Writing and Distractions

posted in: Blogging, Humor, Writing 99 comments

Quote about distraction

It’s Monday morning, I need to write my blog post!

Okay: one at school, the other is napping. Perfect. Let’s start.

Wait, need a cup of tea.

Mug, water boiling, tea bag. Pour water. Brew.

Huh, empty coffee cup in the sink. Wash.

Wait, need to refill dishwasher liquid.

Okay. Done. Gah, need to take the recycling out.

Alright, tea.

Ooh, chocolate swirl bun. Would be nice if it was warmed up.

Ugh, why is the microwave so filthy? Need. To. Clean.

Okay. Bun. Warmed up. Yum.

Damn it, my tea is cold.

Warm up in clean microwave.

Sit down at desk. At last.

What to write about? Look up from laptop (mistake).

There are 256 plastic balls floating around the floor and play mat. WTF.

Fucking plastic balls.

Pick up balls. Take approximately a gazillion minutes and much bending, scooting on floor and stretching fingers to reach balls in many places (read that sentence however you like).

Okay, balls back in basket (also read this however you like).

What’s that? Crumbs. Of course.

Screw the crumbs. Vacuuming will wake up the child.

Sit down at desk. Start obsessing about crumbs.

Ooh, blog post idea.

Sip tea. TEA IS COLD.

Nuke tea in microwave.

Back at desk. Chocolate swirl bun is no longer warm. Eat it anyway.

Drink tea.

Remember leftover chocolate filling after baking chocolate swirl bun yesterday.

Click on Pinterest and search for chocolate desserts.

Pin. Pin. Pin.

Find new food blog – score!

Scroll through 30 pages of recipes. Pin. Pin. Pin.

Dude, over 5,000 Pins.

Oh wait, blog post. Right.

Forget blog post idea.

Start writing about writing a blog post.

And….. the baby’s awake.

What are your distractions?ย 

Speaking of being distracted, care to spend a minute or two on my recipe post at Everyday Family? I am sharing a recipe on apple biscuits, which was so yummy, my husband ate half. Not even kidding. Thank you!

Alison Lee is a former PR and marketing professional turned work-at-home mother. After a 10-year career in various PR agencies, and of the worldโ€™s biggest sports brands, Alison traded in product launches and world travel, for sippy cups, diapers, and breastfeeding. Alison's writing has been featured on Mamalode, On Parenting at The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, Everyday Family, Scary Mommy, and DrGreene.com. She is one of 35 essayists in the anthology, My Other Ex: Womenโ€™s True Stories of Leaving and Losing Friends. In 2012, she founded Little Love Media, a social media consultancy specializing in blog book tours, and because she doesnโ€™t sleep, is an editor at BonBon Break, an online magazine. Alison lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with her husband and four children (two boys and boy/ girl twins).

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  • May 13, 2013 Jessica

    Oh I can relate to this! Always something to do around the house.
    Jessica recently wrote…[39/365] GiftsMy Profile

    • May 13, 2013 Alison

      It’s never ending. Especially picking up plastic balls. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 13, 2013 AlwaysARedhead

    Why I stay away from Pinterest.
    AlwaysARedhead recently wrote…Chronic pain is ruining my make-upMy Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      You’re wiser than me!

  • May 13, 2013 Maureen

    Hahahaa and I feel like I want to grab those delicious tempting looking pins of yours and devour them ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Maureen recently wrote…We Are A FamilyMy Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Virtual eating = no calories = win!

  • May 13, 2013 Jessica

    And that’s what happens when mom wants a cup of tea.
    Jessica recently wrote…3 Michael Pollan Books You Need To ReadMy Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Right? Darn tea.

