Lately, I have found myself with a bit of a focus issue. Ok, I have always had a slight focus issue, but it has gotten worse.
I usually listen to music while I write. As I have said before, I find it relaxes me and sets the mood for what I am writing.
Last week, I was writing a peppy scene between my MC, Julia, and her dad, Aaron. They were out celebrating a birthday, so I had chosen “today’s hits” on Pandora. As I typed, I found myself singing along at times, but really didn’t think too much about it. I finished the chapter, feeling pretty good about it.
I put it aside for a few days, and came back to it earlier this week. Apparently, I wasn’t as focused as I should have been, because my rather conservative MC told her dad, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but whips and chains excite me.” Thanks to Rihanna’s S & M, my contemporary romance suddenly became erotica. (OK, not really, but it was highly inappropriate).
The funniest part was the context. Aaron was nagging his daughter about needing to find some male companionship. Apparently, Julia thought her dad needed to know this about her.
Needless to say, I quickly edited that out and replaced it with what I thought I wrote.
Unfortunately, this is not the first time I have done something like this. It made me think about what I was listening to as I write. I decided I needed to try something new.
Fortunately, it is early spring, so there is a lot of preseason baseball on right now. I decided to give it a try.
Let me start by saying that I love baseball. Pookie and I have an 18-game ticket plan for our local triple-A team, the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs, an affiliate of the awesome Philadelphia Phillies. In addition, we have already purchase tickets for six additional games, and the season hasn’t even started yet.
This time of year, my Phillies mug is my go-to cup of choice, often getting hand-washed before it has a chance to get to the dishwasher. My Phillies and Iron Pigs shirts are always in the laundry. I can tell you home many days until the regular season for Major (8) and Minor (14) League Baseball.
That being said, baseball is not the most high-paced sport out there. Unlike football or basketball, there is a lot of downtime in baseball. This makes it easy to follow a game without giving it my full attention. When something major happens, the crowd lets me know. Until then, I am perfectly content to have my nose buried in my computer.
I have done this all week so far, from 1-4, when ESPN has been broadcasting a live game. It seems to be just what I needed. I have written over 6,000 words so far during these games—while keeping up with the laundry, dishes, Twitter, and anything else that may be able to pull me away.
Even better? No inappropriate lyrics popping up in my writing. While the announcers may sometimes make some rather out-there comments, I don’t know what they are going to say in advance, so I can’t say it with them. This prevents me from unwittingly typing what is coming out of my mouth instead of what is going on in my mind.
The best part? It help me to bide the time until baseball season truly starts. Hopefully, the snow will be gone by then. 🙂
What do you listen to while you write? Music? Sports? Something else? Have you ever transcribed what is going on around you while writing? And is anyone else as excited as I am for baseball season to start? 🙂