September 26, 2019
There are technically 4 days left in the month. The last day of each month is deadline at work. I will be working for the majority of my waking hours on all four of these days. Sleeping hours will hopefully occupy more of these days than have in the past week. It has been rough.
I had a doctor appointment this morning. I have apparently managed to lose about 20 pounds in the last 3 months but I can’t see any difference. Well, I have been getting ridiculous reactions to things like egg whites and dairy and vegetables, so I stopped eating them. I eat mostly meat with some goat cheese and coconut oil/cream and the blessed coffee. That honestly is probably what is responsible for any weight loss I might have experienced. Doc said I was fine and to keep it up so … gonna’.
We rearranged the entirety of the living areas of our home. That includes my desk and office space. Zack has decided to take up residence with his work space right next to mine which closes me in a bit more than I had really wanted, but as long as it stays tidy and I can maintain productivity, I am fine with that. He’s cute and smells good right after a bath.
Memp and Squiggy have each taken to laying in exactly the most inconvenient spots in the new arrangement. This serves to not only make me stretch and do rigorous calisthenics in order to get up for more coffee, or to go pee, but also is a great incentive to just stay in my chair and keep working.
I am tired. So very tired. Deadline is usually just a due date. This month is hell.
There hasn’t been much in the way of progress on my current project in the past 6 or 7 days. Too much day-job work to do. Since that is the one that pays for everything else, that is the one that takes precedence. I do alot of thinking about it though. I also listen to podcasts and YouTube while completing various day-job tasks. Most of those are about writing and publishing and the industry in general. So my mind is ready to hop right back in as soon as all of the paid work is finished. Soon…
I am working on setting up a Patreon account to which anyone interested can subscribe and receive nifty stuff that falls out of my head and onto the pages of my word processor. Stuff that I will not make available to anyone else. Subscribers will also have the opportunity to vote on which of those items they would like to see an expanded version of. I intend to make use of those to vet future book projects. Patreon subscribers will be able to recommend writing changes and, occasionally, I might have story arcs that could end different ways. Patreon subscribers would be asked to vote on which ending they would like to see make the final draft. (Of course they will get to read both.)
Absolute Write Mingling
I greeted a few new members of the AW. One had an interesting phrase to describe stream of consciousness writing. It is interesting to hear the wonder and excitement of anyone who comes across a new-to-them concept. Someone else, not in the greeting thread, asked about the frequency of interjected, non-main project inspiration. I actually think this is awesome and makes perfect sense.
THEORY: When you relax and are already allowing your mind to think creatively and somewhat unrestrained, it opens up the likelihood that you will be inspired by pretty much anything randomly passing within your sensory sphere.
I think this is the real reason aspiring career writers should write every day for at least an hour if possible. Even if you aren’t working specifically on your main project, the process is so fertile for new ideas and concepts, it is almost like throwing away diamonds not to just “practice” for a while each day.
On Twitter this morning, the first thing my phone told me, before the weather or the traffic reports, was that Rafe Judkins had tweeted a photo of a sheep from the set of the now-filming WoT series. I read the words, “…I get to walk through Emond’s Field…,” and the shameless fan-girl in my heart squeed for an hour. Amazing.
Nothing else of note that won’t make you want to punch someone.
Scrolling through here a bit, there was some interesting stuff related to WoT, and I never get tired of that.
Then, I found a post that really spoke to me. A creative writing post by Full Moon Blanket that, within the first four sentences, had resurrected a willfully forgotten lump in my throat. The feelings and sensations and absolute disbelief of a day like that, they nailed it.
You can find it at Flipping Luckies and Oedipus Rex on Reddit.
The Day Job
I am proofreading for one of the more friendly editors in my department. Her assigned Code this month is a monster. So many pages of sabotage-formatting and bad organization that she had to work with at the beginning of the month. When a job is this “dirty” when you get it, it is not going to be white-glove-clean when the proofreader gets it. It has been a challenge. The Editorial Supervisor is bailing us out by taking around a hundred pages to proofread herself. That still leaves me with about 60 pages tonight and another 200-ish tomorrow, all needing to be turned in no later than Saturday (two days) to the Editor so she can make the corrections it may need.
I have my own Code that I edited this month. MUCH smaller. But I still have to make my proofreader corrections and get it set up in the pretty formatting that allows the client to examine it for faults and changes to be made. Additionally, I have two other small side projects that I have to finish up, but those really won’t take much time. It is the remaining proofreading that I am most stressed over. All the stress is attributable to the fact that it feels like cheating or like I am being a lay-about if I stop (heaven forbid) for dinner.
Next month will apparently be a kind of difficult month for me. My job for next month is going to be a huge and possibly horrific challenge. There are 52 new amendments to apply to the base text. All together, Word tells me they are currently around 800 pages. Luckily, much of that number is probably artificially inflated with unnecessary and wonky formatting, as well as a bunch of intro language and signatures. The base text, equally wonky and full of unnecessary mess, is currently around 600 pages.
That is only the first half. I get the second half in November. I earn my keep.