Focus

August 23, 2010 | Filed under: Uncategorized

I was reading some comments by a would-be indie developer today, lamenting the amount of knowledge that is required to be an ‘all-rounder’, and thus to be a solo game developer. It *is* an insane amount of work. You need to know web design, PR, accountancy, marketing, advertising, game design, programming, and probably a dozen other things, even if (like me) you contract out art and sound.

There are a number of ways to approach this, but one of the best is to be focusd. to only do one thing at a time. To avoid distractions. if you are trying to develop games from home, alone, but you have MSN, Skype and a web browser open all day, you probably aren’t focused on the task at hand.

As a hobby, I attempt archery. I’m not very good at it, but it’s very useful. Archery teaches me to stand up straight, focus on a distant object, and get some exericse, all of which my job lacks. In addition, archery is all about focus. When I’m distracted, I shoot badly. One of the main aims in recurve archery is to be absolutely totally and utterly motionless at the point where you release the string. Your body must not move (which it wants to) at the point of release. How good can people get at this? See below. Keep watching, it’s not a photo. Watch the bow string move. Are you this focused?

2 Responses to “Focus”

  1. I physically unplug my network cable the night before (got the idea from http://www.paulgraham.com/distraction.html). It has an enormous positive impact on my productivity the next day. I also keep my desktop clear of icons. I have a few different inboxes (post-its, inbox directory, voice recorder) to capture any stray thoughts that might interrupt me. And so on.

    It’s amazing what environmental changes can be made to enhance your focus.

    I also have a physical hobby (latin dance) – but that doesn’t really make such a good metaphore ;)

    <3 a would-be indie ‘all-rounder’