1. BBolin
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    BBolin Member

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    Getting Distracted

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by BBolin, Feb 26, 2013.

    I'm about twenty thousand words into my first novel, and I keep getting new ideas for short stories that are seducing me. Is it a bad idea to take a break from the book and pump out a few thousand words on a new story or two?
     
  2. hippocampus
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    hippocampus Active Member

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    I don't see why not. I think a lot of writers on this forum do just that. As for me, I find it too distracting to work on more than one writing project at once. It may be because I'm rather new to the world of writing for pleasure. ;)
     
  3. Youniquee
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    Youniquee (◡‿◡✿) Contributor

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    Definitely! You'll still be enjoying yourself, writing an idea you want to write and improving in writing. You'll most likely come back with new ideas for your novel when you finish the short story. And hey, who says it has to be done all at once? You could go back and forth between the two :) Overall, it's up to you. It's always nice to take a break sometimes.
     
  4. Xatron
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    Xatron Contributing Member

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    I imposed a rule on myself that states that i can't write a word on my novel for two days from the moment a new idea i like comes to me. As a result i have written 2000 words in a month because i hit 3rd day once. I keep coming up with ideas about characters or settings and after i note them down i go write some writing exercises or short stories to pass the time.
     
  5. Mot
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    Mot Member

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    I get distracted too.
    However, there is one novel I have been working on for about five years. It isn't that the story is particularly difficult, it just got pushed to the very back each time I got a new idea (which included whole other novels).

    My advice? If you really want to get it finished, finish it while it's fresh and interesting. If you are writing solely for the pleasure, then go ahead and explore the new ideas.
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    doesn't matter what works for anyone else... whatever works for you is what you should do...
     
  7. The Tourist
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    The Tourist Banned

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    I think it's a very real problem, and I wish I had an answer. It happens to me all of the time, mostly while working at my job.

    Sometimes I'll get bored and prickly over sharpening a client's knife for 15 minutes. I'll tell myself I'll just do something else to calm down, and then sharpen my own knife for eight to ten hours. Or I'll have a sinkful of dishes that might take only minutes to finish, but I'll leave them soak while I spend three hours detailing one of my bikes.

    I think it's a problem, but then, I'm retired. My time is my own and I do not (as of yet) support myself by writing. I have walked away from my book for weeks at a time. One week I got so tired of writing that all I did was write--letters to the editor in a local newspaper. I know that sounds counterintuitive, but it "felt" right.

    Now, I know blowing off steam is essential. But if you're noticing the condition, I would recommend that you find out why. If you're all over the map, but finally admit your lack of focus is because your marriage is in jeopardy, then you have to act.
     
  8. BBolin
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    BBolin Member

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    I probably should've mentioned that I gave myself a deadline for the novel. . And I am serious about completing it, so it shouldn't even be a question, but the thing that's bugging me is that one idea in particular has got me more excited than my novel-at least, where it is at this point. Maybe that's a GIANT sign that I should think about changing the direction it's heading, huh?
     
  9. TracyH
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    TracyH Member

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    Hi,

    I've reached and passed deadlines many times, so many that I no longer give myself deadlines.

    I'm currently working on two books/novels. When I get stuck on one, I go back to the other. It helps me feel productive and cuts down on the frustration of staring at a blank page.

    If I'm stuck on both, I'll read a book, or get into a good movie or mini series. Again, it relieves that non productive feeling that I find intolarable.

    But as someone else said, whatever works for you.
     
  10. Oswiecenie
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    Oswiecenie Active Member

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    It's a good idea, go for it. It never hurts to get some distance on your work in progress.
     
  11. live2write
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    live2write Contributing Member

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    I have been distracted lately too. Sometimes it is good to take a break and think about other things and somethings about your story
    I just have a problem where I act out the scenes and not write them down
     
  12. jwideman
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    jwideman Senior Member

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    As long as you can come back to finish it, why not? Over the course of writing a novel, it is not uncommon to knock out a few short stories.
     

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