March 21st, 2021 – 907

Another late post but I do not want to keep chaining short ones, so here goes for a more substantial entry. First off, I am writing late but it’s still 9 minutes to midnight here, so far from the worst full wrap on target. Second, I feel like what I wrote for TWO yesterday was so bad, I wrote today’s chapter in a style that means I can just delete the last one on the rewrite. It’ll sting to lop off 1,400 words but who knows, maybe I can save some. I’m not holding my breath, I was rubbish over this weekend.

The flat is starting to get untidy again, which is a frustration. The interesting thing about having one living space outside the bedroom rather than a whole seperate office, is that I can procrastinate by tidying between work tasks. Yes today was a Sunday but I work on Sundays. Actually I work every day of the week. Yeah, I just reread that too and realised that is a teensy bit of a red flag. That’s ok, that’s what this blog is for, I ramble for my Imaginary Readers and at times like a rubber duck I find the problems in my internal code. Turns out one of them is I should acknowlegde my workaholic status and do something about it.

The interesting thing is my productivity is awful at the moment. I think I’m on such low battery that I’m working round the clock to compensate, and not getting any energy back because, well I’m always working. It’s good to do a bit of work on something each day – it’s kind of the entire point of 1K, that doing a little at a time is healthy and helps keep perspective. Even so, I could afford to sanctify my weekends more. Maybe when I’m back in a real office that’ll work better. It could even be that I should consider going back into the office now, after a successful day last Thursday volunteering at the covid testing centre.

My main hang up is a selfish one: I really don’t want to risk getting the ‘long covid’ symptoms. But in a way, I’m getting all that brain fug by you know, never leaving the house and never switching off from work. Ever. One I need to think on…

March 20th, 2021 – 906

Another rough day. My mood spent most of the day in the gutter and isn’t much better now. I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue got me though the worst of it but target still proved a slog. I think I need to have a lie in tomorrow of only to guarantee a full night’s sleep. Grim but, what can you do. Sorry for the spree of short posts of late. I really am trying to recover.

March 19th, 2021 – 905

Today I hit 900 consecultive diary entries, which is a nice achievement and one made all the better by being before Midnight. Are you meant to capitolise midnight? I don’t know but I refuse to be consistant. I’ve also been working a bit on that video game brackets project Imaginary Readers will remember from the closing months of last year. And I think I will capitalise that from now on. But I will alternate spellings of capitelise apparantly. I’m clearly in an odd meta mood so I should go to bed already. But hey it’s good to be in good spirits. Finding out about Iain Pattinson did leave me feeling devastated, but I’ve managed to bounce back. How? Well funnily enough, thanks to his writing. The news ended up being the kick I needed to get back into listening to I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue when I’m down, something I haven’t done with any consistancy since Tim Brooke-Taylor’s death. I do not know how I coped without my ultimate source of comfort for a year.

TWO hit 63,000 words today. With an estimated final word count of between 86,000 abd 88,000 words, and a sprint to the finish of 3K minimum likely, I will finish some time around the 9th of April. Pleanty of time before my birthday. By then, fingers crossed, I may just be back on my feet. Here’s hoping.

March 18th, 2021 – 904

Ok this is not going great. I’m still pre Midnight but I’m slipping later and later. Sorry for yet another short post but I have to at least try for an early ish night. This was a bad week, a really bad one. I just hope I can salvadge what was so close to a victory before last Sunday evening happened…

March 17th, 2021 – 903

Ok in spite of how much the news on Sunday knocked me for 6 and in spite of how much my routine has slipped, I am still holding steady right on the edge of sustainable. I have to go right to bed to maintain it so, again, another short entry, but this is better than slipping into late night targets and the well of despiar that is chaining 4 hour nights of sleep in a body that demands seven and a half to function at all. So yeah, I am keeping my head above water, my work inbox empty and my mental health just about together. And I also managed to write some decent words of TWO tonight. Everybody wins. Please, for the love of god write early tomorrow…

March 16th, 2021 – 902

Good news: no migraine, false alarm. Bad news: I’m starting to come apart in the evenings again. Sorry I know yesterday’s post was short too but I keep leaving this so late this week. I need to fix my routines. Again…

March 14th, 2021 – 900

I really wanted today’s post to be a positive one. Yes 900 is an arbitary milestone but it’s a big one, and it also marks more or less the point I started not just surviving but went back to feeling life was pleasent again. I had a lovely day getting to see mum, which even though I’m in a single household bubble with her I don’t do anywhere near often enough. Today was going great. And then I found out that Iain Pattinson died a month ago today, and I hadn’t heard the news. It’s, fair to say that hurt. A lot.

For the uninitiated, Iain Pattinson was the main writer for the scripted parts of I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue. Long time imaginary readers are likely reading that and getting some idea of just how much this news hurt, after my tribute to Tim Brooke-Taylor almost a year ago. In a painful irony, I only found out because I was rereading Tim’s obituary for what must be in the hundreds of times now, and it led me to Google the show. I can’t tell you what my heart did when I read the words on my screen, because honestly my brain just, stopped. It must’ve done something though because man, it’s aching now.

When I feel down, or overwhelmed, Clue is the one thing that lifts me out. It makes the dark times brighter. Even when this kind of sadness, so directly linked to the show grips me, it manages to lift me above the clouds. Thank you Iain. I never did get the chance to meet you, but you are probably one of the most influential writers in my life. I aspire to even come close to the comedy you made look so easy.

