Heads Will Roll

The plan going forward now is simple: starting tomorrow, I’ll be using this platform to talk about anything but the C-Word.ย The writing blog will be back in April, as will the start proper of all my Patreon content. You can be totally reassured that at no point will I be selling myself based on the pandemic: a very snotty tweet sequence has just been thrown at Masterclass for doing just that. Seriously, no.

I am here for positive mental health and a sense of genuine progression. Technology is there to help, and that means using it in a far more positive manner than has been previously the case. It is very easy to get wrapped up in the negativity, just as it is to pretend nothing bad is happening and carry on regardless. To survive, everything must change. No really, it does, like it or not.

Time to throw away all that ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’ merchandise.

Four times this week a static bike has been used. That will be updated to seven days starting tomorrow. Some days will be more effort than others, but for now this is undoubtedly the best way to keep my legs in fighting condition. It elevates the baseline level of exercise from something most days to constant effort. It’s the equivalent of that walk to and from the Gym, or the walk outside that yesterday reduced me to tears.

The endorphin rush can come from anywhere, it doesn’t have to be walking through the forest, and once my brain’s better adjusted to the concepts we now find ourselves living with, it will come back. For now however, it is time to build mental strength and physical resilience, in a time where both matter more than anything else that could possibly be done. That space, to my left, just became the Gym.

Time to make it work for me.

Dead in the Water

That’s Donation #8 in the bag :D Doing it earlier in the day is not the way forward however: I managed to lock my keys in the house, felt a bit wonky immediately afterwards and am not quite sure that walking home was a good idea. However, I ate really well in prep for yesterday and this morning… well, let’s go back to last night first, because something new happened.

Once upon a time what happened last night would have put me back MONTHS. Today, once I’ve written this we’ll have a good couple of hours rebuilding a collection that was, by my own benchmarks, pretty ropey in parts. It’s also a testament to how far I have come as a poet in the last 12 months: the initial choice of submission may yet get done, we will see, but for now this is enough.

The title might be my greatest moment thus far.

Then there’s a short story that I hope to be able to first draft by the end of next week. It should have happened last week but there is, sometimes, no way of making creativity do the stuff you want to deadlines. I do at least have the idea sound and plotted, and as we’re working to a fairly tight word count, that does mean the writing itself won’t take forever. After THAT? I am giving serious consideration to taking March off.

If I say I’m going to do nothing, this is normally when the most productivity takes place: why, when I go away this weekend, the laptop comes with me cause then, if inspiration strikes, it’s time to just type and not care. The balance between needing to do stuff to deadline and just writing what you want is tough to reconcile when you have a brain like mine. To function correctly, there has to be some imposition of order.

However, what can then happen is that the pressure of the deadline makes everything else become far less attractive to complete. It is an odd situation to find myself in, and normally when it happens that’s all productivity summarily scuppered. Not this time, however, and that is allowing me to feel… well, surprisingly unfettered going forward. Whether it will be the commercial breakthrough I need is now largely irrelevant.

Whatever happens, my collection will be published this year.

colbert_numbers

I have no qualms about self-publishing. I can send the work then directly to real publishers as a visual CV, and anyone who bags a copy has the chance to own something that might one day hold some actual value. It’s a win/win with the only disadvantage being dipping into savings to make it happen. However, as a long-term investment, I feel it is worth doing. I may even Kickstarter the project as a result.

This is a step into the light that has been a very long time coming indeed.

COMMENT

Valley of the Dolls

Everything has gone out of the window since Monday, not even the Planner has been completed properly, and the reason is quite simple. There’s no need. If I’m going to undertake a month’s worth of major content, this week needed to be fallow. I have got my 5k submission sorted (just needs a light trim) and tomorrow we’ll get a month’s worth of the episodic short story back on the table. After THAT?ย It is three days of prep for Symphony which starts on Monday. It’ll all be on the IOW Website. You can look interested over there.

Friends Not Followers.png

Also, as a result of extensive studies, Twitter is no longer here to be a measure of anything except those people decent enough to hold a conversation without expecting summat in return. I’ve had enough of the clamour. Time to just interact with those people who actually care. That will undoubtedly see me haemorrhaging more followers but honestly, it’s been like that for six months now, and yet the figures are awesome.

It transpires you don’t need to have people following you to be successful, WHO KNEW?

240918

P.S.: After today’s Gym session? Weights are going up starting next week. Strength is undoubtedly improving. It’s ALL GOOD.

Lost in France

I’m back to the weight I was six months ago. However physically, I’m anything but the same. I ate my last chocolate before Christmas yesterday (with the reserved exception of my Birthday weekend, which is being planned out of my hands.) There will be the bare minimum ofย cake, crisps, bad junk or indeed excess sugar from now until December 25th.ย It’s not Draconian or unrealistic either. It is the only way to remove what I know is fat. I can see it, obvious and taunting in areas of my body that will soon become muscle, just like all those other parts of my body where the same is true.

It is time to truly redefine what I’m capable of becoming.

header60

Ironically I’m becoming more used to protein as time goes on, preferring rice to pastry, brown to white. Yeah, of course I’ll still crave because I’m human, but it is surprisingly simple to just stop and say no. Listening to my body is becoming an exercise in revelation, too: I’m capable of a lot more than’s currently possible if I simply start feeding myself better. It is all, like it or not, a constant exercise in self assessment. If I allow myself to give into the demons, they can and will utterly consume the good work that I’m doing. I realise that maybe, in times past, this is why faith was far more important than it is now to so many people. With someone looking down, judging your every action, it was far easier to be the good person, or not allow ‘temptation’ to sway you from the righteous path. I’m always impressed with those who seem to have everything under control. I’m always wondering where the catch is.

I know my shortcomings only too well. That’s most of my problem.

header61

The majorityย of the weight needs to shift from my waistline, which is traditionally the last place to ‘move’ through exercise, and so I’m going to start measuring myself in the same spot every week to see how things are progressing. I know what the number is, I’m not looking for a stupid reduction, or a set of stats that are hugely unrealistic. However, what this will do is give a notion of improvement away from actual weight loss, which I know now is completely irrelevant when fat is converting to muscle. I know I won’t go any higher than this ceiling, the question is now how far I can go back to what used to be the last consistent measurement before the kids were born.

My son is 16 on Saturday. This seems the ideal opportunity therefore to get serious with what gets eaten and drunk moving forward.