Distraction, Distraction and Distraction! by Mary Cobbe

indexIt constantly amazes me how much we can do;  how much we are capable of and how many choices we have in order to live our lives, fulfill our days and generally progress through the routine of being.  There is the everyday stuff of perceived normality, and then there are the odd-ball days which throw a googly at you and throw you off your predicted tracks.

In young adult fiction I am attempting to step into the shoes of teenage mutiny, angst and innocence, with children dealing with the very adult issues they come across.   So often, as a writer, you are writing about experiences you have come across yourself, or of those you know. The balance between real life and the thought processes you have to go through as a writer is constantly being adjusted, as one is always an attempt to make sense of the other.  Perhaps that is the value of being a writer, you are able to make explicit that which is often intangible or less coherent otherwise.

It struck me on thinking about it how we are always juggling with that balance of reality and the need to do now against spending time developing our imagination and recording that reality.  The discipline of writing requires a commitment to preferred locations for working and preferred times, and I know I am bad at that.  The need to do now often interferes with my aims of achieving planned targets, either with writing, painting or making things.  It only takes a telephone call, or a comment from someone, to be steered off course to deal with ‘today’ and leave the rest until tomorrow, but how, in the end, it is possible to suppress what is bubbling up inside, shouting to get out?

Maybe, it is that fact alone that can differentiate between the published achievers, who work their socks off to get work finished, and those of us who would like to be like them.  Perhaps it is just a question of focus, making the time, using opportunities that present themselves, mixed with people watching, research and thoughtful observation. But the juggling never ends.

Even writing a blog like this seems to require a discipline of sorts; the need to construct, balance and consider, but ultimately to open up thoughts for discussion.

Heigh ho, on with the next chapter, this has been a nice little distraction!!!


5 thoughts on “Distraction, Distraction and Distraction! by Mary Cobbe

  1. Sorry, I don’t know how it happened because it is correct on my original script I uploaded – but there should be an ‘im’ in front of the ‘possible’ in the last line of the 3rd paragraph!
    Recently a major ‘distraction’ though has caused me to completely re-think my approach to some of the teenage programmes we come across.


  2. Real life and writing struggle to co-exist.Ultimately it comes down to what is most important. Always and for ever the answer lies in our own hands. The question of what we might sacrifice in order to see what we might gain. My thinking is, we only get the one life. It probably wouldn’t be so great to be lying on our deathbeds thinking – ‘I’m glad I didn’t devote more time to writing.’ The distractions are not our friend.


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