Monday, November 3, 2014

A Not-So-Quiet Adventure in Writing

by photostock
Saturday, I took my three younger children to the public library. It was quite an adventure. The definition of "quiet at the library" has changed for me now that I am a mom. Really, any public library that has an interactive children's section can't expect the same kind of "quiet" like the musty university library of my younger years where a talk above a whisper was a no-no.


"Library quiet" is more of a "not-roaring (sometimes, depending on the puppet show), non-shouting-
by photostock
at-your-sibling" kinda hush.

Let's fast-forward to later that day when I gave myself permission to write in the chaos of my own home. A feat I had long since thrown off as typical in my writing life.

For some reason this past year I told myself a lie: That I could only write with peace and quiet, no interruptions, and preferably with the hustle and bustle of a coffee shop just beyond my laptop. With four kids, two dogs, and a husband, you can imagine how much writing I have accomplished this past year with this type of expectation. Throw in a little life drama....okay...let's say heavy on the side of spice with no sweetener about... and I have myself a few hundred blank pages.

Back to the chaos of my own home this past Saturday...I plopped myself on the couch with my daughter singing and dancing to Max and Ruby, my sons battling it out on Minecraft and inviting the neighborhood in for a peek at their "worlds", and I made myself WRITE. Even just a sentence every five minutes, or between snacks, or after breaking up a fist fight (no joke)...I actually got in a groove.

by arztsamui
(What I hope my boys are aspiring for when they fight in my living room.)

But in a library with the children's section not so secluded and the volume level unexpectedly high, there were still stories in books waiting to be read and stories being read by readers (even if they were slightly annoyed with the noise). And in the crazy life I live, there is still a story to be told amidst the chaos, and even if the story being written by a writer who is slightly (or more so) annoyed with the little beasts running about, it is at least being written. Let's just say, when the book is finally finished, it will all be quite the adventure worth having!

What is your biggest distraction to settle into a writing groove?

by imagerymajesty
**all photos found on

Angie Dicken is a full-time mom and lives in the Midwest with her Texas Aggie sweetheart. An ACFW member since 2010, she has written five Historical Romance novels, has a Historical underway, and is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of The Steve Laube Agency. Angie also spends her time designing one-sheets, selling Jamberry Nail Wraps, and drinking good coffee with great friends. Check out her author page at and her personal blog at 


kaybee said...

Hi Angie,
Believing we need a "perfect environment" is one of the Lies We Believe. "If only...if only..."
I've never had a designated writing space and my computer is in the middle of the living room. My children are grown, but when they were at home I wrote in longhand on the kitchen table and typed it into the computer When Ever. You do what you have to do. I visit libraries in my secular work. None of them are quiet any more. I can't remember the last time a librarian "shushed" me. Libraries are taking a different role in the community but a welcome one.
Thanks for the post.
Kathy Bailey

Casey said...

Time! I only wish there was more time and bigger pockets of it, since it takes me a while to settle into a writing rhythm when I'm writing a novel.

Jeanne Takenaka said...

Loved this, Angie. :) My family is in a busy season. Just life. My biggest distraction is my to-do list and email. I'm learning to just turn email notifications off when I sit down to write. It's helping. But seeing stuff piled around the house and ignoring--on purpose—is not easy for the organizing chickie. :)

Angie Dicken said...

Thank you for sharing with us, ladies! Sorry I have been MIA was a busy day of writing, kids' activities, and chores. Hopefully my time management will evolve with my flexibility on writing environment! HA! Have a great week!!

Sherry Ellis said...

There is no perfect writing environment when you have kids. I usually end up writing when I wait for my kids at their after-school activities. It's not easy concentrating with the noise levels in those places!

Angie Dicken said...

Yep! Thanks for commenting, Sherry! You are right, kids in the mix makes the ideal writing environment difficult...but if the story is there, then it's bound to pour out! Gotta keep believing that!! :)