  • May 13, 2013 Katie

    I totally know what this is like! I wish I had more of an attention span- and that nap time was longer. . .
    Katie recently wrote…Getting Over the HumpMy Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      The baby naps for 45-90 minutes. Would be awesome if it’s at least an hour ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 13, 2013 vanita

    sit at desk, put down coffee mug.
    need to log into client’s site, head into email to grab password.
    oooh! new post from Alison…
    now this post was really timely. hahaha.
    hubby and i discovered there’s a private school not far, we’re thinking of sending damian their for kindergarten. they also offer free half day for 4 year olds which will be perfect for Tash. hubby says, look, you’ll have more time for work. all i’m thinking is, take damian and tash to school, walk back home, 2.5 hours later leave to pick up tash, bring her home, undress her, give her lunch, have her take a nap, 3 hours later, wake tash up, dress her again, walk back to school to pick up damian, bring them both home, undress them both, give them snacks, start cooking dinner…how exactly will i have more time to work?
    vanita recently wrote…Bounce Rate Defined Series: Increase Blog SpeedMy Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Gosh, I want to take a nap after reading that. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 13, 2013 Ilene

    Oh, This could be me! Mt distractions: social media, email, what the kids are doing in the other room, my coffee going cold on me, and needing to eat chocolate. Sound familiar?????
    Ilene recently wrote…Use Your WordsMy Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Hah! #SameLife

  • May 13, 2013 Susanna Leonard Hill

    I can totally relate, Alison! Everything is easier than writing, so pretty much anything can qualify as a distraction! Especially things that FEEL like productive work – such as reading and commenting on blogs, and reading articles about the craft of writing ๐Ÿ™‚
    Susanna Leonard Hill recently wrote…Vote For You Favorite Jingle! – And Your Favorite Kids Entry!My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Oh yes, I do get distracted by blog reading too ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 13, 2013 Tricia

    Oh my goodness yes. Sometimes I feel like I’ll look for any excuse to not sit down and write. I once had a coworker who likened this sort of wandering and seeming avoidance to cows making milk. Cows wander (or lay) around all day and look as though they aren’t doing anything. But quietly and without us noticing, they are always working and making milk. So as we bustle about and do other things, we’re also working things out in our heads. It’s not always true but makes me feel better ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Tricia recently wrote…“I’m a Mommy Too” (Happy Mother’s Day)My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      I’m a cow! I’m a cow! (my husband thinks I’m nuts) ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Plastic balls can be extremely distracting or mess in general.
    Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes recently wrote…Vexation and revenge (and hoping for flowersโ€ฆ)My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Yes, especially for a neat freak like me ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 13, 2013 Kimberly

    Always legos.
    And napping.
    Kimberly recently wrote…Home?My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      What’s a nap?

  • May 13, 2013 seventiesbaby

    Love this and TOTALLY relate. It’s why I struggle working from home. For me it’s the ‘I must make the most of my time at all times’ affliction which turns out to be very inefficient indeed. For example. Before I start ‘work’ I must decide on dinner and then defrost any meat that may be frozen in the microwave. While defrosting, I must put on a load of washing and/or hang out an existing load. If meat already defrosted, I must put in the oven/slow cooker to cook. God forbid I sit down to write, work, make calls without another electric appliance also working at the same time. That just wouldn’t be productive now would it? PS: I hate those fucking plastic balls too ๐Ÿ˜‰
    seventiesbaby recently wrote…What does a mum look like?My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Hah!! We’re like the same person.

  • May 13, 2013 Kim

    This sounds very familiar! That perfect window for writing is an illusive thing – I catch a glimpse of it sometimes. But then something usually pops up and then I realize that the seemingly perfect moment was a mirage.
    Kim recently wrote…Songs of MotherhoodMy Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      It is totally a mirage around these parts. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 13, 2013 Susi

    Sounds very familiar. Between things to be done around the house (Is that the dryer I hear?) and Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest etc. I often get distracted and completely forget what it is I wanted to write/share!
    Susi recently wrote…134/365 (May 12)My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Social media is SO distracting! (as is electrical appliances)

  • May 13, 2013 Julia\'s Math

    It’s like we are twins! My poor daughter gets the worst of it- yes, Mommy will be right there… Shoes in the way, put in closet. Clothes off hangers, re hang. Yes, mommy is coming! Turn around, bed not made. Make bed. Hold on Mommy is coming! And so and so forth.
    Julia\’s Math recently wrote…A Few Thoughts On MotherhoodMy Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Hah! Hello twin!

