rule #5: exercise
i’ve let my activity level slide in the past month, and it’s matched my diminishing output, book-wise, which is interesting, as i used the book work as the excuse to skip exercising. now, i did spend more time writing; but i also wrote less worth keeping.
i’ve had a very poor output over the last several days, trying to figure out the answer to this one problem. it galls me to no end to think that i’ve come all this way, only to be tripped up at the very end. i tried everything i could think of (outlining, throwing stuff out and starting fresh, totally different directions, character visualization, environment changes), and every time found me writing my way into the same dead end. i’ve probably written a dozen half pages in this time, and thrown them all out.
like everything else: smarter, not harder.
why is that so hard to see when i’m in the middle of it, and so obvious afterward?
ah, well. i have, thankfully, gotten back into the swing of things. my wife and i have started a local gym membership this morning (i did my level best not to overdo it this first day, but we’ll see what i feel like in the morning), but the real writing kicker was jumping on the bike and taking off for several miles yesterday when i got home.
it was dark by the time i rolled back into the driveway, but i’d also discovered, halfway through, the answer to the problem that i’ve been hammering uselessly against for the past several days. and when it happened, it was one of those ‘well, duh!’ moments, of course. the rest of the ride cruised by, and i was on a high when i got back, happily doing my situps and pullups, and planning out the next steps in my head with a stupid grin on my face the whole time.
i stumbled a little today, but this evening i tried a new tactic, one which i have been loathe to use in the past. i forced myself to stop worrying about all the possible variations and consequences of each statement and situation, and just write. i’ve been so close to the end for so long, that i’m starting to kill it. so, after another handful of false starts, i kicked myself onto the next page, anyway, and kept writing. as a result, i finish the day with a total of 6+ high-energy pages, which i’m thrilled with.
this does, however, mean revision is going to be a little more work than anticipated, but if you’re reading this blog, this is probably no surprise to hear from me, despite all my proclamations to the contrary, in earlier posts.
nonetheless, it’s progress, and what’s life without lessons?