February 3rd, 2020 – 495

First booked day off of the year today. This was a weird holiday arrangement this year, with a week I lost in October to illness, a week to the election and 7 days to Common Ground Woodcraft Camp at the end of this year. That last one isn’t a loss of course; I can’t wait! But it did add up to almost all of my holiday allowance between them. That’s less than ideal for my natural rhythm. This isn’t something I like to talk about a lot, but I have some issues when it comes to fatigue.

We have no idea what causes them. I’ve been through my diet, through untangling this weird fatigue from depression – mercifully in the rearview mirror at this point. I exercise more, I eat healthy foods, including enough protein. I sleep in such a regular pattern that I get up at the same time to the minute each morning and get 8 hours of sleep a night. And with all these factors in place for a month now, I have to say: I still get exhausted doing the most minor tasks. The kind of things that shouldn’t knacker you. 20 minute walk? Sure that might knock you a bit. That plus morning prep and a few five-minute jaunts adding up to all my limbs being on fire and my vision going blurry? Less normal.

This was something that held back the writing for years. I could go a week in that blurry state and not register anything within it. A lot of that got exacerbated by bad lifestyle choices, but those now absent, the phantom of that lack of energy still lingers. At some point when money is less tight I’m going to try a gym membership, and in the meantime more exercises at home, but even when I did those things in the past it stuck around. I feel like if I could overcome that hurdle, I could go up to 2K a day without much pain. But that involves solving something that has stuck around for a good 9 or so years now.

WHT to bring it back to writing is going well. 38,000 words in and I am nowhere near the halfway point, so I think this is likely another 100K+ novel before edits. After edits, I am expecting it to be 85K. I am ruthless when it comes to trimming the fat. It’s one of my greatest assets as a writer; told to kill my darlings, I break out the chainsaw. Even so, it does make the March 11th soft deadline a bit tricky if I shoot that far over. That makes ‘End of March’ more plausible, but I can’t finish all 14 books by the end of 2023 if I use up my entire buffer on one project. I have maybe 40 days leeway tops to work with. Again EO-2023 is a soft deadline – it’s not like I have a publisher breathing down my neck. But if I pull this off, it’s a big neon sign saying ‘You can rely on me producing you a lot of content‘ to any agents in the wings.