You May Be Distractible If:
You’re in the middle of preparing a fancy dinner. The phone rings, you run to answer it, and forget all about dinner until you smell something burning…
You’re on hold with Customer Service when your child runs in carrying a skunk. You shriek, drop the phone, and try to get both child and skunk outdoors without alarming the skunk (unless it’s already too late for that). The first time you remember you were finally about to speak with a live human being on the phone is when you finally make it back to find the phone on the floor making strange noises indicating you should hang up.
You’re in the middle of writing a really great story, when suddenly another story idea pops into your head. You abandon the story you’re writing and start working on the second idea. When (or if) you get back to the first story, you no longer remember where you were going with it, and you’ve lost all your momentum. To quote the old song, “the thrill is gone.”
If the idea is quick and ephemeral, write it down before it escapes and then get back to work on your work in progress.
If the idea comes almost completely fleshed out with characters, plotlines, and a sense of urgency, mark your place in the work in progress and make a general outline of where it was headed. Then stop and work on the new idea. (By making notes for the current work, you’ll be able to come back to it later without forgetting where you intended to go next.)