March 13th, 2021 – 899

Ok real talk, I know I’m late to the party but who cares:

WHY DOES THIS WORK? Not just the beat but in a messed up way the beat too? It’s infuriating and at the same time it’s become my go to cheer-up track. Ceritified, bop.

Ok these asides at the start of posts are getting ridiculous now. I’m finishing up today’s quota of TWO and I can’tlisten to this while I do, so I guess call it me getting the song out of my system. Anyway, you may wonder why I’m posting when I haven’t finished writing TWO for the day, but I hit target hours ago with a mix of TWO and another project. And I also just kinda felt like blogging now rather than later so, I mean it’s my blog. No one reads this anyway I’ll do what I want. Devote the entire screen when you open the article to an absurd YouTube video sure, why not?

This week – I start mine on a Sunday – is the first one since October I’ve gotten 8 hours of sleep every night. Of note, I also got up at the same time each day, and I was in bed lights out before midnight each day too. That’s a great sign that hasn’t translated very well into the real world. Seriously, I’m on my fourth coffee of the day and I’m still tired, what gives? The whole deal with caffiene is it supresses your brain’s sense of fatigue or tiredness or whatever, I’m not a geologist, so why after a great week of sleep am I still exhausted?

It’s exercise, everyone knows it’s exercise, I know it’s exercise, there is no point in delaying the big reveal that not exercising enough makes you tired. So yeah I think I know the answer: I’m not exercising enough. Bet you didn’t see that coming, what a curveball. Ok ripping on myself for not fixing an obvious problen aside, I am a little unsure what to do to fix it. On the one hand I more or less answered that question: exercise more. On the other, I did today, and I am still exhausted. Aha, there’s your curveball, betcha thought you were real smart there bucko. What the hell am I talking about? I do this, I get tired, I get weird. It’s like I’m in ‘2am syndrome’ mode except it’s 10pm.

I did some maths on TWO today, when I wasn’t being weird, and I found out I’ve paced the book really well. Not only should I hit the wordcount I wanted on this rewrite, but the midpoint is at least within 500 words of the exact middle of the wordcount. That is satisfying in a way hard to put into words. It would be easier if I wasn’t such a hack of a writer but go figure. I’ve also been re-reading my friend Amb’s novel for them as a beta reader and by god, it is fantastic. I envy how they managed to get me welling up and emotional on the 6th page of the book. I cannot compete with that, so I guess, good thing I’m not competitive.

Ok I really need to write now…

March 12th, 2021 – 898

I’m, ok? I think I’m ok anyway. When I did some reading of my weeks gone by and where my good and bad patterns come up, a clear picture emerged. Saturday through Tuesday midday I am ok. Tuesday afternoon to Wednesday morning I start to struggle. By Wednesday afternoon the batteries are getting pretty low. Thurday I crash, and Friday I fester. That doesn’t mean I don’t get any work done in the latter half of the week; I’m pretty consistant at turning out work no matter my mood. My mental health though keeps ending up in tatters by Thursday. If I were self employed the answer would be easy: work until 6pm picking up odd out of hours tasks, and call Wednesday a weekend day. Weekend Wednesday is pretty well explained by this video, but I can’t really do it in my current job as, well I don’t set my hours.

So what can I do failing that? In the short term, it’s hard to say, but I did find this morning a bit easier than the usual Friday. I keep talking as if you can see the time these posts go up, but you can’t; for context, despite this being a Friday, I’m typing this at 11:35am. That’s all my 1K tasks done and me in full on workmode now before we even reach the afternoon. I’ll always work every day, but on bad days I end up having to make up hours, less in my job, more in my writing as I end up hitting target super late. My new sleep routine has got to be a part of this shift, and odds are I am seeing the benefits at last of a restored routine of 8 hour nights with a consistant wake up time that isn’t 7am. But I did do something else differently today.

When I got to my desk, I found myself hungry. This has been happening more and more the last few days, which is weird as being hungry in the morning is not a sensation I’ve ever experienced. Sure I’ve had breakfast habits at times but they were always forced, always based on external not internal cues. Being hungry as a cue is new to me, and interesting too, as this is by far my earliest full slate in a while. Now to be clear, I’m not a breakfast convert just yet, but the idea is intriguing. I didn’t have anything super healthy: it was a cream tea but with coffee. I know, I’m a hethan and I can feel my cornish ancestors judging me. Still I’d be mad not to consider more experimentation here.

I added 1,550 words of content to TWO, so today was a very good day for writing. The scene I added introduces one of the biggest twists of the story too, and I’m reasonably happy with how it came out in the first typed draft, so much so that I gave the chapter the coverted “middling going on strong” label. That makes it one of only five of the twenty three chapters so far to get some variant of the ‘strong’ label. Of course that’s subjective, just because I think it’s strong does not mean the average reader would, but I’m pretty good at spotting my own weaknesses even if I don’t root them all out on the spot when I do. Always open to intense critique, but slow at times in fixing issues because I don’t spend enough time on editing. That is why I made this the ‘Year of Editing’, though I don’t think I posted that anywhere on 2Y1K so, I’m positing it now, almost six months late. But maybe I did, I’m too lazy to go back and check.

…Which kinda proves my point about not going back often enough…