HOW I SHOT FOCUS?! (seriously need help)

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HOW I SHOT FOCUS?! (seriously need help)

Postby c.t.,girl » Sat Feb 19, 2011 3:38 pm

Every time I want to sit down and write (like now) I always start looking at everything around me...mostly because I'm just trying to use my imagination to think up what happens next in my stories, but almost every time I get distracted and then I can't focus at all on what i was going to do. I will get up and start cleaning the room around me, I'll dust, move furniture, etc. etc. EVERYTHING BUT WRITE.

So I was wondering and was hoping HOW DOES ONE FOCUS PROPERLY?! Or rather what helps you to focus on writing a story, a paper for class or just doing homework? I've tried removing myself from distractions (Parents aren't a lot of help with that though. "HEY, CHRIS! LOOK AT THIS ONE DUDE KILLING THIS OTHER DUDE ON TV!"). I've tried a different location (my bedroom, a library, a coffee shop, a focused friend's house, etc. etc.), but I still get distracted by either the objects/people (ANYTHING) in the room. I've tried listening to instrumental music, but then I start wanting a specific type of music. Then I start just looking at the people to watch them flow with the music, or look for music on youtube convincing myself I'll just listen to this one song and get back to work. I TOTALLY DON'T AND END UP WASTING AN ENTIRE NIGHT OF WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN A PAGE OF AWESOME ZOMBIE STORY.

I'm going crazy here guys. ;n; HALP!
[color="DarkOrange"]"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things... hey... the good things don't always soften the bad things; but vice-versa the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things and make them unimportant." -11th Doctor

"The advice I like to give young artists, or really anybody who’ll listen to me, is not to wait around for inspiration. Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part and a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you. If you’re sitting around trying to dream up a great art idea, you can sit there a long time before anything happens. But if you just get to work, something will occur to you and something else will occur to you and something else that you reject will push you in another direction. Inspiration is absolutely unnecessary and somehow deceptive. You feel like you need this great idea before you can get down to work, and I find that’s almost never the case." - Chuck Close[/color]
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Postby FllMtl Novelist » Sat Feb 19, 2011 5:39 pm

First of all, turn off the internet before you start writing. Check your email if you must, but that's it. You can catch up on webcomics or youtube stuff later. Also, never enter chat.

Set aside a time to write, and don't use it for anything else if you can help it. Don't let anything short of your parents, choking, or a fire drag you away from that computer.

If you already have a concept for your story (I gather you're writing fiction), and have any ideas about your characters or setting, don't sit at the computer and look around the web or out your window for fresh ideas. Start doing things with what you have. Also, not everything you write involving a couple of your characters has to show up in your original story. If it's a zombie thing and your protagonist will constantly be fighting for his/her life, perhaps you could try plopping your character down somewhere where there are no zombies. Like modern-day New York. Or the Middle Ages. Or on some Steampunk dirigible. (If you decide to check out those last two, do not go on Wikipedia to study those time periods. Just don't. It's only an exercise.) Who cares? Whatever you write with your character will help you know him or her better, and will help you come up with more ideas. ("Wow, I did not know Julie was allergic to cake. I think I'll put in a scene where she fights zombies in a bakery! :D")

As for music, some people suggest that while writing, you listen to music you don't like. It helps you to tune it out, and therefore get more into whatever it is you're writing.

Do you know anyone you want to show your writing to, or who is interested in seeing it? Maybe you can ask them to nag you to write a chapter every week.

I hope this helps~ Don't get discouraged!
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Postby goldenspines » Sat Feb 19, 2011 5:46 pm

I'm no expert writer, and not really a constant one either, but whenever I do write (or draw, which I do more often) I tend to use music to my advantage and pick a song (or a play list) that fits with what I'm creating and helps stimulate my ideas for my story/drawing. So instead of using music as a distraction, I use it as a way to get back on track with my project. :3 I suppose you could do this with a lot of things around you. Take them and relate them to your story/project.
In a nutshell, draw as much inspiration from everything as you can and there won't be any distractions. XD;

Plus, I find that if I'm trying too hard to not be distracted by things around me and be all "FOCUS NOW! D:" I tend to get distracted because I am making my project more of "work" rather than something I enjoy working on. :D

And don't be afraid to write constantly, even if it's only a couple minutes at a time. Take a notebook around with you everywhere you go to take notes, write paragraphs, etc. as ideas come to you.

