Deadbeat dad

Boy do I feel like one. I haven’t written in several weeks now. I know pretty much what I want to do next for Untethered, but I haven’t made the time for it. I though that while coming down here to LA to visit my mom I would find or make time for it, but I haven’t. I wish there were more time in the day…. like, say, 28 hours a day so that I could take the extra four hours to do stuff.

Coming down to LA pretty much is a no-go for anything creative that needs focused attention. Maybe it’s a cultural thing, or maybe it’s just lack of awareness, but my mom tends to come talk to me whenever she feels like it regardless of what I’m doing. I could be sitting on the couch watching a volleyball match, or my favorite show, and she often sits down next to me and just starts talking to me. Does she not notice that I’m watching something? Additionally, I could be working on my laptop, and she will just start talking to me. It’s one thing to handle constant interruptions while I’m working. That doesn’t really need much creative energy, but my writing sure does. Occasionally she will ask me if I’m working (long after she has started to talk to me). I’ve accepted that this is how she will always be, and it doesn’t bother me anymore, but it sure does hamper my productivity.

I hope to get back to my writing and post something by next Sunday. That’s seven days from now. It seems like plenty of time. I just need to schedule my block of writing time around the long hours at work, and work from home, working out at the gym, my favorite scifi tv shows, social life, sleep, and also my game-of-the-week. I think I’ll sacrifice my game-of-the-week, which is an idle game anyway in hopes that I can get back on track with my writing. I read a few posts in someone’s blog that really inspired me to want to write again, and I know that I need to make the time to write regularly anyway if I want to ever get anywhere.

Fingers crossed… Maybe I’ll do some writing tonight when everyone else is asleep. I always say that anyway…

I’m getting fat

It’s now been thirteen days since I tore my calf. Friday last week I was down in LA and asked my brother, the family PT, to check it out, and he recommended that I stay in crutches for probably two more weeks and then get assessed again before trying any rehab. In the meanwhile, I can do a few sets of pointing my toes briefly to keep the scar tissue that is forming inside the calf from getting too out of control, if it doesn’t hurt. Otherwise, minimize my walking and driving.

I’m still walking around with a crutch even though I feel pretty lame with it (no pun intended). Hobbling around at home is fine, but when I need to stand or walk for an extended period of time, the crutch really makes a difference, so I guess I still need it. Hopefully next week I won’t need it anymore. I can totally see why people let themselves get fat. Something happens to make you gain some weight, and it’s just easier to keep gaining more weight rather than work it off. I don’t see myself doing any real exercise for the next two weeks either. Maybe after that I can begin rehab, but that won’t really be much cardio, so oh well. There will be more me to love. One thing I’m hoping is that next week I’ll be able to catch up on my writing. I’m already falling behind because of all the other things that are going on, especially with work, but maybe they’ll calm down enough for me to work on my own stuff.

Medial head gastrocnemius tear

So….. I did not post anything last night. Unfortunately, on Saturday I tore my right calf at the Marin Volleynation tournament. As far as I can tell, it’s a tear of the medial head, a common tennis injury. I definitely should have stretched more, but on the plus side, at least it wasn’t my achilles tendon. I’ve often heard of the pop or the sensation of getting punched in the league, but feeling is better than hearing or reading about it. My research indicates that I should be able to have a full recovery in 4-6 weeks, though I may not be ready for sports in that time. Also, and more importantly, I won’t need any surgery if I take care of myself. So, I’ll spend the next few days at home off my feet. I do have a crutch right now, but not walking (and RICE) is still better than hobbling around with the crutch.

In the meanwhile, since I will have some extra time, I’ll try to get the next part of Untethered posted in the next few days. Last week I had no time, and this weekend was busier than it’s been in a few weeks, so I definitely have some catchup to do.

Encouraged!

