The Difficulty of Staying on Task

When I do my job, I tend to be watching a show or listening to something on YouTube or my computer.  My mind tends to work like a gear, every time a groove locks into place it needs to step back from writing.  That is when I will do my research, read or pace around the house.  Yes, my writing involves quite a bit of pacing, especially if I find the serene or topic exciting.

After a little bit of time the gear turns again and I am drawn back to the keyboard.  I hammer away, but after some time my mind grows tired and I research for my book or look for inspiration.  It is a rather chaotic process, but one that surprisingly works well for me.  It may work for my writing process, but not so much with research.  I really enjoy learning and researching things.  It is just easy for me to go down rabbit trails because I’m so curious.  I can spend a lot of time, learn many new things, except for what I was originally researching.  That is one of the greatest difficulties I face as a writer.  It’s one of the more minor challenges, because research is necessary, even for a completely fictional setting.

For one of my manuscripts I’m working on, I’ve been researching the Freetown State Forest in Massachusetts.  Mostly what I have found are the strange stories surrounding it.  Great, then I read about those and after a few hours I learn very little about the geography, which rather boring but it’s still important.

I wonder if other writers are guilty of being easily distracted as well.  Let me know in the comments!