Saturday, August 18, 2012

A Little Bit of Trouble Focusing

This week I tried to implement a plan to write at least an hour a day while my preschooler watches SpongeBob. 

Here's how it's going this morning - and I'm just writing this and responding to comments, no serious writing.  No hope of serious writing.

*  *   *   *   *   * 

SpongeBob is on (the Atlantis episode). 

My little guy:  "Hey!  Hey!  What's Encino?" while twisting my desk chair that I'm sitting in. 

Me:  "A place in California I think."

Him:  "Encino is where pirates live!" 

(Brief pause in the conversation while he watches the show.)

Him:  "Hey, Mom!  Hey, Mom!  There's Plankton!"

(Sits quietly while taking in Plankton's schenanigans.)

Him:  "All hail Plankton!  Mom, can I have bacon?"

(Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle commercial plays while son kicks my bed repeatedly.  Pause.  More kicking.)

(They changed the opening for a new episode.  It's claymation instead of animation.)

Him:  "Hey, they changed it!  Is this SpongeBob?  Where's SpongeBob under the sea?"

(Now he's holding onto my desk and doing round kicks into the drawer, not hard enough to hurt himself.  Now back on the bed.  It's animated again.  I can see him wiggling his feet off the side of my bed.)

*    *    *    *    *

Exhausting, isn't it?  So I haven't written anything.  I did read a chapter of the middle grade reader I wrote maybe two years ago.  I love the story and the characterization, but noticed immediately the point of view was a hot mess. 

(I just caught a glimpse of SpongeBob in utero on the TV.  My son found it fascinating too and is standing next to me to get a closer look.)

I think it's good I noticed the point of view is not good.  I know what I need to do to fix it.  A part of me wants to put it in a drawer or in the garbage.  But I wrote it for my kids, so I'm going to suck it up and put the time into it to make it an amazing story. 

Note to self to pay more attention to POV on the first draft.  Revisions to POV take too much work.  Better to get it right the first time.

My small person is hanging off my bed saying, "Help me!" pretending to need a rescue.  I think it's time to go outside and let him run.


  1. They grow up fast, so go with it. A little bit of time in our day for them, makes memories for them. They will remember a mom who made time for them. (I didn't believe this until after our kids had passed the fun stage of being preschoolers.)

    Grab those writing minutes when you can. They will add up.

    1. I think I'll just plan on writing in September. :)

  2. I remember those days. But now my older kids come in my office and want to hang out and talk. Gotta talk while they want to.

    1. I need time for myself too. Just a little.

  3. At first, it's aggravating, but after a few minutes, it's gratifying. Why? They grow up so fast and it's the moments they need us we will remember forever. Soon, they will be teenagers, then gone on to their own life. So love them while you can.
    As for stealing writing minutes, have considered skipping sleep?

    1. I did consider drinking coffee at 9 p.m. last night and just skipping a night's sleep. I'm not sure how the quality of writing would be during an all-nighter. I do better after my normal 5 hours sleep. :/

  4. My kids are older, but they will still come in and put on the TV and I'll get sucked into watching it with them. Which is why my best writing time is still after they go to bed (and my husband and dog, too).

  5. LOL, but at least you got something out of that hour - now you know you have POV work to do. So, did you have to stop and explain in utero?

  6. Hah, my kid used to do that "Help me!" thing when he was little, too. I think, although you may not have gotten through everything you'd wanted, you did make progress! Good for you! :-)

    PS: Also when he was little, I'd have to wait till he was properly sleeping before I could really write, which did make for not quite as much sleep as I'd have liked (or needed). But I tried to keep myself on a schedule of at least two hours' writing a night, which worked pretty well. Also, I recently read that working while just a wee bit tipsy led to higher productivity, so... ;-)
    Some Dark Romantic

  7. That's so funny! I remember those does make you focus when you do have some time, because you know it will be short!

  8. I'm always amazed at the writers who manage to get lotsa writing done while balancing kids and (for some) a part-time/full time job.
    I suppose it comes down to planning...

  9. Oh my... do that one times five. That's why I shoved my novel writing in a closet for 10 years. But I did a lot of journaling back then.

    Hugs and chocolate,

  10. You poor woman! At least your son sounds entertaining. I am sure you can find time for writing...someday. Just kidding! I am sure you will figure things out. Good luck with the rewrite.

  11. At least he's amusing! And you figured out the point of view thing.

  12. That morning routine you described made me a little tired. I need to go rest now.

    I agree that changing POV may be one of the most time-consuming changes. Been there, done that.