet, which was a response to an article at Speaking Freely that gives advice on things to do sans said dreaded shiny internet distraction.)