Friday, July 2, 2010

What is your kryptonite?

As some of you already know, I’m in the process of some pretty extensive revisions for my agent. Changing 3rd person point of view to 1st, rearranging scene sequence, developing characters in a slightly different way, etc. Once we settled on an outline that worked for both of us I began my alterations. I work fast so things were going along at a good pace until…

Well, until I discovered that I had a copy of one of Rhyannon Byrd’s Blood Runner series that I hadn’t yet read. How could I have forgotten it? I can’t really say…I just did and it lay forgotten on my desk for a long time until recently when I stumbled on it again.

I just had to read it. It was a compulsion. I couldn’t just look at it teasing me on my desk and not crack it open. It was far too tempting.

So instead of dumping my work altogether I made some deals with myself. Write for an hour, read for an hour. Revise a chapter, read a chapter. It worked pretty well for the first fifty pages or so of Byrd’s book, but then, like all of her books, I was hooked and I gorged myself on it over two nights, shifting my work to the morning instead.

It sounds bad, I know. I don’t usually get side-tracked so easily but there are certain things that act as kryptonite for me…you know, that weirdo green rock that weakens Superman? Well apparently a good romance is my weakness, especially in the face of extensive revisions.

At least it was only two days…and it’s not like I didn’t write altogether. I did get five chapters done in 48 hours.

Anyway, I’m curious, what’s your weakness? What will derail your strongest attempts to stay focused?

Don't forget, I've got another contest going on this month for an e-copy of Assassin. All you have to do is comment and you're entered to win!


  1. Well, I can say for sure that reading Hunger Games derailed my writing for a couple weeks after I finished reading LOL. So yeah, a fabulous book will do it for me, but I can usually avoid reading during my normal writing time.

    Cons. I have a really tough time writing at a good con. Hell, I have a hard time writing at a boring con, but I usually get SOMETHING done there.

    Other than that, my biggest issue is other people expecting my time. For example, when I go to visit family, my mother gets all kinds of pissy when I bring out my laptop. It doesn't matter if she's reading or doing some other solitary thing, she still doesn't want me writing. *sigh*

  2. Any book by any of my favorite authors is my kryptonite. I pick it up and can't put it down until its done. One sitting, two at the most. I find myself making deals with myself to get the writing and revisions done too. And I usually end up on the short end of the deal: book is read and I've made very little head way in the writing department. I just love a good story. Right now, there are four authors that I will drop everything to read their new book--which means if I want anything done, I only have three weeks until one of those authors releases their new book. :-)

  3. Since I've also been distracted by a Byrd novel or two, I feel your pain. ;) At least it was a good distraction and it seems you are making short work of your revisions.


  4. @Metz Photography - I am curious... Which four authors?

  5. A good book always seems like a good excuse, doesn't it? And, hey, 5 chapters in 48 hours is nothing to sneeze at!

    Most of you know I'm flash fiction nut, so I'm often side-tracked by mini-stories. Fortunately, they're pretty quick to get out of my head. :)

    Good luck with the rest of the rewrite!

  6. I'm amazingly distractible when I facing a hard scene or I'm not sure where I'm going with a story. I've actually been known to scrub toilets to get out of writing. Bad TV, boring conversations with distant relatives, mahjong, anything works as an excuse when I just don't wanna. (My apartment is never so clean as it is during NaNo.)

  7. To be honest I tend to find that I write bits and run out of steam when I have to concentrate on things like dialogue. I love getting into Combat and writing that but when it comes to character dialogue I run dry.

    I also have a real problem when it comes to the various stages for the project. For example I'm reasonable with opening, got a great finish planned but that middle act? Well lets just say that its usually pretty weak. So I'm doing my best to work on both aspects and see what I can get done.

  8. Oh, life is my kryptonite. I find myself interested in too many things and get distracted very, very easily. Finding focus to simply write (it's easier on rewrites, for me) is the hardest part of "being a writer" for me!

    Oh geez. Is the word verification mocking me? I got "excustro" - it's like my magic power or something.

  9. J.R. Ward. Whenever something new of hers hits the shelves my whole life goes on hold!