Writing Update: Week 1

  • Stories Completed: 1/5
  • Words Written (Book): 0/200,000
  • Words Written (Short Story): 0/10,000
  • Words Written (Flash): 725/750
  • Words Written (Script): 0/30,000

So yeah, writing has not been very good to me either this week. College has been taking a toll on many things, and I just feel really overwhelmed. But I did write a flash story I was happy with, though the people at workshop didn’t understand stuff due to clarity issues in the piece. While I hate when that happens, since most of the time if it was cleared up the rest of the story would make sense, I am happy to get such critiques. Because I can’t be there for the reader to clear up any questions so the story makes sense, the story must make sense without my comments. So I feel a little annoyed, but a positive annoyed, because I know I can and will do better.

I’ve also been reading over the few thousand words of my revision for my book, and I think I may just start over. I only got 2500 words in before I stopped for a while, and I think that there is an important reason why. I really need to get my timeline fixed and set up well so things make sense, and right now I feel a little unclear.

So yeah, not much progress as far as word count, but I think understanding of my work and worldbuilding has been mildly productive.

Fitness Update: Week 1

  • Miles Ran: 7/150
  • Days Lifting: 41/200
  • Weight: 171 lbs

Rough week for me. This entire semester I’ve been trying to go to the gym consistently 6 days a week, but have averaged out about 4-5 days a week. While not terrible, it’s not where I want to be. I think I will hit 60 days of working out when the semester ends, but I’m not sure.

As far as eating habits go, I had some M&M’s, and let me tell you almost a month without a chocolately treat, M&M’s tasted awful. Made me sad, but it’s interesting how you can lose the taste for certain foods after a while of not eating them. And it’s not that I cut it out temporarily, I’ve just been balancing my diet and haven’t really been eating much sweets. But yeah, treats don’t taste great after not eating them for a while.

I started running on Friday, and my ankles were killing me. I don’t know what happened, but I suspect I overworked them on the calf press. So I have put running off to the side for now, while I recover my ankle.

As far as lifting, I don’t know man. This entire semester I’ve been in a bad minset to work out. There’s been next to no consistency and I keep making excuses. I feel a little pathetic, but that inspires me to be better. I had time to bring these miles and lift days up, but chose not to. And while I can’t run, I can still lift, and so I will.

Coming Soon: Ball State Dining Halls Ranked Based on Sandwiches

I’m big fan of sandwiches, and since I’m a student at Ball State University I decided to put my passion for sandwiches and good food to use. I will be ranking on a ten point scale five vital categories for a good sandwich.

  1. Taste- Simply how it tastes (including aftertaste)
  2. Presentation- How it looks and feels, and how I can hold it
  3. Fulfillment- How do I feel after eating said sandwich
  4. Price- Is it worth the price of the sandwich to get it
  5. Consistency- How often are the places open and how good are the sandwiches to make me want to go regularly

These categories will be ranked on a 0-10 scale, with 0 being worst and 10 being best. The best possible score will be 50 points, and that dining hall will be declared the best dining hall based on sandwiches. The dining halls in Ball State are:

  • Atrium
  • Bookmark Cafe
  • Elliott
  • Jamba Juice
  • Lafollette #1 (I don’t remember the names but will write them down when I make the actual post)
  • Lafollette #2
  • Lafollete #3
  • Micro Cafe
  • Noyer
  • Quiznos
  • Student Center
  • Tom John
  • Woodworth

I’ve already eaten at a few of these places, and know their sandwiches well, so the next few days I will go to the other restuarants and eat there, and when I am done I will report back with my findings.

Writing Goals: A Late New Year’s Resolution Part II

So this year I’ve been swamped with school, and so my writing has suffered for it. Though I have found inspiration in short stories. As I said, I’m wanting to write and publish 5 short stories before I send a draft of my book in. Last semester and this I have been developing two. I’m also considering flash fictions as well, as getting them published will add to the 5 story quota. Of course, if I get one story published and I finish my book, I may decide to send it in. Why not? Anyway, I’ll say that my goals for this year are this:

  1. Write 5 short stories and send in for publication
  2. Write 5 flash fictions and send in for publication
  3. Write full revision for my book (Approx. 200,000 words)

I’ll be updating every week about my status on writing. The first post update will be on Sunday. I’m going to assume the revision will be 200,000 words, and so as I will be writing 1000 words a day, I’ll write at the top of my updates as such:

  • 1/5 stories completed
  • 1000/200,000

Now, if the book ends shorter than 200,000 words, that’s fine and dandy (publishers are more comfortable publishing smaller books from newer authors anyway).

Also, since this has been talking about my book, I’ll also say that structurally, I’ve decided the series will be 12 books long, consisting of 4 major arcs, and each arc being 3 books long. This is the way the series has been going, and it has grown so much bigger than I ever imagined. I went from 3 books, to 5, to 6, to 7, to 10, and now to 12. And I’m much more comfortable at twelve because with how the story is going, and how big it all is, that is how I think it is best to tell it.

So yeah, twelve book series coming sometime.

Exercise Goals: A Late New Year’s Resolution

So technically I’ve been working on this stuff since New Year’s, but I thought why not put it all into one post. When it comes to weight loss and lifting, I’ve found having a specific weight or lift limit in mind for the year often leads to doing more damage to your body than good. I do still want to get to 140, but that is a goal that I recognize may take a while, the same for the running goal of 10 miles. So I’ll tell y’all what I want to do by the end of the year, and give you a weekly update (this will also be a thing with my writing).

