I have been asking writers about their biggest challenges in managing their daily lives and finding time to write. Their top answer: distractions.
So I thought that, in order to understand the problem, I would catalog every distraction known to writers. Then, in the post below, turn this into a guide. If you are a writer hoping to overcome distractions, all you need to do is simply memorize this list, and learn to avoid the key triggers that turn each of these items into distractions.
Okay, here goes. The Complete List of Creative Distractions and Defenses Against Them.
Distraction: Cat Videos
- Definition: Amazing, lovely, cute, wonderful cat videos. Is there anything more amaz…. No wait. They are evil, evil distractions. These perfect little cute… ACK! BAD! DISTRACTION!!!
- Defense: Become an evil soul with a heart of pure stone. That is the only way to avoid the majestic beauty of adorable, cute… ACK! STOP!!!!
Distraction: Real Cats and Dogs and other Pets
- Definition: In moments of weakness, we allow these wild creatures into our lives. One moment you are a writing machine, the next moment, you spend all of your time coddling this filthy, wild creature. “Oh, just a little more rubbing on the tummy… Oooooh yes, you are such a good puppy. Yes you are! Yes you are!” It’s sickening, really.
- Defense: Open the back door. When the animal leaves, close back door. Put in ear plugs and get back to writing.
- Definition: Remember when your parents trapped you into a concrete building for the first 18 years of your life? Then how you got back at them by wasting tens of thousands of dollars doing keg stands instead of going to class? Yes, that is the education I am talking about.
- Defense: Do I really care what year Isaac Newton invented gravity? Or how to properly subjugate an adjective in a paragraph? I mean, really? Education is a sham. A giant ruse developed by whichever political party you dislike the most. Education, in all its forms, should be avoided. Like the plaque.
- Definition: Dust bunnies. You can hear them calling, can’t you? They say, “Dust us! Collect us and deliver us to the afterworld of the magic dust bin!”
- Defense: For centuries, mankind has lived in filth. Sewers running through the streets, people bathing only monthly. I mean, the vacuum cleaner wasn’t even invented until 1860, meaning that most of human history was spent without them. Some of the greatest written work of all time was written specifically in the absence of the unrivaled suction power of a Dyson. Let’s face it, if A + B = C, there is no argument. A world without vacuum cleaners is a world where great writing thrives.