Friday, July 9, 2010

Remodeling Redux

I haven't been making nearly as much progress as I wanted on the things I'd planned to study over the course of this year, and it's occurred to me that this is, at least in part, because I'd been very vague about how I was going to accomplish all the work I intended.  I have a few topics that I was specifically interested in studying, and I told myself, "Work on them for at least an hour every day."  Well all right, then...  That was in the beginning of March, and I've not made much progress in four months.  Perhaps, it's time for a new approach?

I always function best in a situation where I have very specific expectations for what needs to be done.  So, I bit the bullet, and came up with a schedule for what things I'm going to do on what days.  (On this day, read this, take notes on it, following day, review notes, do meditation; On this day, read through this lesson and listen to cd, following day, do exercises, etc.)  I'm giving myself until Sunday to actually start this part of the routine, but I keep looking at the list and reminding myself that it's not at all insurmountable.

I am also reading through the workout book that my husband has been using, called Huge in a Hurry.  It's put out by Mens' Health Magazine, hence the cheesetastic title, but the book actually has some very sound advice for how to set up your workout routine in a way that is easier, less time-consuming, and more effective.  I've been inconsistent, at best, about going to the gym, and this too must change.  If I don't feel good, both from a health standpoint and just in terms of how I look at myself, I'm less motivated to do anything else.  So, teaming up Huge in a Hurry with The Eat-Clean Diet for Men, it's back to eating healthy, and back to the gym three days a week.  Planning my gym routine and making a log so I can keep track of my progress?  Yep.  Starting to review what food I'll be eating and plan meals ahead of time so I can buy the right things at the grocery store? You betcha.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, I have a novel in the works that has been lurking in my brain for a very long time now.  It's gone through a number of incarnations, most of which have been poorly written, poorly planned, and poorly executed.  In January of this year, I scrapped the most recent previous version and started over again.  (Don't worry, I still have the previous version saved so I can pick out the good bits and use them, but most of the writing really wasn't salvageable and a lot of the plot needed to be reworked, so a fresh start was necessary.)  So far this year, I've not really worked on the blasted thing at all, though I got some fantastic advice from Lynn Flewelling, and some fantastic feedback from other participants at the workshop.

That said, the average length for a publishable novel these days is about 130,000 words (though I've been following Brandon Sanderson a bit as he writes the next volume of the Wheel of Time, and his goal is actually 310,000 words, but, after all, it is the Wheel of Time).  At this writing, I have 2,997 words.  And that's the same number I've had since I did some cutting after the Writing on the Waves workshops ended.  It's time to get cracking on this, too.  I am setting my goal for 130k by 11/30.  As of right now, that means I need to write about 885 words a day to reach that goal.  Can I write that much in a day's time?  This blog post is 685 words, and I've written it in the course of about an hour, so the answer to that is yes.

If you want to know any more of the specifics, let me know.  Otherwise, you'll have to pardon me, but I have some homework to do.