My goals are:

  • Run 150 miles this year
  • Lift 200 days this year

So far I have run 7 miles, and lifted 41 days. For future reference I’ll write it like this:

  • Run: 7/150
  • Lift: 41/200

I’ve got a long way to go, but I’m excited to do it. Right now I’m running a half mile a day and I’m hoping to soon pick that up to 1 mile a day. I’m also working on speed strength so who knows it may vary.

Exercise!

So another important part of my life that I haven’t talked about is exercise. When I was a Freshmen in college, I weighed over 200 lbs and was sad and depressed. I was in a slump, and couldn’t find a way out. Then last year, I decided to do something about it. From January 2016 I started working out. I got a workout partner and we would go about 5-6 times a week. We’d lift and run. The end of my sophomore year came, and then my junior year started, and I got a new workout partner and we worked out about 3-4 times a week. By the end of December 2016, I lost 30 lbs and weighed 170. It’s been a huge accomplishment for me, and the change in my lifestyle helped accommodate working out. I would eat healthier foods, and snacked much less and overall have been active in living a better life. I’m more confident with myself than I’ve ever been, and I couldn’t imagine where I’d be if I hadn’t started working out.

Currently, I’m struggling a little bit on getting back to the 6 days a week grind like last year. It was a lot easier with a partner, and going alone is not as fun. Mostly this semester I’ve been going 4-5 times a week. Which, while not terrible, is not where I want to be. So I’m hoping to use this blog as a way to boost my responsibility in working out, and motivate me more. Much like how I was more motivated to write, I want to be more motivated to work out. Use this blog to hold me accountable.

So here are my two goals I have for this year:

  • Weigh 140 by the end of the year
  • Run 10 miles

I need to really push myself to get to these goals. Right now I’m plateauing hard at 170, and I need to break it down. I know the healthiest way is to lose a pound a week, and there are about 30 weeks left in the year, so I think if I start now, and in earnest, I will get to 140.

My sophomore year I was keeping track of what I ate and the calories, and that’s how I lost 20 lbs in one semester. Of course those are the easy pounds, but never the less holding myself accountable worked. I haven’t been doing that since, and I’ve also been cheating and making exceptions too much. I need to make fewer exceptions, and drive down to 140. I know I can do it, so I will. And if I end up at the end of the year at 150, I won’t be mad, I just know I need to lose the weight.

So hopefully this blog will motivate me and hold me accountable for my health and fitness just as it did with my writing. No day like today is my motto, and it really is no day like today to start being healthier!

Book Update: First Draft Done!!…And other updates

*Blows dust off old blog.

Did you think I’d forgotten you, readers? Perhaps I had, but anyway I’ve returned to revive this old blog and tell y’all that I’ve finished the first draft of my book! Technically, I finished it last summer, but I’ve been so busy I’ve just been putting off making an update on how everything turned out. So enjoy my copypaste of a Facebook post I made when I finished the draft.

*Facebook Post: July 20, 2016

THE BOOK IS DONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!*
48 chapters
195,112 words
273 pages (~550 book pages)
1 year and 2 months of writing 1st rough draft
7 1/2 years of planning, worldbuilding, drafting and throwing out really bad drafts, rewriting, reworldbuilding, replanning, reducing, reusing, recycling, all that jazz.

All completed!! I finally did it! I have finally written my book and finished it!! I’m unbelievably excited about this! Though if you will notice the asterisk beside the exclamation points, you will notice something. I’ve finished writing the first draft, and now comes the hard part of editing. Then it will be all the businessy stuff with agents and publishers and bookstores and what not. (2017/18 release maybe?)

Idk, but I don’t wanna worry about that just yet. I have to actually well and truly finish the book before it is well and truly done and published and out there. However, this is still a huge accomplishment for me. Something I have been working on since I was 13 and riding on a bus to a winter drumline competition. Part of me never thought I would get to this point, but I am so happy that I finally have a finished draft. A beginning, and an ending, and a middle with so much stuff mixed in I sometimes get lost in all the threads I made. But at the very least, it is done, and I will keep working to polish it up and make it publish-worthy. No clue when that will be, but if I have the first part done, I don’t see why I can’t do the rest! Here’s to Phase 2 and beyond!

*And to now

So yeah look at good ole optimistic me. I would love to say I’ve been writing the revision super hard, but honestly I haven’t. Not that I’ve given up, but my writing professor really said something that spoke to me. Houses before mansions. Basically the concept that working on smaller pieces of fiction will help you in maker larger works. So for the class we were writing short stories, and I put my book off to focus on them. That way I would make something that has a definite beginning and ending. In doing this, I’ve been able to pinpoint problems in my book.

So last semester and for this time this semester I’ve been taking a break from my book and working on short stories. I’m going to write five by the end of the summer and turn them in to publishers so that I will have a portfolio to give an book agent. I have two short stories close to finished, and am thinking about three more. I’m planning on finishing my revision by the end of the year, and then during the first few months of 2018 I’ll be editing, and by May I plan on sending the draft to agents and getting into the business of writing.

Starting tomorrow, I will be writing 1000 words a day again on the new revision. I’m excited to see where things go throughout this year.

Also, while this blog started out for mostly writing, I will be posting more about aspects of my life. Since writing is my passion it will be a focus, but I’ll be talking about more than just writing from now on.