December 21st, 2019 – 451

I am so knackered it hurts. No really, actual pain again. I’m praying that isn’t illness, but that’s about as much as I can do. This has been one of the most intense ends to a year I’ve ever had, and honestly even a year ago I don’t think I’d have coped anywhere near as well as I have done. Still, I feel there is more I can be doing.

Getting back into writing earlier whenever possible would be such a huge win. It’s half 9 and I still haven’t. Yes I’ve chained 55 TSS days but I’d trade that for not getting run down over Christmas. It’s a moral question in a way: I have proved that I can write main content every day, but the trade off is sleep quality. I have until now maintained the latter has to come first. Should it still?

My gut says no. I think this is a progressing step and not a regressing one. But with this potential new normal in place I have a responsibility to shift the habit. Even now after figuring out as much as I have, I don’t know I have the power to do that. But my mantra for those kind of tasks has come through worse:

Try something, and if it doesn’t work, try something else.

December 20th, 2019 – 450

What a day to finish work on. 450 days of 1K. Ok it’s getting cliche for me to go “how the @&£$ is this still going??” but come on, we’re close to half a thousand days. Well, in a way that’s not true, not the being close to a thousand but the amazement it’s lasted is, well less so now. This is the new normal. I have no way of knowing if a thousand of main story content every day is the new normal, but a thousand in general is. Sleeping, eating well, all the typical maintenance tasks of  life pale compared to 1K. I can forget each from time to time, but I never forget my thousand.

Saying that, haven’t written it yet today. This has been a sweep up day of closing what leftover tasks I have. And making sure those I need to pick up after Christmas are in Trello as well of course. Star Wars tonight, and then I’m going to try and have a restful and quiet holiday. No illness, no election, no drama or horrors. If I can avoid all that I will call it a success. TSS is in the home stretch, and who knows, when rested up I may do a huge chunk of it at once. But no pressure. This break is about recovery.

Here’s to 450 more days of this lifechanging magic.

December 19th, 2019 – 449

I ended up going to the shop yesterday. By now you know what I’m going to write next. Late night, wrote super tired, got little sleep. I do not know why I keep doing this to myself. Ok, I will admit it was worth it, and I don’t regret my choice. That said, I am now fighting uphill on the last proper workday of the year. On the flipside, it is the last proper work day of the year, at least for my paid job.

I’m seeing Star Wars tomorrow, so that’s giving me a thing to look forward to.  Keeping positive isn’t proving hard, but it’s nice to give myself an emotional buffer. It’s bizarre as I was a wreck a week after we lost Eastbourne in 2015. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sad, and no less so than the last time, but so much more stable than I’ve been in the past. I’m glad about that. My own feelings aside about the flaws with democracy – a book I keep almost writing and then deciding no, that will come back to bite me – positive is good. There needs to be a lot less hate in politics, and I want to lead by calm example.

So writing! What’s a writing amirite? This is an anything-but-writing blog. TSS is coming along so well I don’t know what to say. At the start I felt certain this project would see me suffer a huge bout of writers block. Except, well now I get what the people who say “writers block doesn’t exist” mean. I still think they word it in a stupid way that reads more like ‘ner ner ner ner ner, I’m better at this than you’. But now I understand you can craft writing as as much a habit as tooth brushing, I see how you can avoid it.

I’m going to keep harping on about my holy tritity of books that changed my life: Getting Things Done, Enough, and The Power of Habit. I used an Oxford comma there and now I’m feeling dirty, am not a fan. So that last book talks about how the more you do a task over and over, the less your brain has to work on it. When you try and think too hard about it, you end up having to do all the work in your consious mind. That is “writers block”. It does exist, but there is a cure. You have to write every day. And every day you do, you think about doing it less and less. If I ever write a book on 1K that will be the core message: writing doesn’t have to be hard, but it is if you overthink it.

That’s if I write that book. I’ll only do it if I decide there’s a need. Right now, the trio of books above, along with other books like Save the Cat do the job fine. I’m not such an egomaniac that I need to throw my own ramblings into print. But, apparantly enough of one that I have to throw them here. Go figure.

December 18th, 2019 – 448

I messed up again. This time though it’s only some minor mistakes and nothing I can’t work around. I left a bunch of stuff at home I was pretty keen to have at work today, but with one exception I should be fine without them. I wanted to put some Deep Heat into my bag, so that when my legs cramp up as they’ve threatened to do for days now, I’m prepaired. My wrist and legs are a bit of a mess, but I should still be ok without medication for it, for now at least. I’m expecting by the weekend my body is going to shut down hard.

I also managed to leave my personal journal at home. You might think that sounds crazy for me, improbable even. Well my imaginary readers, here’s a twist. My foil in this case was forgetting that the book in my bag at present is not my personal journal anymore. That’s because yesterday at 6pm, I finished the final page of that journal. The five months it covers see me pushing through some of 1Ks biggest challenges yet. I know as with Journal 1# it is going to be an invaluable resource going forwards.

But the third thing I left at home is a problem: my coffee. I have enough for maybe two cups after I finish my current one, and four cups is about the baseline of my comfort zone. Which, you know that makes my whole ‘weekends’ lack focus’ meme make a, lot more, sense. For real? That’s the reason weekends keep falling off the wagon? Oh jeez it is isn’t it. When I used to go to the cafe on Saturdays I was much less sluggish. When I used my Dualit more at home I kept things tidier and got more done. 

Well, that’s why I write this little blog. All the same damn it, how has it taken me almost 450 days to figure this nonsense out? Why am I so bad? Oh TSS is going great by the way, another thousand in the bag, story feels at the right pace, in the home stretch. And I’m getting back on the WattPad wagon today too, can’t let that drought go on any longer. Here goes nothing.

