Distractions! How do YOU focus?

- by Charlotte Hubbard

They’re all good, these distractions I’ve got, but they are, well—distracting while I consider how to handle my writing schedule this year! If you look at this brain and see a figure in fetal position . . . it might be me!

I am so pleased to announce that right before Christmas I sold the first two books of a new Amish romance series to NAL! Really nice boost to my career—and my agent and I figured out how to wedge them between the other three Amish romances I sold last January. This leaves me with the tightest, back-to-back-to-back writing schedule I’ve ever had—a very full dance card through the spring of 2012 (and in that year, I’ll have four of these single titles coming out!). I’m confident I can write these books well, even in the three-and-a-half month time slots I have for them, but I’ll be seriously busy!

NOW, toss in my husband’s new job in St. Paul MN: our MO home’s for sale and I’m house hunting up north. This means I’ve been living “decluttered and staged” so I can leave home on twenty minutes’ notice, and I face a major move when it sells (I’m so grateful we’ll be professionally packed and moved!). Here again, it’s all good and I’m amazing myself with how calmly I’m taking these major life changes in stride. Ten years ago I would’ve been a twangy ball of rubber bands and nerves!

But help me out here: what ways do YOU suggest I find ways to focus on my writing in the coming months?  I’m open to all manner of suggestions! I’m going to be uprooted, away from my Mac at times (really glad I got my iPad last year, as I write well on that!), and tending the ten thousand details that go with selling the old home and settling the new one.

And—how do you Promo Queens/Kings out there suggest I streamline my online promotion while I’m in this process? I’m taking a new name for these new books, and having my website revamped to accommodate both of us, but I’m open to your best time-savvy tips for optimizing time, money and effort to reach my readers.

THANKS for your comments and suggestions! Happy New Year to you! And may YOU receive as many wonderful distractions and as much good news as I’ve been granted in recent months!


  1. Hi Charlotte,

    We really miss you at MORWA. Sounds as if your life is even fuller than I imagined! (if that’s possible). Many new books to write, a move to coordinate and a whole new website to redesign. Wowzer!!

  2. Hi, Shirl! Thank goodness I have a wonderful web designer, and I was already scheduled for a site update in May! If only I could teach my dog to write for me…

    BIG news here: we sold our house yesterday! So now the clock/meter are really ticking! And I have a hunch that within the next 12 hours we’ll have a deal agreement on the place we’ve been negotiating for in MN. Makes writing seem like such a tame, rational way to spend your time!

  3. Delegate authority. Let others take some of the burden off of you.

    If the income looks good enough, splurge on some hired help to take care of the small things or ignore the small things.

    And make it a top priority to take care of yourself and your health because long-term health problems aren’t worth the risk. It’s better to lose an extra hour of writing than losing too much sleep or not taking that walk.

  4. I admire your spirit, Charlotte! Taking on so many challenges will be difficult, but I know you love writing and that it will be a constant comfort to you during a year of changes.

  5. Ya know, Phoebe, I had the thought that focusing on these books will indeed be a SANE place, a sort of retreat to my own reality. And, now that I know I’ll be spending a couple of months holed up in my husband’s little apartment–with no distractions except to check on progress at the house–I have a great chance to really focus on this book I’ll be working on.