I’ve said before on this blog how I do most of my writing every morning on my 1 ½ hour train ride to work. This has become a hard habit of mine, and it’s gotten to the point where if I don’t do writing here, my whole day feels soured and wasted. While this is great in terms of my overall productivity (I’ve never done this much writing before), it sometimes feels like a double-edged sword.
For example, I can’t really write unless I’m on the train.
Over the weekend, I had an idea for a short scene of my current work-in-progress. It wasn’t anything lengthy, but it felt right. Normally, I make a mental note of this scene, and would try to write it on the following Monday. This weekend though, I decided to try my hand at writing it over the weekend. Striking while the iron is hot, being proactive, what-have-you.
Except I couldn’t.
I started strong, to be sure. Words flowed to the page like they do when I’m hitting my stride. But, that strength was short-lived. Whether it was my cat demanding attention, my parents needing help with the television or smart phone, a text message popping up, or even just the allure of the internet (after all, I’ll just check one site real quick), I got too distracted too frequently to get any substantial writing done.
More than distractions though, I don’t think my mind was really “in the game” for writing. Like an athlete who has a set routine before a big game, I too have a routine for when I sit down to write. It’s not much, but it’s there and gets me ready to go. And part of that process involves the train. Plus, the train’s wi-fi is god-awful, so no distractions there. For an hour and a half, I can focus entirely on my writing.
Which, on a good day, is 3000 words.
If there’s anything this little attempt to write on the weekend taught me, it’s that routines are meant to be stuck by. There is a reason they work.
Do you have a designated writing spot? Have you ever tried to write outside of it?