10 Sensible Ways to Avoid Distractions


It’s very easy to get distracted. For example, I was going to write this piece earlier, got distracted by a reflective surface, and spent the next 37 minutes contemplating the majesty of my facial bush.

As a writer, distraction is the enemy. An enemy with an alluring caboose that you can’t help but follow as it wiggles across the room. So what can you do to make sure that you don’t succumb and actually GET SOME WRITING DONE?

Here are ten top tips. If these don’t work, then there ain’t no hope for you.

1)  A punch to the nuts every time you take your fingers off the keyboard. If you’re  a woman (some people are) do what you feel best approximates a nut-punch. Boob punch? Run ovary-first into the corner of a table? Up to you, have fun with it.

2)  Didn’t make your word count for the day? Stare at the sun, without blinking, until your eyes shrivel to raisins and a crow nibbles them free of your skull.

3)  Train a tiger to maul you to death each time you try to move away from your laptop (what about pee breaks?! Pee breaks are for people who finish drafts. NO PEE BREAKS FOR YOU!).

4)  Enjoy drinking a strangers urine? If the answer is ‘no’, go to your nearest public toilets with the container of your choice. Scoop it across a urinal trough, or wipe an absorbent cloth across the floor and squeeze the collected yellow dampness into the container. Take a sip each time you get distracted (if you answered ‘yes’, do the same, but as a treat for each hour of uninterrupted writing. You’re a winner!).

5)  Spent the last twenty minutes staring into space? Lick a just boiled kettle.

6)  Somehow (I don’t know how, I’m just the ideas man) have your laptop set up so the browsing history will be emailed to everyone you’ve ever met if you don’t write a minimum of 2000 words per hour.

7)  *gets distracted looking at pugs dressed like superheroes*

8)  Every third time you step away from your laptop, eat an apple fashioned from horse poop (make sure you have a minimum of six fresh, steaming horse poop apples ready to go each morning).

9)  That deadline you set yourself now so far in the past it’s  hanging out with *insert well-known 80s pop culture icon here* ? Go on Twitter and Facebook  and declare that Perhaps Hitler was right after all. Post the same message 93 times. Do not respond to any replies. Bury laptop and mobile phone at sea. Simple ceremony, nothing too grand. Start new life as a bare-knuckle boxer known only as ‘Johnny Fat Fists.’

10)  Avoid the temptation to write useless website posts. No one cares about what you think, ya’ dummy!

I hope you’ve learned something in this post, I know I haven’t, and I look forward to hearing which of the above fool-proof methods worked best for you.

That’s it.


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