Sorry, it's a bit hard to explain. >.< Best of luck to you, though!
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Postby ShiroiHikari » Sat Feb 19, 2011 5:52 pm

I could use some help in this area too. Music is pretty much a no-no for me while I'm writing; don't know about anyone else. Even music I dislike distracts me. XD
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Postby Warrior4Christ » Sat Feb 19, 2011 6:07 pm

(I thought this thread might've been about photography...)

I used to be like this quite a bit for uni assignments.... I once even procrastinated on an assignment by doing another assignment (which was easier but due much later). Then I had that one fully polished and I was disappointed that I had to go back to the boring one which I got distracted easily with....

Anyway, try maybe running around the block (pondering stuffs to write), then come back and sit down and start writing, because you might be a bit too exhausted to be distracted.
Everywhere like such as, and MOES.

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Postby c.t.,girl » Sat Feb 19, 2011 7:24 pm

So you guys know what TYPE of stories: Fiction/Mystery/Thriller

FllMtl Novelist (post: 1459969) wrote:First of all, turn off the internet before you start writing. Check your email if you must, but that's it. You can catch up on webcomics or youtube stuff later. Also, never enter chat.

Set aside a time to write, and don't use it for anything else if you can help it. Don't let anything short of your parents, choking, or a fire drag you away from that computer.

If you already have a concept for your story (I gather you're writing fiction), and have any ideas about your characters or setting, don't sit at the computer and look around the web or out your window for fresh ideas. Start doing things with what you have. Also, not everything you write involving a couple of your characters has to show up in your original story. If it's a zombie thing and your protagonist will constantly be fighting for his/her life, perhaps you could try plopping your character down somewhere where there are no zombies. Like modern-day New York. Or the Middle Ages. Or on some Steampunk dirigible. (If you decide to check out those last two, do not go on Wikipedia to study those time periods. Just don't. It's only an exercise.) Who cares? Whatever you write with your character will help you know him or her better, and will help you come up with more ideas. ("Wow, I did not know Julie was allergic to cake. I think I'll put in a scene where she fights zombies in a bakery! :D")

As for music, some people suggest that while writing, you listen to music you don't like. It helps you to tune it out, and therefore get more into whatever it is you're writing.

Do you know anyone you want to show your writing to, or who is interested in seeing it? Maybe you can ask them to nag you to write a chapter every week.

I hope this helps~ Don't get discouraged!


Hm...

I wasn't meaning for how to get IDEAS but rather HOW to STAY focused. I have ideas...I just don't have the ability to focus for very long. I do have someone who makes me write every week (i have a 2-3 week limit for every page), but every time I set myself down to write I get very antsy and don't want to be sitting down anymore (there's something wrong with my heart at the moment so i can't just go for a jog if anyone thinks of suggesting that).

I don't agree with turning the internet off since I use it to find facts (IE: Prisoner Transfer Protocols, locations of prisons with high security, etc. etc.) to base my story off of (not like I'm going to carry a giant encyclopedia with me everywhere).

Also listening to music I don't like only makes my muscles/ears hurt/gives me a head ache and me antsy/grumpy more.

[quote="goldenspines (post: 1459973)"]I'm no expert writer, and not really a constant one either, but whenever I do write (or draw, which I do more often) I tend to use music to my advantage and pick a song (or a play list) that fits with what I'm creating and helps stimulate my ideas for my story/drawing. So instead of using music as a distraction, I use it as a way to get back on track with my project. :3 I suppose you could do this with a lot of things around you. Take them and relate them to your story/project.
In a nutshell, draw as much inspiration from everything as you can and there won't be any distractions. XD]

Yes, mood music. My friend IRL, who's also the one who pushes me to write, believes instrumental music is best for keeping focused. It does help the creative juices to flow, but since I lack this certain genre of music, I'm sometimes left to look for the other moods of music (needing mostly sinister sounding things or high energy for when people are on the run) on YouTube, Pandora or things alike so i can get back into that flow...BUT ONCE I DO...OH MAN...I'M A GONER.

I totally agree with you on the whole "think of it as fun time instead of work." I can't say how many times I do this unintentionally, but once I do I start to over think it (like everything else I do) and start thinking about how I eventually want this to end up as a career and then my brain categorizes it as work. How do you stop from over thinking?