  • May 13, 2013 Tamara

    I’m so distractible and obsessive that I actually have post-it notes that tell me what I can do IN ORDER, so long as I edit between one to five photos. Then I get “rewarded” with blog reading and commenting, pinning, tweeting, etc.

    All this while two kids need me constantly. So productive we are in the long run! It’s a miracle.
    Tamara recently wrote…Rainbows For Mother’s Day.My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      That’s a good idea – a reward chart for adults!!

      When the kids are awake and around, I have no chance of doing any writing. At all.

  • May 13, 2013 Greta

    I can’t even begin to list the distractions….I’m too tired from avoiding my blog post. ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Greta recently wrote…Project 365 (Week 19)My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Hah! Good one, Greta. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 14, 2013 Mommyproof

    Laughing out loud. This is me well, every day. I have to write outside of my house a lot of the time to get anything done. (Not like, outside outside. Just elsewhere. like starbucks. xox)
    Mommyproof recently wrote…Of course my driving sucks, Officer. Thereโ€™s a toddler in the backseat.My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      I get to leave the house and be by myself for a couple of hours every Sunday. It’s the only time I can think clearly, so I sneak off to a cafe, grab a coffee, and work. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 14, 2013 Kim Green

    Oh, YES!

    This is so TRUE and funny and honest and perfectly-timed! This is me sometimes… and then all of a sudden it’s about three a.m. and then I spend another 30 minutes working out the pros and cons of just staying up all night in my head and then by the time I have it all figured out I’ve stayed up all night.

    I love this, Alison!

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      Oh gosh, 3 am?? Crazy girl. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 14, 2013 keely

    YES. For real. Although, I’m pretty sure you could’ve just written a whole blog about the chocolate swirl bun and I would’ve been hooked. (And inspired to pin.)
    keely recently wrote…Mother’s Day Rocks My Face Off.My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      About how chocolatey and not-very-swirly-but-still-oh-so-yummy? Oh yes, I could.
      Now, hungry.

  • May 14, 2013 Jessica Smock

    I can definitely relate, but I would say that there’s been a huge change in my writing productivity since becoming a mom. Before my son was born, I would be writing — or trying to write — my dissertation or whatever and I would procrastinate whole-heartedly. (Oh, the dog looks like he needs a run! Oh, it’s 3 p.m.: time to look through cookbooks to plan out dinner! Oh, maybe the library has some new books in!) Now, I know that if I don’t write it NOW, there’s a huge possibility that I won’t be able to write later.
    Jessica Smock recently wrote…Guest Post: What’s Wrong With a Campaign To End Mom Bullying?My Profile

    • May 16, 2013 Alison

      I know what you mean – when you have huge chunks of time, you’re less appreciative of the small windows of opportunity, that moms get. I should know this. Yet. I am distracted. Constantly.

  • May 14, 2013 Bev

    E-mail is my downfall. I still need to keep reminding myself to shut that tab…along with the 20 other tabs I seem to have open at any given time. Great post, could definitely identify!
    Bev recently wrote…Why Yes, I Made These: My Cambridge Open Studios ExperienceMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      I ALWAYS have lots of tabs open!

  • May 14, 2013 JDaniel4's Mom

    This happens to me all the time. There are just some many things that need to get done.
    JDaniel4’s Mom recently wrote…Father’s Day Breakfast- Cereal TieMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      There’s always something that needs to be done.

  • May 14, 2013 tracy

    You distract me, cuz you are so cute, talented, funny and my sister-wife. xoxo
    tracy recently wrote…A Summer Trip To Mall Of Americaโ„ข and a Giveaway!My Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Hee!! Love you!!

