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Saturday, July 29, 2006

Little and Often

I'm not one of those people who can sit for hours at a time writing. In fact, I can't sit for hours at a time doing anything - thanks to my 20 second attention span. Interruptions don't bother me. I can stop writing mid-sentence to answer the phone or chat - it's not unheard of for me to write while msning with friends. Also, I always work with the radio on - silence just kills me.

It's a wonder how I ever get anything done. But I do. And it gets done in a fairly timely manner. Because I adhere to the 'little and often' principle. Which means my current ms is open all day, everyday. And I dip in and out it of as the mood takes me. This principle has worked for me all through my life. When studying I would never save all day Saturday/Sunday to work (I studied a lot while working), I would do some every morning before going to work.

I have never pulled an all-nighter in my life! Not counting clubbing/partying.

How do you work best?

I am seriously hyperventilating. No WAY can I work on my ms while I'm online! As for writing and msn-ing at the same time, forget it!

I can work with interruptions from the kids (unless I'm struggling through a sex scene since I need isolation for that!)but the thought of being online while writing just gives me a total paranoid meltdown!
Definitely no music. I get too distracted by the words and start singing along.

I keep email and an internet browser open while I'm writing, but when I hear that little 'You've Got Mail' chime, I usually can't stand it till I go see what it is. I should probably just turn off the volume, but I pretend that I might then miss something really important.

I either need quiet or a bunch of white noise. One voice or two just pulls me right out of my concentration--while I'm reading too.

It's horrible and very inefficient. I could get so much more done if I could block out sounds.
Oh my GOSH, Sara, we are twins separated at birth. That is EXACTLY how I write. I write four books (three pen names) a year, plus proposals, looking at galleys and all the rest of it AND four kids (baby is just 18 months). And I recently commented somewhere that I write in "bursts"--it sounds very much like your process. I thought I was the only one. ;-)

Wow, Erica! I've never found anyone who works quite like me! Though, I'm in awe.... 4 children and one 18 months... I've got 2 and they're now in their teens - still demanding, but in different ways.
I am the QUEEN of the all-nighter! Can't write in the morning, and I can't write in total quiet, but other than that, it's good.
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