Sunday, January 29, 2012

Inter...ruptions

Life is full of interruptions. Some of them are good (butter tarts & family birthdays), others, not so much (marking tests & drawn out phone calls). Sometimes it seems as if life is conspiring against me - or more specifically against my writing. I bet you've had those moments as well.

For me, January has been FULL of interruptions. I didn't seem to get more than 20 minutes at a time for writing throughout the entire month.

I'm currently working on the ending of my wip. I've deleted 40 pages. Several times. I know what is going to happen - and I like the way the ending is going to play out, but I can't get it written. The time frames have been choppy - and the writing? Choppy as well.

I should be used to it. I often have times in my life where I only get small chunks of time. But for this ending I need to get some serious time in to create some flow. Hopefully February is a kinder month! I'm not counting on it though!

How do you deal with those short chunks of writing time?

38 comments:

  1. I hate it when I go away and don't take my laptop with me. I usually make notes so I can write a poem when I return home.

    Yvonne.

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  2. It is really frustrating to not have access to our tools. My day job is too full to do any writing there, and life at home has been crazy too!

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  3. You just described the last two months for me. I'm in the same position as you are on the WIP. I have a few chapters I'm cutting and already have a general idea on what I plan on replacing them with. In the end it should have a tighter more cohesive flow.

    So what do I do? Notes, lots and lots of notes. I carry a small pad around with me everywhere. Those 20 min. increments are spent, putting the notes at the end of each chapter where I want the changes. When I get more time, I'll have everything right where I want it on hand. (Hugs)Indigo

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  4. It's really hard to write in little chunks. Sometimes, if I'm smart, I'll know better than to try.

    I'll use the little chunks to outline, brainstorm, or blog -- and save up the writing for when I know I'll have a solid hour or so. That does help to make the hour more productive.

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  5. Indigo - good advice! My day job is all consuming and to be honest, my writing rarely crosses my mind then. But I'm going to try that notepad idea! It'll hopefully help me keep more on track and get some flow going!

    Diane - I do that too, but lately those hours have been impossible to come by, so I've been trying to do my writing in there too. Not working out so well at the moment - but hopefully soon! :)

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  6. I've had lots and lots of weeks like this and have no advice to you! Except I know if you try to pack it in and you're not feeling it - you'll delete more than you write! (at least, that's how it works for me) Good luck and take care!
    erica

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  7. Erica - I have been doing that a lot this month! The delete key has been very busy. Maybe I need to leave the writing until I can get in a full hour ... whenever that will be!

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  8. I guess I'm lucky in that department. Aside from the day job, I can pretty much write every night after work AND Saturday and Sunday, too. no kids to worry over. Just a dog that needs a walk that will do us both good.

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  9. I get frustrated when I only get small chunks, especially when I'm nearing the end of a project.
    Hope February is better for you.

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  10. Ms Hatch - you're lucky! Although I do love my crazy, chaotic, wonky little life :) Just need a few more hours in those days!

    Susan - me too! Thanks - those tiny chunks are starting to drag me down a little!

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  11. You sound like me--I've rewritten that ending so many times, I tell you! And, because I was out of town, I lost four days. I need BIG chunks of writing time but, alas, little is all I'm getting. Good luck to you and here's to hoping for some big bites of writing!

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  12. Mary - here's hoping February is kind to us! Hope you've recovered from that trip - I bet is was equal parts exhausing and enjoyable! :)

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  13. I'm absolutely terrible with these tiny windows of writerly opportunities. I find I fritter most of it away anyway by procrastinating further! LOL!!

    Yay for your wip progress though and good luck with your ms re-writes!! Keep at it!! Take care
    x

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  14. I hate it when I can't get in long spans of writing time--it's so frustrating to start working on something and then have to stop.

    I hope you get some longer writing time soon!

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  15. I don't do well with short chunks either. It's all right for planning, but now that I've started writing my third book, I need some actual writing time.

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  16. With teaching and a five-year-old, I rarely get decent stretches of time to write. I steal them when I can!

    I hope February is a little calmer for you!

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  17. Luckily, little chunks have been all I've needed lately, so its been working okay. But just as soon as I need some major time to start a new project, that's when I'll be in your shoes. It's frustrating! :)

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  18. Hope February is kinder to you. Life does have a way of messing things up.