  • May 14, 2013 Jennifer

    These days I can’t even seem to get to the part where I sit down to write a blog post.
    Jennifer recently wrote…Have you considered Invisalign?My Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Ugh, that’s hard. ๐Ÿ™

  • May 14, 2013 The Dose of Reality

    Social media gets me, too, but I have to say my biggest distraction is getting ideas for other things on my to-do list. Somewhere in the back of my mind all the other things I need to do are listed and I think “Oh, I should also order contacts when I call to reschedule that eye doctor appointment later”. So I right that down. When I get back to writing, another thing will pop up like, “I should call Gretchen to see if she can change carpool days with me next Tuesday so I’m not so rushed after the school play”. Before you know it, I’ve got a list here and I’ve made 3 phone calls…but I’ve only got 20 words written in the post that’s going up the next day. ARRGGHH!! –Lisa
    The Dose of Reality recently wrote…We’re An American Band…or ARE We?My Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Hah! I know, from task to task to task!

  • May 14, 2013 Tamara Woods

    I’ve been visiting my Mom, and it’s been filled with distraction after distraction. New and varied. Since I live across the ocean and haven’t seen her in a year, I forgot what it was like here. I’m not sure how it I made it through high school living here.
    Tamara Woods recently wrote…Good Samaritans having an ear to listenMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      It’s okay, you’re on vacation! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 14, 2013 Kathy Radigan

    Alison I so relate to this post!! I have been feeling like this since I started to go back to weekly posting. There always seems to be something much more “important”, (I love how you clean your microwave and get focused on the chocolate) to draw my attention away from the computer and my writing. Thanks for making me less alone! I love your writing!
    Kathy Radigan recently wrote…When the Whole Wide World is Fast AsleepMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Thank you, Kathy! Hence the late nights, right?

  • May 14, 2013 Leslie

    Oh, how I could have written this! The worst is getting distracted from your distractionsโ€ฆand then suddenly two hours has gone by and you havenโ€™t done what you need to do! Such a fun post!
    Leslie recently wrote…{Recipes} Chocolate PhantasmagoriaMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Yes, exactly! Distracted by distractions. Such a cycle.

  • May 14, 2013 Elaine A.

    I have to close FB when I’m writing, otherwise a post takes me 3 times as long… oy.

    This is so cute and TRUE!!

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Closing Facebook – good move. Need to do that.

      Eh, who am I kidding? ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 14, 2013 Michelle

    My distractions? The kids, the animals, twitter…the fact that I need to clean up the house!

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      How do we ever get anything done?

  • May 14, 2013 angela

    Mainly the kids! One of them is always here, and neither of them nap. When I’m on my own, I am distracted by similar things — make coffee, wipe counter, empty dishwasher, heat up coffee, look at lists, organize, etc. Ugh.

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      I can’t imagine when even one gives up his nap. I will NEVER get anything done then!

  • May 14, 2013 Christine

    hahaha. This.Is.My.Life. I have the attention span of a gnat these days. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Christine recently wrote…Why I won’t give up beerMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Right?? Ooh, shiny object.

  • May 14, 2013 Julia

    Hmm pastries are always a distraction, followed by cleaning and Pinterest… this post is the story of my life, lol
    Julia recently wrote…Blog Pop CultureMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Damn Pinterest!

  • May 14, 2013 Barb

    ha ha ha that gave me a good laugh, now for my cup of tea……sounds familiar, I have Mad Mommy Mondays – frequently… go figure.
    Barb recently wrote…Early Monday – Word of the WeekMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      It’s Mad around here daily!

  • May 14, 2013 sarah

    haha, I was smiling all through this post ๐Ÿ˜€ I heat my tea up a bajillion times too. Sometimes it’s like I wish there were glue in the seat so I’d just sit down and stay ๐Ÿ™‚
    sarah recently wrote…Seek it. Find it. Make it. Gus.My Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      That’s a good idea!
      (but Pinterest, will still get distracted by Pinterest)

  • Sigh, I wish I had a baby to blame it on, but actually today is interrupted by going to warehouse store to buy muffins to sell at the crack off dawn at the high school. Seriously considering just forking over $100 to the fund, calling it a day, and getting to sleep until 6:30 AM tomorrow.

