I don’t know about you, but I find life completely distracting. Just when I’ve planned to get a whole day’s writing done, life gets in the way. One of my kids gets sick, the goat gets its head stuck in the fence again or ‘paid’ work (known by some as the Evil Day Job) calls.
It’s life! It leaves me feeling frustrated, as if I’ve spent the whole day on the edge of my seat, waiting for something important that hasn’t happened yet.
These are usually the days I find myself writing into the wee small hours – immersing myself in my work after domestic harmony has been restored.
But it’s not always easy to get back into the story – to restore the mood – to get back into your character’s world and inside their head.
Here are my tips for burrowing your way back into your story. This is what I do:
1. Chat to my MC (Main Character). Ask them, what were you doing last time we ‘spoke’? How did you feel about that? What are you going to do now?
3. Read the last five pages I wrote so that I can set myself back in the scene.
4. Put myself back in the same physical space where I wrote last.
5. Remind myself of what excites me about this story.
6. Try to get myself back into the mood I was in when I last worked on the story. I use music and other sensory assistance to help me get back there.
7. Remind myself of the purpose of the story as a whole – What does my MC want, what is the obstacle stopping them from getting it, how are they going to overcome that obstacle?
8. Remove any distractions that might stop me from immersing myself in my story. This would include disconnecting from the internet, putting the phone on answering machine – and putting my mobile in a different room.
9. Find physical prompts to help me get back into the setting of the story. For example, my current WIP is a survival story set in Central Australia. I have a whole cork board of setting pics that I can look at to help me get back to the world of my story.
Hope you’ve found this helpful. I’d love to hear from you about any techniques or tips you have for getting back into your story after you’ve taken a break. Feel free to comment at the end of this post.