Amusement Anyone else have this problem?

What’s your book called again?

Are Writers Attractive?

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Nikky Lee

Nikky Lee
Full Member
Jul 27, 2018
New Zealand
Me: OK, I’m going to buckle down and finish this story.
New shiny idea: *pops into field of vision* Hello! I’m new here! What you working on?
Me: A project. Now shoo, I need to finish—
New shiny idea: Ew, that looks too much like work. Come play with me instead!
Me: No, I’ve got a deadline.
New shiny idea: *batts eyelashes* But I’m here!
Me: *Ignores. Starts typing.*
New shiny idea: Come on. You know you want to.
Me: *Ignores. Keeps typing*
New shiny idea: *Leans in, whispers* “Write me. Write me now.”
Me: No! Go away! *Puts headphones on, turns up volume*
New shiny idea: Don’t be like that. Hey, are you listening?
Me: *Is not listening*
New shiny idea: Hey, don’t do that! Look at me when I’m talking to you.
Me: *Ignores*
New shiny idea: LOOK. AT. ME.
Me: *Looks*
New shiny idea: *Shimmies*

All . the . time .
Strategy: pick a doc to unload a para or short scene, then put it away.
Understanding that came after it happened several times in the same spot in the ms:

There's something missing, and the brain is trying to tell me to go back, go back, go back to see what was missed, why this section would rather try to find a new love than focus on this one -- because something is missing!

It's usually a place where the plot and character don't gel, or won't gel, and the writer just wants to keep moving. By stopping and re-organising, sometimes the hill is overcome with understanding, and sometimes ... well, we just gotta jot down the ideas until the one that breaks the back of the seduction and finds the path out of the mire of the WIP.

If that doesn't make sense, trust me, it will. Eventually.
These disruptions are a sign from the story (WIP) that all is not going to end well if the writer (!) persists in trying to tie me (the character) to something that doesn't belong, or won't work. The character strategy is to distract until ...
I'm a big fan of Google Keep (aka Google sticky notes). I usually jot the bones of the idea down there. This latest instance I wasn't working on anything creative, I was proofing a data science report (yes, it is as un-riviting as it sounds, I think my brain was looking for an escape).
You need to tame that New Shiny Idea. Put a leash on it so it stays where it belongs, but also doesn't get away.

I maintain a notebook of ideas. New story concepts, planned novels, even unused titles and character sketches go in here. If I get a set piece pop, fully-formed, into my head, I'll dot point it out so it's on paper. My mind can then put it aside, knowing I'm not going to forget the details and can go back to it later, when I'm ready. I find that this scratches the itch enough that I can go back to what I need to be doing, rather than what I want to be doing.

Ideas are like dreams. If you don't write them down, they'll evaporate by morning.
I don't get ideas for new stories which is something that bothers me. What am I going to write once the WIP is done? However, I get lots of ideas popping up for the characters in the WIP and usually, they are good ones so I cannot resist pursuing them immediately which makes me wonder if I'll ever finish the current book. I hate waking in the morning not being able to remember the brilliant idea I had as I dozed off.
I do regularly come up with new ideas, but I'm quite disciplined and won't start writing anything new until I've finished what I'm working on.

Usually when I have a new idea I'll bounce it around in my head (often when I'm walking the dog or driving) and then if It feels like it has legs I'll jot it down in a notebook and come back to it later.
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What’s your book called again?

Are Writers Attractive?