There is a reason that, before my surgery, my laptop did not have internet access.
My laptop was for writing, and writing only. If I wanted to get on the Internet, I'd have to go downstairs to our desktop computer. This was a good thing as it kept me from clicking on websites when I should have been writing.
But now that I have wireless on my laptop, I am finding it incredibly difficult to concentrate solely on my manuscript. I love checking out writing blogs and hanging out at the Facebook page of the blog, Writer Unboxed, where there's always a good conversation to be had. That's all well and good, but I need to write.
Yesterday, we had a lot of wind and it must have played havoc with the Internet as it wasn't available for several hours. I got a lot of writing done during that time, and I think it was God's way of putting His foot down where my writing procrastination was concerned.
All this is to say that I have shoddy will power. I knew that to begin with, which is why I didn't have Internet on the laptop in the first place.
While I can easily disable the Internet once my recovery is over, that's really not the point. I should be able to develop the will power to focus on my manuscript when I need to.
To that end, I've already developed a few strategies.
1. The Ten Minute Rule. I tell myself that I have to write for ten minutes. Just ten minutes of pure writing with no distractions. The ten minutes invariably turns into much longer. Once I get into the story, it's not as easy to get back out again.
2. No Open Windows. I close all open windows to the Internet. Sure, it's just one click to open them again, but that's one more step I have to take. It's just a simple mind trick, but it seems to work.
3. Good, Old-Fashioned Discipline. Sometimes, I just have to give myself a stern talk and make myself write.
These strategies don't always work, of course, and over the last several days, I've found myself flitting from one page to the next. But I do have to remind myself that I'm recovering. Sometimes I simply don't feel like writing. I don't have the concentration due to my pain medications or otherwise not feeling good. It's at those moments when I need to be kind to myself.
What about you? What are your distractions for writing when so many delicious goodies await on the Internet?