    Mason
    Thoughts in Progress

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  19. Well you know what they say, life is what happens while you're busy making other plans... I like to think that all those interruptions do amount to something in the end.

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  20. Well you know what they say, life is what happens while you're busy making other plans... I like to think that all those interruptions do amount to something in the end.

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  21. Old Kitty - it's really hard to get focused and get going in those small chunks. Especially with this ending!!

    Golden Eagle - thanks! I hope for some 'real' time soon too! :)

    Alex - exactly - I can plan, edit and make some revisions, but for real writing, I seem to need more!

    Stephanie - you're right. At least I have those small snatches of time. Life is crazy chaos - but I love it! :)

    DL - exactly. I can do a lot during those chunks, but the flow is seriously suffering at the moment!

    Mason - at least I love my life with all its nuttiness! But a few longer stretches would be nice :)

    Agnes - so very true. The interruptions are usually my life! Which I adore - and really wouldn't change anyway. :)

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  22. Frustrating. Sometimes I have to be blunt and tell the other person I really need to keep moving. Usually they take the hint and hurry things along. Usually.

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  23. I don't deal well with short chunks. Usually I just don't end up writing. I need to work on that.

    Hoping you find more time next month!

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  24. It's been like that for me this month too and now I've got a raging headache. Let's hope February is more productive. Be gone interruptions ;)

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  25. Stephen - it's been crazy lately - and most of these interruptions are unavoidable. *sigh*

    Janet - I tend to blog most of the time when I have those short chunks, but I'm getting desperate to write! :)

    Catherine - and be gone headaches too! Let's hope February shows us a little love!

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  26. I definitely work better with larger chunks but if all I have is shorter chunks, I'll do my best! Hope Feb. is more relaxed for you!

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  27. I do not handle short chunks of writing time well, so I can sympathise with you! Um... I usually just end up not writing for a while, until I can get at least a few hours in a row. It takes a while for me to get into the "zone"!

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  28. Jemi, you sound like a perfectionist. I like things just so, but can't imagine deleting 40 pages and more than once too. It does take time to get what you want just right.

    Time. Boy, do I need more of that. Hoping that February is a kinder month too.

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  29. Feb is the month of love, maybe your ms will show it to you. ;)

    Endings are hard. I find it even trickier when I know exactly how I want to to play out, and most importantly, how I want it to feel. And getting that feel can be hard.

    I hope February is kind to you!

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  30. I think February will be your month! January is too soon after all the Christmas hub-bub. When I edit and cut out sections, I save them to a separate document. Many a time, I've cut something,only to change my mind.

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  31. I've been thinking I might have to start handwriting a lot more - some days it feels far easier to snatch a few minutes here and there with pen and paper than drag myself to the computer.

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  32. I scribble on paper as much as I can. I need lots of drafting to get to the point where I can cut 40 pages...

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  33. Dezzy - I know! It was sad ... but necessary :)

    Laura - me too! That's pretty much the way I go - do the best I can :)

    Rachel - it usually doesn't bother me much - but this ending needs some serious time!

    JL - more time would be a very exciting thing!! I'm hoping Feb is kind!

    Jean - that's it exactly! Every time I write it, the feel is wrong (too sappy, too serious, too this, too that!). Hoping I can get it soon!

    Helen - I did keep the first version of the 40 pages - but not any others. They were all worse! :)

    Belle - I've never actually tried that. Hmmm.... might just have to give that a go!

    Deniz - I've never done the paper/pen thing - might just have to give that a shot! :)

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  34. I don't. I really don't! It's terrible, but I can't do short chunks. I have to have at least a day. So I cram cram cram and try to carve out time as much as possible. January was a write off for me. None. :p Here's hoping for Feb. For both of us! <3

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  35. Leigh - I actually don't know if I've ever had more than an hour or two in a row to write - a whole day would be paradise! Here's to a productive February! :)

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  36. If I'm terribly busy, I make the most out of chunks of time. Ten to twenty minute sessions of writing build word count, even though I prefer longer sessions (I also have better concentration during them).

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  37. Medeia - normally I'm okay with small chunks too, but this ending is giving me fits! It's flowing better now - I'm using pen and paper :)

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