Writing tip of the day – avoid distractions

If possible, there should be no telephone in your writing room, certainly no TV or videogames for you to fool around with. If there’s a window, draw the curtains or pull down the shades unless it looks out at a blank wall. For any writer, but for the beginning writer in particular, it’s wise to eliminate every possible distraction. If you continue to write, you will begin to filter out these distractions naturally, but at the start it’s best to try and take care of them before you write. I work to loud music – hard rock stuff like AC/DC, Guns ‘n Roses, and Metallica have always been particular favorites – but for me the music is just another way of shutting the door. It surrounds me, keeps the mundane world out. when you write, you want to get rid of the world, do you no? Of course you do. When you’re writing, you’re creating your own worlds.

………………………~Stephen King, On Writing (Pocket Books, 2000), 156.

About Marc Cortez

Theology Prof and Dean at Western Seminary, husband, father, & blogger, who loves theology, church history, ministry, pop culture, books, and life in general.

Posted on January 24, 2011, in Writing. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. No tv or video games for me, but I then to have some Jazz going on. 😀

    • Nice. I’m more of an indie/alternative person myself, but music is critical.

      TV is definitely out, but the bigger problem for me is the internet. I used to be able to go to a coffee shop to write and escape online distractions. But, now that every coffee shop has wifi, I actually have to exercise self-control. Bummer.

      • Well, once I go to a coffee shop my mind is set on light reading and some blogging – too many distraction! But I usually take a headset to keep out all the chatting. 😉

  2. Michael Fletcher

    I just need a large chunk of time if I ever want to creatively write. My wife and I try to give me one solid 5 hour block every week to just focus on writing projects I have going on in my head. If I do not have the uninterrupted time, it does not work.

    Music helps…usually something classical/instrumental

  1. Pingback: Anything to avoid writing « About Writing – The Personal Blog of Pace J Miller

  2. Pingback: Distractions and Foci | My Writer's Cramp

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