1.20.2019

A Belated New Years Resolution

I did not have much need for resolutions at the start of this new year, mainly because the ones I set about adhering to last year were still in play and going strong. I'm usually not very good at establishing resolutions prior to the start of a new year, mainly due to having my mind focused on other demands. And this distraction usually continues for several days into the new year, with no resolutions in sight.

If you'll recall, last year's resolution was to follow a vegan diet for health reasons. I did it and I am still doing it. I had thought following this diet would have a secondary indirect benefit of decreasing my body weight. That was partly true, but I plateaued (wow, that is a lot of adjacent vowels) about mid-year and couldn't get my weight below about 215 pounds consistently after that. So, in early October, I established what I guess we would have to call an "old year resolution." A one-off, if you will. I started using a fitness app to strategically track caloric intake and output with a goal of losing more weight. It worked, and by year's end, I was down below 200 pounds consistently. Blah, blah, blah.

The point being, I rocked my 2018 resolutions and I couldn't really find the time to think about 2019 resolutions. Last week, I was able to rest my mind and body on a trip to Florida, during which time I began to give more mental bandwidth to some ideas for resolutions to pursue in 2019. After writing a blog post that featured Stephen King in a cameo role, I decided that I'd like to resolve to do more writing - for its own sake, but also indirectly to try to finish work on the first draft of my science fiction novel. I have not fleshed out the specifics of this resolution, only the generality: to write more. If I am using Stephen King as a role model (and I am, because his non-fiction book on the art of writing is most salient to me), I'd like to carve out a specific time and place to write a few times a week. I really enjoy writing, but with the demands of graduate school and life in general, it's hard to do it seriously and regularly. I tend to write a few blog posts here and there, as time permits, to keep the writing machinery oiled and functional in my brain, and that certainly serves its purpose. However, much like daily meditation, I want to establish a schedule and flow to it. Based on all the research I have read on the best ways to write, pounding it out for a solid 3-4 hours without interruption seems to be the general consensus, with strong recommendations to cease all writing activity after 4 hours, due to the very low return on investment from wrung out writing neurons after that point.

So we'll see what happens. Today is Sunday and I have already been writing for close to 4 hours, mostly blog posts, but also a little bit of sci-fi novel outlining and revision of stuff I have already written for it over the past few years. So, I need to stop soon, in no small measure due to the fact that I have to learn a metric pantload of songs on bass guitar for a jam session at a pub later tonight, and I haven't rehearsed any of the material on account of being on a tropical vacation for the past week. Tomorrow is Monday, but it's also a holiday, so my intent is to pound out some writing tomorrow as well, and jump start this belated new years resolution.

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