Where is Your Ideal Place to Write? Your Big Distractions?

One thing that I’ve noticed about writing, is that I sometimes need a particular place to write to get in the “zone.” On a good day, if I’m writing for about 8 hours, I can average 2,500 words per hour. Unfortunately, there are a few, physical distractions which either slow me down or suck my attention span away from writing and decrease my productivity. Television and other people (aka residual noise from neighbor kids, etc.) are two of those “physical” distractions.

Even if I’ve watched a movie a 1,000 times or can quote every line of Firefly, sometimes I’ll get sucked into my favorite parts of the show and whoosh! a half an hour goes by and I lost my train of thought. Other people can be distracting when a) I’m not expecting a screaming kid to come flying past our window or b) someone is super excited and they “have to just tell me that one thing.” (Okay, yeah I’m guilty of that.)

I’ve found that the first thing I need to do when setting aside or picking a space for me to write in, is to have a somewhat “closed” environment. An “open” environment is way too distracting for me because of all that residual noise, interruptions, or tendency to interrupt other people when an idea hits me. A “closed” environment like a desk in a small office that we’re beginning to create upstairs, putting on headphones, finding a quiet coffee shop, etc. definitely helps me increase my productivity and sends a signal to my writer’s brain that “Hey, writer! This is the time to sit down, shut up and write!”

So the first step in achieving my NaNoWriMo goal this year will be to set aside spaces for me to write. As I mentioned earlier, we’re creating an office (aka creative space) upstairs that somehow has to coincide with the Halloween party we’re having. There are a few places in town that I enjoy writing at depending upon whether or not I “need” wi-fi service, but the internet can be its own distraction. More on that tomorrow.

What about you? Where do you enjoy writing and what are your big distractions?



Monica Valentinelli is a writer, editor, and game developer. Her portfolio includes stories, games, comics, essays, and pop culture books.

In addition to her own worlds, she has worked on a number of different properties including Firefly, Vampire: the Masquerade, Shadowrun, Hunter: the Vigil, Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn, and Robert E. Howard’s Conan.

Looking for Monica’s books and games that are still in print? Visit Monica Valentinelli on Amazon’s Author Central or a bookstore and game store near you.

Want to Interview or Hire Me? Send Fan Mail?

Would you like to hire me? Because my projects and manuscripts are in flux, I am always open to discussing new opportunities with publishers and studios. As a full-time writer, I spend a portion of my time seeking new gigs–so don’t be afraid to reach out. If you’re interested, please e-mail me via my Contact Page. I typically reply to work-related e-mails within one-to-two business days.

Want an interview? If you’d like to interview me or request a guest blog post, please connect with me via the contact page, too. Due to time constraints and other communicative concerns, I typically don’t follow up on requests via social media.

Keen on sending fan mail? I am also happy to engage with readers and fans. Please note that I am unable to reply satisfactorily to certain types of queries related to the companies I work for due to the agreements I typically sign. If you have a question about a TV show or a line of books, the best way to get your answer is to contact the studio or publisher directly.

Back to Top