Thursday, 22 November 2012

Writing environments and distractions

The environment in which you work as a writer can have a very direct impact on how you work.  When you write, you need to focus.  Writing at home, where you feel safe and comfortable, should be ideal in many respects.  But at home there are usually external distractions, such as the phone ringing, and those we allow ourselves to be side-tracked by, such as checking emails and web surfing, if we have internet access. Or simply busying ourselves with housework and little jobs that need doing. 

Recently, I experienced working on my netbook in Caffe Nero for almost 3 hours, along with other writers, as part for a Nanowrimo Write-in.  This was surprisingly productive for me and something I plan to try again. My netbook doesn’t connect to the internet (a major distraction) and there are no phones ringing.  (Mobile is tucked into my bag).  The coffee grinder can be very loud but that just becomes background noise and helps you feel part of the world around you.

Today I sat in the car with my lappie running off the battery while my partner was at the osteopaths.  I had an hour to work and it was a great environment, apart from sun glare on the laptop screen.  I was really focussed, but still felt connected to the outside world. 

Which kind of environment do you find the most productive? 


  1. Glad you found the Write In productive :)

    I don't tend to write in coffee shops as much as I'd like to, I don't seem to be able to motivate myself enough. So if you ever fancy a writing session (after Nano) just shout! :)


  2. Thanks Vikki - that's a fab idea! We can do our own post Nano write-ins! And drink coffee and eat cake!