Don’t ALL writers have ADD… or something like it.

Recently I read an interview about up and coming author Dawn Crandall (which you can find HERE). In it, Dawn talks about writing while dealing with ADD. Now I have my own ideas about ADD, ADHD and all those other handy diagnosis but I’m not going to get too far into that here.

I’m simply going to say… if ADD is just as everyone thinks, wouldn’t it make sense that almost every writer in the world has it!

Common adult ADD / ADHD symptoms: Trouble concentrating and staying focused

Adults with ADD/ADHD often have difficulty staying focused and attending to daily, mundane tasks. For example, you may be easily distracted by irrelevant sights and sounds, quickly bounce from one activity to another, or become bored quickly. Symptoms in this category are sometimes overlooked because they are less outwardly disruptive than the ADD/ADHD symptoms of hyperactivity and impulsivity—but they can be every bit as troublesome. The symptoms of inattention and concentration difficulties include:

  • “zoning out” without realizing it, even in the middle of a conversation

  • extreme distractibility; wandering attention makes it hard to stay on track

  • difficulty paying attention or focusing, such as when reading or listening to others

  • struggling to complete tasks, even ones that seem simple

  • tendency to overlook details, leading to errors or incomplete work

  • poor listening skills; hard time remembering conversations and following directions

Zoning out – Don’t we do that constantly? I know I do, every time an idea comes to me for a good story, every time something I see reminds me of something in my story that needs tweaking or adding. I go to that place in my head where the characters live and I “zone out” to everyone real around me.

Extreme distractability – Didn’t we just go over this one? Everyone we meet, everything we see, everywhere we go – there is SOMETHING that distracts us and makes us think about THE STORY… or gives us a new idea for a story… or reminds us of something we didn’t do when we were last immersed in THE STORY!

Difficulty paying attention or focusing – Does it seem to anyone else like this list is repetitive… and redundant? Paying attention, focusing… well, except for the current story in our head. THAT we never have trouble focusing on.

Struggling to complete tasks – Not THE STORY, never THE STORY but everything else that we’re supposed to do throughout the day… YEAH! Especially when we get sucked back to the computer to work on THE STORY!

Tendency to overlook details – Can anyone else say THANK GOD for spell-check! And proofreaders! And critique partners! And ARC readers! And then for double and triple checking the manuscript!

Poor listening skills – I’m sorry, what were you saying? Because I was thinking about THE STORY! And again – I KNOW I’m not the only author who does this!


So it begs the question – is it just me? Or do all Authors have ADD… or something like it?


©Rachel L. Miller 2014

BTW… The scientific info above came from HERE.

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