    BTW, checked our pins before commenting – 6,069. Is that a problem?
    Sisterhood of the Sensible Moms recently wrote…If Moms Formed Rock BandsMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Yes, yes, it’s a problem. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 15, 2013 My Inner Chick

    I get it. Totally.
    My distraction is everything else!
    My Inner Chick recently wrote…Incident at Gatwick AirportMy Profile

  • May 15, 2013 Marta

    THE INTERNET. I had to install a google chrome extension called strict pomdoro to make me work and not get distracted by the nine million tabs I have open. It really is a problem!
    Marta recently wrote…Motherhood Is.My Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Ooh, I might need it.
      Oh, but Pinterest….

  • May 15, 2013 Kim

    My distractions are usually Facebook, my own inability to sit still, a demanding cat and texting my husband. I have issues. Haha.

    On a side note, I have a blog post I’m working on that is similar to this topic and written in the same format. Should be interesting once I get it finished.
    Kim recently wrote…Scratching the Road Trip ItchMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Did you get undistracted long enough to finish that post? ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 15, 2013 Amanda Jillian

    Too many to count. And I just got one back lol.
    Amanda Jillian recently wrote…Eyes of a Mermaid {Daily Mermaid}My Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Too many, certainly. In my case, too many freaking plastic balls. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 15, 2013 Bon Bon

    yep. nailed it!:-) xoxo

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      ๐Ÿ™‚ Thank you.

  • May 15, 2013 Natalie

    That sounds exactly what happens in my brain!!!
    Natalie recently wrote…Oh Monday…My Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      I’m lucky I don’t have 2 dogs like you do, I’ll never even get to Pinterest if I did. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 16, 2013 Jennifer

    Ha! I am sooo glad this happens to others besides me, and it’s always Pinterest!! I am totally addicted to that siteโ€ฆin fact, I am heading over there now…

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Hey, fellow Pinterester!

  • May 17, 2013 Lady Jennie

    This made me giggle. It was a great blog post!

    I wish I were so disciplined to clean everything before I sat down, but I am the opposite. I’ll sit down completely surrounded by junk!
    Lady Jennie recently wrote…What’s Really Going OnMy Profile

    • May 17, 2013 Alison

      Clean house, clear mind.
      At least, that’s the goal. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 18, 2013 Mothering From Scratch

    {Melinda} I’m no own worst enemy, too! My problem is that I have 200 things on my to-do list and I can’t put those mentally aside while I try to write. AAAAH!
    Mothering From Scratch recently wrote…simple desires of tired momsMy Profile

    • May 18, 2013 Alison

      Darn to-do-lists!

  • May 18, 2013 Vicki M. Taylor

    You have an amazing writing voice. I’d love if it you’d visit “Your Writing Coach” and think about writing a guest post. Would you be interested? Followed you from SITS. Have a blessed day!
    Vicki M. Taylor recently wrote…Friday Five Minute Exercise – UniquenessMy Profile

    • May 18, 2013 Alison

      Thank you so much, Vicki! I don’t do many guest posts these days (time limits), but I’ll visit your site, for sure!

  • May 18, 2013 Cindy

    That sounds like me when I’ve got PhD work to be getting on with. Everything is a distraction!
    Cindy recently wrote…Weekly workout wrapupMy Profile

    • May 20, 2013 Alison

      My sister did a PhD – she was constantly distracted from *that*. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • May 20, 2013 Katie

    Girl, my LIFE is my distraction. I hope to blog in one sitting again…um…yeah I don’t know when. For the first time in my bloggy LIFE I have more “drafts” than I can keep up with. I have gone down to posting 3ish times a week and it’s almost TOO much right now to keep up with.

    I blame my job.

    Because I don’t want to blame the boys that live in this house.

    yet. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Katie recently wrote…Project 365 {week 20}My Profile

    • May 20, 2013 Alison

      Your job is almost never ending is it? My sister is a teacher, and she has to take work home because she has to lesson plan, mark papers, prepare exam papers etc etc. You teachers are amazing.

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Alison Profile PictureI'm Alison. Writer, a mother of four (two boys and boy/ girl twins), social media enthusiast and book lover. A believer in the power of chocolate and hugs. Chugging coffee as I type. Want to know more?

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