The Basics of Focusing on Writing

The Basics of Focusing on Writing

Focusing on writing is a struggle for many writers.

Picture this scenario. You just came up with an idea for a book that will be so incredible, you’re never going to have to work again in your life. It is the epitome of brilliant, and so are you, yet for some reason, you can’t seem to get focused enough to write it.

Here are a few tips to focus, so that you can take over the world one story at a time.

1. Calm Down

While adrenaline might feel good, it’s definitely going to make it hard to sit still and write. Focusing on your writing is nearly impossible when your heart is racing and you’re all pumped up.

Before you start writing, try doing something you feel relaxing. Everyone is different, but some things that typically help are listening to music, reading a chapter of a book that inspires you (but also has a natural conclusion), or just taking some deep breaths.

Your book idea is not going anywhere. Despite what you may think, no one is going to steal it from you.

Once you’re in the zone, it’s going to be a lot easier to get to work.

2. Focusing on Writing by Getting Comfy

If something is bothering you, get rid of it. It will only continue to get in the way of your focus as you try to write. Move your legs, scratch the itch, go to the bathroom. Do whatever it takes to relieve you of any annoying feelings that might distract you from your work.

Try adding things to your environment that put you at ease as well. If you work better with music on, start playing something soothing. If you want tea, get tea. If you want coffee, check the time and then make a responsible decision with your own future wellbeing in mind. If it’s past a certain hour you may want to fill your favorite mug with decaf.

Being comfortable is essential for your brain function, so prioritize yourself here. Take the time to feel good, so that you write well. There is no benefit in muscling it out with obnoxious distractions for the next few hours.

3. Remove Distractions That Prevent Focusing on Writing

Speaking of distractions, get rid of them. A distraction can prevent you from making progress on your novel.

If you find that using YouTube to play music ends up with you down a rabbit hole of unrelated content, find a website blocker and prevent yourself from using YouTube while you’re working. If you constantly get notifications on your phone that take your attention away from what you need to be doing, try putting it on do not disturb or airplane mode.

I would also advise finding a quiet area. While some soft music in the background is not harmful a tv blasting or friends laughing close by may become an issue.

Be honest with yourself. If something is going to stop you from focusing on writing do what you can to avoid it.

Focusing on Writing Meme

4. Start Working

While this may seem intuitive and a little dumb, once you start working you are more likely to keep working. The hardest part is often starting.

Immerse yourself in the world you are creating. Once you’re in it you’re going to be less likely to want to leave it and do other things.

If you find it hard to start working, just remember that everything can be edited. Start out with a random sentence that relates in some way to what you’re trying to say so that you can get in the groove. Once you’ve finished, you can revise. The hardest part is getting a product on the page.

5. Have Fun

Now that you’re focused and working, have fun. It sounds cliché, but if you start to dread writing, or working on whatever project you’re doing, there is no way you will be able to focus.

Don’t push yourself, and remember: you’re doing this for yourself. No one else would ever be able to achieve the same heights that you will. Only you can tell your story.


Focusing on writing does not have to be torture. By following these tips you will find yourself zoned in on your writing in no time.

Happy writing!

Ella Uhlmann

Ella is a student who enjoys writing in her spare time. Ella’s favorite genres are fantasy and mystery, and she recommends The Sleeper and The Spindle (Neil Gaiman) and Murder Most Unladylike (Robin Stevens).

Author: Ella

Just a young writer looking to take the mistakes I've made to aid the next generation.