I SHALL NOT BE AFRAID! ( *A*)9 lol I try to write everyday, but it doesn't always go as planned. Again, I totally do the whole, "FOCUS NOW!" I don't know how to stop doing that. D:





Thanks for the quick replies everyone. :) You're making me think of solutions even on my own LOL BUT IT'S HARD.
[color="DarkOrange"]"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things... hey... the good things don't always soften the bad things; but vice-versa the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things and make them unimportant." -11th Doctor

"The advice I like to give young artists, or really anybody who’ll listen to me, is not to wait around for inspiration. Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part and a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you. If you’re sitting around trying to dream up a great art idea, you can sit there a long time before anything happens. But if you just get to work, something will occur to you and something else will occur to you and something else that you reject will push you in another direction. Inspiration is absolutely unnecessary and somehow deceptive. You feel like you need this great idea before you can get down to work, and I find that’s almost never the case." - Chuck Close[/color]
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Postby DangoDaikazoku » Tue Feb 22, 2011 10:26 pm

Whenever I write I only put on a gigantic playlist (so I don't spend all my time looking up songs) with no lyrics (lyrics make me want to sing, a anime soundtrack normally works, plus is insparational). Yeah, spend a day making a giant playlist and save it (like that new youtube quene thing.) I also clear my head a bit with prayer, and writting a vauge idea out of paper first, that way when you go to write the real deal it flows alot easier. I often use a reward system to restrain my easily distracted mind, such as "You can read another manga chapter after you finish writing this page!" Although you might not want to take advise from me, a procrastinator at all that is homwork. Take now for an example... Yeah, the whole catagorizing it as work thing... just remind yourself you decided to do this, you wanted to do this, most likely cause you have a passion. Your passion isn't the same as "work". If it's not your passion... Your in for it. Yeah, I thought this page might help with my distraction problems a bit... not so much... seems were in the same boat here, and were sinking, fast...
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Postby firestorm » Wed Feb 23, 2011 9:18 am

One thing I'd like to add is that you shouldn't just force yourself to sit down and think to write. What I mean is most of the time we get inspired and come up with our best Ideas when we're relaxed. If you just sit and force yourself too hard to write it won't come out right. When your relaxed and content it just kind of flows out of you. Not to sound weird but a majority of my best ideas have come to me when I'm taking a shower, which is when I'm most relaxed. So if your having a hard time writing, take a break, relax, do something you love and come back to it. You'll find that you'll write alot better that way and be more focused because of it.
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Postby c.t.,girl » Wed Feb 23, 2011 2:26 pm

@DangoDaikazoku
i like the playlist idea...didn't even think about a youtube playlist. good thinking!

@firestorm
yeah...i'm thinking that's probably the best time too...thank. :)
[color="DarkOrange"]"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things... hey... the good things don't always soften the bad things; but vice-versa the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things and make them unimportant." -11th Doctor

"The advice I like to give young artists, or really anybody who’ll listen to me, is not to wait around for inspiration. Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part and a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you. If you’re sitting around trying to dream up a great art idea, you can sit there a long time before anything happens. But if you just get to work, something will occur to you and something else will occur to you and something else that you reject will push you in another direction. Inspiration is absolutely unnecessary and somehow deceptive. You feel like you need this great idea before you can get down to work, and I find that’s almost never the case." - Chuck Close[/color]
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Postby FllMtl Novelist » Wed Feb 23, 2011 6:07 pm

I meant to reply again a while ago... whoops. ^^;;
c.t.,girl (post: 1459989) wrote:So you guys know what TYPE of stories: Fiction/Mystery/Thriller



Hm...

I wasn't meaning for how to get IDEAS but rather HOW to STAY focused. I have ideas...I just don't have the ability to focus for very long. I do have someone who makes me write every week (i have a 2-3 week limit for every page), but every time I set myself down to write I get very antsy and don't want to be sitting down anymore (there's something wrong with my heart at the moment so i can't just go for a jog if anyone thinks of suggesting that).

I knew your concern wasn't for getting ideas, but you expressed that you tended to get distracted. I meant to suggest writing something that doesn't neccessarily relate to your main plot because I figured that would be easier and more fun. That's all. ^^
I don't agree with turning the internet off since I use it to find facts (IE: Prisoner Transfer Protocols, locations of prisons with high security, etc. etc.) to base my story off of (not like I'm going to carry a giant encyclopedia with me everywhere).

Okay, that makes sense. If you can keep focused on just the facts you need, then I'd think that would work fine. My problem tends to be when I decide I'm going to write, and I check CAA... and my email... and then I start chatting... and next thing I know it's been like an hour since I sat down. XD
Also listening to music I don't like only makes my muscles/ears hurt/gives me a head ache and me antsy/grumpy more.

I'm not sure how that works, but alright.

Hmm, I can't think of any other tips right now, it looks like everyone else have good ideas. Best of luck to you! ^^
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