I can already tell that this is going to be one of those days when focusing is a challenge. I got my kitchen cleaned and organized last week and earlier this week, which inspired me to tackle the dining room. That room mostly tends to hold the spillover from the kitchen and from the patio, as the dining table is by the door to the patio, and so a lot of the stuff I use on the patio that isn’t stored outside ends up sitting on the dining table. When I was out shopping yesterday I found a little cart that’s perfect for storing my patio stuff. It sits in the corner near the door, and now my table is clear. I also got a little plastic bin that fits in my cabinet shelf to hold all my tea, so I can just pull it out and see all the varieties, and it’s sad how thrilling I find that.
But then having those two rooms cleaned and organized has inspired me to tackle the living room, and now when I sit down to try to think about work, I find myself instead looking up things like racks to hold CDs or cute baskets for holding my knitting. I want to organize All The Things. Some people do spring cleaning, but I turn domestic in the fall.
All this is great, and it needs to be done, but I’m supposed to be writing a book. I’ll start thinking about the next scene that needs to be written, and next thing I know, I’m off on a mental rabbit trail, contemplating ways to organize things and what I need to buy to make that happen.
I think what I may need to do is establish a starting-to-write ritual for this book, something that’s guaranteed to get me into the right mindset to write and focus on that world. That usually involves a piece of music that serves as a theme for the book, maybe a few images to look at. I normally write in silence, but if I find a piece of music (usually a movie score) that works, I can play that to shut out all the other voices vying for attention. Scent can even work — a candle or essential oil that takes me to the right place.
Of course, the effort to pick all this stuff can serve as its own kind of procrastination/distraction. I’m probably better off just giving myself a stern mental lecture.