I’ve successfully kept up with Untethered for two weeks in a row. On the surface it seemed like a good idea to try to write 8-12 pages every week while working at a startup (though I’m working fewer hours than I used to), playing volleyball twice a week, working out once a week, and trying to have a social life. I just had to give up most of my TV-watching and video game-playing habits that I used to have. I tried to hit an average of 2500 words for an average of 250 words per page, an older standard for hitting 10 pages, but that ended up being really short because Google Docs, where I do all of my drafting, counts all words, not just three-letter or longer words. *sigh* So, I’m now aiming for 3500 or so words. Part 1 was about 2800 words as measured by Gdocs, and part 2 was around 4000. 4000 feels right, so maybe I’ll try to hit 4000 from now on, not even 3500. In page terms, I think now I’m trying to hit 12-15 pages per week.

A friend and coworker showed me a link to a reddit AMA by Andy Weir on The Martian. Reading through it, I was really encouraged by Andy’s success. Basically, The Martian is his first book, and he wrote it over the course of three years. Three years! I hope to get all the content of my book written in under one, week by week, and then spend a few months revising it to create a version of it I’d be happy to self-publish. Or not. Maybe I won’t even self-publish when this is all said and done because I’ll have fallen in love with the serialized format. Speaking of which, The Martian apparently was first published chapter by chapter in serialized format! I was using this format as a tool to write more frequently, but reading about other peoples’ successes sure is exciting!

I’ve also been researching sources of serialized fiction out there, and there is quite a lot. Any simple google search gets you results like these:

  • https://theonlinenovel.wordpress.com/where-to-read-or-list-serials/
  • http://webfictionguide.com/
  • https://theonlinenovel.wordpress.com/2013/06/27/publishing-your-own-serial-what-wordpress-com-has-that-blogspot-doesnt/

It’s a whole new world…. I’m greatly enjoying chatting to some of my friends about what I’m trying to accomplish. Once I get a few more parts posted, I’ll even start marketing a little bit to get a little bit of a larger viewing base. I’ve learned quite a lot about taking advantage of social media (though I loathe it), so I may as well put that knowledge to good use.

Hello again

Several years have passed since I last posted to this site. I love to write, but I haven’t had much to say. I don’t generally consider my life to be very interesting, and I haven’t felt a need to pour out my heart and soul in the recent past, but I’ve finally found a reason to dust off these pages once more and even give everything a facelift. Having a spent a few hours on this entire process, I’m pretty pleased with the look and organization of this place.

I’ve decided to embark on a new project. I’ve been feeling the bug to write for quite some time now. It’s fair to say that from way back in January, I’ve needed a creative release, and as a friend said to me recently, though I had already decided to do this, “Start writing sooner rather than later.” So yeah, I’m writing again. Finally. My new project is a serialized novel. I’m horrible with concise summaries, so I just took a crack at quick description for the category. At the moment I’m calling it Untethered so if you are interested in exploring it, just click on the menu item at the top of this page. Well, soon I’ll make that the default landing page, so simply visiting this site will drop you into my little serialized novella.

Why serialize it? I’d like to actually churn out novels for the rest of my life, but at this point, I’m too busy with work and my social life to devote the time that really requires. Plus, I was never very good at staying committed to projects. With writing, I definitely fall into the trap of revising infinitely. I hope that by limiting myself to bite-sized chunks, that I can produce something that I can be proud of in a reasonable timeframe. For this novella, I plan to post 8-12 page entries every Sunday night, three weeks a month. So, at the end of a year, I would have approximately 360 pages done, more than enough for a decent storyline. Fingers crossed. If I tried to publish something of that size as one product, at this point I would never finish it. This I know.

Another reason why I’m posting this on a blog is because I’m curious if people will find it interesting. Will I be able to create a following? Knowing that some people like what I’m writing, and are looking forward to the next installment, will no doubt be quite motivating, so I hope to dip my toes into the public pool to see if I am able to get any traction. Even a handful of avid fans would keep me going. I’m a little bit relieved that I came across this article in the Washington Post.

It’s even from this year! TL;DR: The serialized format of novels is not dead. Yay!

Anyway, thanks for reading this. If you stopped by looking for an interesting story to follow, then I hope you’ll find Untethered to be exactly that. I’ve disabled comments here because that tends to be a cesspool of spam. If you want to chitchat with me, you can find out how to reach me in the right sidebar.