…I can’t believe my problems keep coming down to ‘coffee helps, drink more of it’ and I keep ignoring the obvious. No, no I can believe that. I am dumb.

December 17th, 2019 – 447

Fingers crossed, my various health ailments were a false alarm. I was all queued up to call the doctors this morning, but waking up at 7am I felt, pretty good to be honest. Whether I will relapse back into more back pain later or not I’ve no idea, but here’s hoping not. Aside from that, I am doing alright. I managed to hit target by 10:30 yesterday evening so I even got an ok sleep. It should have been a great sleep, but I stayed up playing on CubeCobra until about quarter past eleven. 

I wish the inside of my head today could be the same level of tranquil. I’m having a pretty bad bout of melancholy. It’s spun between guilt and grief at certain and specific memories, hard to quantify. It’s funny, because as much as melancholy messes with my head, it’s also the state in which I am most at peace. There’s a calm, and yes in spite of what I put above, tranquil familiarity to being here. It’s a painful place, but soothing in the clarity of mind I find at times like this. It’s no coincidence that I respond well to constant reminders of my past mistakes. 

This is a time of year that often sees me slip into a state like this. When I was rudderless, disorganised and lost, it led me to spiral. In my directed and curated new normal, it’s like being in a trance or medatative state. I find myself in a controlled and pensive state. I think this is what you’re meant to feel when those memories arise. It’s still new to me being stable enough to handle them. All the same, I hope it does pass soon.

December 16th, 2019 – 446

Ok I may have messed up. Not 1K, no nothing so important. No, I may have screwed up my back because I am in agony today. It seems that I’ve pulled, bruised or torn something, and I’ve lost quite a lot of feeling in my left arm as a result. Also when the pain spikes, I start to feel woozy or light headed. So yeah no biggie. 

Ok I’m being facetious. I would hope that was obvious of course, but I’ll admit I’ve brushed off worse. I have to decide now whether I should go to A&E or not. On the plus side, it’s not a long walk. I work right next to the hospital, so if anything I have no excuse not to go. No excuse that is, until you consider waiting times. I don’t want to spend that long away from my desk. Also, I don’t want to get signed off work over this, and aside from painkillers I don’t see what else going there would do.

TSS is now at 63,000 words, and based on my current plan I’d say the final script is between 80K and 90K. I’ll write it to the former, then once I’ve typed up WHT return to it to get the polish right. That will either see it rise to 90K, or I’ll cut it to 75K – my usual floor. On my current pace, I should hit 80K by the 31st. 

Also, I decided to cut myself some slack: I will upload two chapters on Wednesday, not three. By shunting the whole schedule, I now don’t have a gap that I was planning to fill with A Planet Named George. That means I can write that at my own pace when I want to, and don’t have to rush it out over the holidays.

Right, I need some lunch, and then, well I’ll get through today. If I’m feeling like I’m going to pass out, I’ll take a detour on the way home to the DGH. Wish me luck.

December 14th, 2019 – 444

I only just clocked that day 450 is going to be coming up really soon. That’s a really weird thought, not because it’s a big number though it is, but because that means this “TSS Streak” has lasted for over a 10th of 1K. That’s insane, and I’ve got to wonder what that means going forwards. I’m not hung up on breaking the streak, but is this really the new normal?

What’s fascinating is if I write TSS today – about to – and tomorrow, that becomes a 9th of 1K. I was happy with a 70% efficiancy rating and here I am with 50 days of 100%. I doubt it’ll last all the way to the new year, but it doesn’t need to to be truly mind-blowing. It’s helped so much with the stress at the end of this year filled with change.

That all said, I’m super knackered, so I better get right to it if I’m going to get a decent night’s sleep.

December 13th, 2019 – 443

Goes to show how stressful polling day is that I forgot to hit publish on that last post after writing it. Not going to dwell too long on that, my suspicion was accurate, it’s sad but not unexpected. One of those things we need to put right when we can. But hey, that’s the nature of democracy. I have my strong disagreements with several of its tenants, but I believe in the need for it, and feel you have to show it respect especially when it comes to a result you don’t like. It wasn’t like if I’d gotten the outcome I wanted for the town my grievances with the system would be any less.

On writing, I still, somehow, wrote TSS yesterday. This whilst – oh yeah small thing, I may have fractured my arm. Probably not but I’m keeping an eye on it. If I type whilst keeping it as rigid as possible for now that avoids the pain, so I think it’s more a bruise or sprain. Still, bit crunchier in the noises it’s making than I usually like my bones to be. As you might expect from the lateness of this post, I slept in. Well, I slept at 7am until 2:30pm, so seven and a half hours, which isn’t fantastic, but I spent the day resting up. That means I still need to write.

Honestly, I thought I would fail to write TSS yesterday, or even write one of those long rambling Google Docs of my thoughts I used to do before writing long rambling blog posts. To be fair, this doesn’t count towards target; those old ones did, hence my distaste. I will write TSS now, but I think it’ll be lacing 1K into existing chapters. The scene I need to write is intense and important, and I want to be more awake to tackle it. Who knows though, I might change my mind when I open the doc. Wish me luck, and sorry about not hitting ‘publish’. I know it’s rare that happens and you, my dear imaginary readers, are, well imaginary. It’s about integrity though.

December 12th, 2019 – 442

I’ll keep this short, because you might have noticed I make a point of not politicising my blog, and as you can imagine I have a lot of work today. Still haven’t written my thousand words, but I will do so nearer to 9, as by then what will be will be. I have a hunch how this is going to turn out, and feeling more in control by having that helps.