One of the tidbits I jotted down at the recent Pennwriters Conference was something Meredith Mileti, our luncheon keynote speaker said. She proposed that many writers are unitaskers. Since I am entirely the opposite, I had to explore this a little.
As I've mentioned on this blog many times, I always have music or even a video playing in the background when I write. I'm watching a TV show on demand as I write this. As a busy mother, I learned to multitask as a way to survive and make sure everything ran smoothly. That carried over to my writing. But Meredith sounded so sure of herself I had searched out some articles on the subject. Here is one from Forbes and another interesting one from Naukri, a career help site.
Most of the articles I found were related to working in office like places rather than writing at home but the advice was the same. But the advice is solid for working at home also. I found it very interesting and am going to try unitasking more, especially when I feel like I'm stuck on a scene. The point made in a few of the articles that stuck with me is that multitasking is really nothing of the sort. What your mind is actually doing is switching quickly from task to task and giving none its due attention.
There were a few ideas shared to help you unitask and again one stuck with me. Uncluttering your workspace. Those stacks of reminders of other things you need to address will on distract you from what you're working on. I realized this is so true for me. I'm going to clean up my desk this weekend.
Another point I learned from reading about unitaskers is that sometimes I am one. When I do edits, I do that without the music or video noise. At least I'm doing something right.
So do you unitask or multitask when you write? Do you agree with what the articles say about the inefficiency of multitasking? When do you always unitask at an activity? Do you agree with Meredith that many writers are unitaskers?