June 15th, 2021 – 993

Another day, another earlier target. This time I managed AM target, even if only just, and that’s a huge confidence boost. I owe that in part to the new diet, and my sleep getting back into a good rhythm. Of course, the heat still butchered my ability to drop off quickly, but not by much. I need 45 minutes to fall asleep, and 8 hours for a good night. Basically given awake/restless times, and a 7:55am wake up time, I have to realistically have lights out by 22:30 if I want to guarantee a good night. Ok ‘guarantee’ is strong; I had other reasons I couldn’t sleep properly yesterday. Just the whole untangling the mess of some projects that suffered in my latest dip. That they’re all out-of-work projects at least means there’s no rush, but I do want to get back to all cylinders as fast as I can.

MAL hit 70,000 words today, and I’m estimating that in the next 3,000 words I’ll have the All is Lost beat. On its current length, that would but the novel at about 107,000 words. That’s far too long, but I do have about 8-10K earmarked to cut. If I factor that in, I come out at about 90K. That’s much more like it, but it does also mean finishing this draft by the end of the month is a bit tight. We’ll see, but I’m putting a soft deadline of July 9th. I should be able to finish it sooner, but that would allow the novel to gain another 24,000 words, so 93K – 97K, the upper end if I bank my average extra words. That’s a reasonable target I feel. More important, I feel like I’m starting to get this novel a lot more now. But none of this is as exciting as yesterday’s breakthrough…

So I finally got around to playing with AWS Polly. It is a game changer. If you’re not familiar – entirely possible as you are imaginary my dear reader – Amazon Polly on in the Amazon Web Services suite, is a TTS – text to speech – service. TTS is a thing I’ve wanted to use for years, but whenever I try it sounds too robotic. The advantage is, as I am far more used to audiobooks than physical ones, what with my paper texture problems, I find this a much easier way to edit. And well, halting as it may be, AWS Polly’s Neural AI TTS is, amazing. It’s legitimately good enough I may release free audiobooks of the series using it. That makes my upcoming plans a little easier, and the start up biblically cheaper.

So yes, things are going well. No reason to be complacent but plenty to be optimistic. Life might finally be ok again. I hope so.