Monday, February 26, 2007

laptop temptations and blue crayons


Much has occurred since my last post in my myopic world of writing.

The plan is still intact – science fiction novel looking to be about 16 to 18 chapters with the first draft complete by year’s end.

I’m still getting up every weekday morning at 5:15 AM, which allows me a good hour or more of writing before work.

So what has changed?

Well, I am not using my desktop computer anymore. It is off limits during my writing time.

I have reverted back to my old laptop. Windows 98SE, WordPerfect version 7, and absolutely no games – they have all been purged.

Oh, and internet access is not even an option on the beast.

How is it going?

Well, with a sample size of one day, I can say it is a complete success.

Punishment for non-compliance?

Shaving my head bald and painting it blue . . .

. . . or not. Actually I have a modest budget each week to spend on books, DVDs, and blue crayons.

If I even so much as turn on my desktop computer during writing time – the weekly budget is gone!

No kidding. Now, this takes a whole bunch of self-control - self-control which was obviously not there when I was using my desktop computer for writing.

The temptation to log in and just check my email, update Windows, play a game, etc – was too damn great.

So, I’m trying this new plan on for size. I have pretty good willpower when I make up my mind to do something.

And,

Bonus number 1 – if the power goes out before I have saved (it has happened before) I won’t lose anything.

Bonus number 2 – I’m back to using my ergonomic keyboard which I like way more than my flat one.

So, when I get this book published I can have a good laugh about using outdated technology to do it on.

And if the laptop route fails me – I will go to graph paper and pencil (my method from eons ago) . . .

. . . and not my idea of fun. The idea of reverting back to paper and pencil, I think, is enough to keep me on this plan.

Until next week when you will know if I did unspeakable things to the pooch,

or behaved and chose the right fork in the road.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Only 44 Percent Left


Now I don’t want to sound all moribund and whatnot – but according to my calculations I’ve got about 44 percent of this life left.

Which means so far 56 percent of it is spent.

What does it all mean?

As I sit down each morning to write I need something to remind me that screwing about is quickly becoming a non-option - If I want to actually be a published writer that is.

But perhaps I need to define “published writer” a little more since I already am one technically.

I have three short stories published already and about seventy rejections letters.

Not very much - but still enough to qualify as a working published writer.

What I need is to change a few things in my life so that I can focus much more on the actual production of works (my new novel for instance) and less goofing around.

Goofing around for me is messing with my damn computer. Like getting updates, then having programs crash so I have to reinstall them or go back to a previous version of Windows XP, etc, etc.

Waste of my time.

I know I’ve threatened this in the past, but I really think next computer is going to be a Mac. Yup, I’ve about had it with Windows. I know – there are other operating systems. But I don’t have time to screw with them.

Time.

It is all about time and what to do with the time we have.

Which brings me to computer games. I really like them, but spend too much time playing them.

I need to stop and concentrate more on the writing.

Yeah, this means more researching, reading and writing.

Wish me luck.

In a few months, according to my calculations, I’ll only have 42.7 percent left.

And I’m pretty sure it will go by fast.

Now, back to my novel.

Until next week.

Keep writing and dreaming and doing.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

five fevered nights


Well,

here I am again.

It would appear as though my poor body went through an extreme period of global warming - like 102 degrees for five days over the entire surface of my world.

Yes, I truly am a fevered writer.

But I live.

And no, I did not get the flu shot.

And yes, I was off work for a whole week.

Squee!

As for writing - well, I have been planning and plotting and plodding along quite nicely.

The major framework for my “new work” is in place.

The players are assembling on the stage.

The fan is being fired up.

I’m pretty excited about it - and now that I have fully recovered from my episode of the “East Tygris reptile flu”, I can get back into writing each morning in full participation mode.

And I was supposed to embark on an entirely new career this year . . .

Well, that fell through.

Not enough coin in the coffers to pull it off.

Also, not enough hours in the day, ambition in my bones . . . (pick any other)

So, I am left with only my “big project” this year.

Which will have to do. It is a tonne of work, as any writer will know.

Oh, did I mention it will be a novel not a script or puppet show or cartoon?

Just to clarify.

And I do want to get it sold and published when I finish it.

The trick is to finish it and get it published before 80 months have passed.

Yes, 80 months is the countdown to writer from slave.

Cheer for me.

Actually, my ultimate plan is to have the first draft complete by year’s end.

This year’s end.

Then spend next year on rewrites and the next “bigger project.”

I will try to stay away from viruses the rest of this year.

Oh, and I did manage to bounce on my trampoline the entire month of January.

I deserve a cookie.

Until next week.

Keep the words flowing.