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Focus: The Bane of my Writing

I am working on three novels at once. The other is a prequel to one of the novels, written as a collection of short stories. There’s also the Friday Fiction, a number of side novellas, and Wattpad writing competitions. There are also books to read, games to play, social events to attend, and the elusive activity known as sleep.

There’s also a folder full of ideas and stories that have been bubbling since I was in highschool. I have been craving a good horror story and since I haven’t found one, I’ve resorted to that age old writer’s quote “If the book you want to read doesn’t exist, write it.”

All of these have made me aware of something I struggle with when it comes to my writing… focus.

One Story at a Time

You might think this is easy to do. Take one novel  (or idea), write it, edit it, send it off to the publishers and work on the next one while you wait. In truth, it should be. Fortunately/Unfortunately my mind is a single bee in a gargantuan field of flowers. Buzzing with activity. Jumping from one flower to the next to the next to the next. Never satisfied with just the one. Seeing all the potential. All the benefits to reap.

Hence why I’m writing four novels at once. This is my attempt at appeasing my restless mind while being productive. The novels are all different genres, different worlds, and different characters. Each week I focus on one novel. Of course, I end up getting ideas for “that other” novel, or ideas for a new story and have to battle against writing them.

The Solution

I write everything down. I have a multiple notepad .txt files with ideas. Each in their appropriate folders. I don’t want to lose the idea. I also write what I was feeling and what I was trying to achieve with the story. This means I have a reference point to the me now, with the fresh idea as it is now. The me today, won’t be the me next month (or next year) when I revisit the idea and realise I have no idea where I was trying to go with it.

It doesn’t always work. I spend too much time in my head thinking of what I want to do next instead of just doing it. Sometimes all it needs is discipline. And sitting down to write. I’ll keep working on it, and writing.


Do you struggle with focusing on your current WIP? How do you keep writing one story down without losing interest? What inspires to keep going?

 

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About Nthato Morakabi

Nthato Morakabi is a South African born published author working as a Junior Technical Writer for Everlytic and a freelance writer for Gamecca Magazine. He has published his short stories both internationally, and locally, hoping to publish a novel in the near future. He is an avid read, inspired blogger, and an aspiring digital artist.

14 responses »

  1. This sounds very familiar! I have 3 novel ideas fighting for my attention just now and I’m trying desperately to focus on one and make notes as they arise for the other two. They need time to incubate after all. Unfortunately there are times when the words aren’t forthcoming for the one I’ve chosen, and the others push their way in with flowing sentences…

    I find that writing flash fiction on my blog is good as a ‘quick fix’ for my wandering imagination, but more ideas always come to fill their place.

    Reply
    • Haha well I’m somewhat glad I am not the only one who struggles with this. Oh the joys of being a writer.

      Yes flash fiction has also been a good ‘quick fix’ but sometimes those pieces demand to be explored and expounded and then… I’m back to square one.

      Thank you for sharing this with me, and hope all goes well with your writing!

      Reply
  2. Three? Dear god I’d have lost my mind!!! Well. Hehe.

    Reply
  3. I hear ya. I too am writing four novels at once at the moment. As much as I would love to give my undivided attention to just one story, for now, my mind doesn’t work like that. And that’s not a bad thing. It keeps you creative and you don’t get burnt out so easily on the one story.

    Reply
  4. Having more than one project going gives me options when one piece sags. I love flash fiction for that reason too.

    Reply
  5. You young writers are wearing me out just reading about your multi-tasking, and yet with my reading, my blogging, etc. I do the same thing.

    Reply

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