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January 22nd, 2013

Late Start

I had some grand plans for this, my first post of 2013: summing up last year (with stats and everything), setting new goals, and generally being awesome. The last few weeks, though, have been very un-awesome (for the most part) so my grand plans have fallen by the wayside. But better late than never, and better something than nothing.

I've been pretty vague about what's going on in my life. Mainly because I don't think it really belongs on a public blog like this. But my plans for this year won't make much sense unless I explain, at least a bit.

First, I was finally diagnosed with extremely late stage Lyme disease last March (after being diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue for ~3 years). Since then I've been taking a truckload of supplements and antibiotics to try to get rid of it. It's worked for the most part--overall I was doing better than before--but then I started some really hardcore antibiotics in the fall, and they wiped me out. I'm still on them, and they make it nearly impossible to pursue writing or drawing. So, I'm not sure that I'll be able to set any real writing goals until I'm off of them (1-2 months from now). Instead my goals will be more broad, focusing on getting my life back together, so that I can hit the ground running once my insides stop rebelling.

[Just so this post isn't entirely depressing--things haven't been all annoying medical stuff this past year. Let's just say I needed to update my relationship status on Facebook about seven months ago. And yeah, he's the other reason I haven't been keeping up with my writing...]

That's the basics of where I am right now. Writing is on the back burner, so there won't be any progress on that by next Monday. But I will be putting together a concrete plan for the next two months so that I can work my way back up to where I was a year ago. Hopefully I can manage it.


Tuesday's Bad Habits

This weekend I sat down and started compiling all of last year's writing that I'd logged in 750words. I decided to do it by character and theme. Some were histories and back story for Chrysalis and a lot some were silly little fan fictions character studies. It was fun to read through them and laugh at myself.

After the fourth or fifth one, I noticed an interesting trend. On average, each idea, always incomplete, would take about five days to write and total around 20,000 words. Then I would move on to the next idea. Sometimes I would go back, start a new arc and spend five additional days writing 20,000 more words. I only did that about three or four times.

As I sat down to analyze my data, I realized I'm coming up on 250 consecutive days of writing. I haven't missed a day since May of last year. I've been logging my words with a fanaticism that borders on religious. 

On the one hand, consistency is key in this profession. You have to be willing work every day and you have to do it on your own because no one can make you do this if you don't really want it.  On the other, I've developed a bad habit--I'm using 750words as a reason not to seriously edit Chrysalis because I'm worried if I miss a day, I'll miss two, then four, then an entire month and I desperately don't want to lose momentum.

So I've decided I need to break it. Some time this week I need to let my streak lapse so I can focus on finishing this edit. I can mark my progress and awesomeness in other ways but I've got to let this bad habit go, along with my fear of losing momentum.

Obviously I've got this. I've written 250 consecutive days. I have discipline. I just need to focus it elsewhere.

So, fellow HoKers, what are your bad habits and what can you do to break them?

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