Erase and Rewind

The other night, between episodes of Weeds, I whined to my wife.

The impetus for my whining was the latest version of my query letter for Master of the House, which I had given her to look over the night before.  I felt like this version resolved the issues she'd had with the previous four version I'd given to her.  And I was right, it did, but it also created new issues.

I was a bit frustrated, not at Nicole, mind you, but at myself.  It's been two months since I was cut from the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest and I don't even have a query letter finished.  I also don't have a one page summary finished, which is something that's commonly asked for by agents.

The fact of the matter is that I haven't been working on either of these things as much as I should, and that's annoying.  I can chalk part of that up to sheer lack of desire -- writing these things is incredibly tedious.  But that's not really an excuse.

The bigger problem, really, has been this moderate sized overhaul of my life that I've got going on.  I've already talked about my plan to exercise some moderation when it comes to my alcohol consumption.  That's just one part of my mainstreaming process.

(Yes, I said "mainstreaming," as I feel as if these changes I'm making are putting me more in line with the life of the average person, as opposed to the stunted adolescence I've been holding on to)

During the last year that we lived in Los Angeles, I discovered working out.  More to the point, I discovered working out first thing in the morning.  It was something of a revelation.  I started going to the gym every morning before work which, back then, was Monday-Thursday, as I was only working part time.  Having a part time job also meant I had plenty of time to write, which was good, as Hellgate had just agreed to publish "Pray" and I was working on the first draft of Master of the House.

I don't think I ever felt as good -- physically, at least -- as I did over those months.  It was also necessary for me to stop any and all drinking during the week, because I had to get up to go to the gym the next morning (granted, back then I didn't have to be at work until 10:30, but still).

So I decided that if I'm cutting back on my drinking, and since we now own an elliptical machine that's not ten feet from our bed, I should get back to working out every Monday through Thursday...even though I haven't worked out regularly in at least a month.

This has all been a bit of a jolt to the system.  It's also cut back on my writing time, because a) I'm tired when I get home from work and just want to sit on the couch and b) I have to go to bed earlier.  That second point is a difficult one, because I can't just go to bed 7 or 8 hours before I need to get up, because I don't really sleep.  I usually need to medicate myself in some way to knock myself unconscious.

Which leads me to the next step in this continuing evolution of a man accepting his age and trying to improve himself: getting my insomnia straightened out.

Living in Los Angeles, none of these things were ever a problem.  I could get through the day being exhausted, even if I went to the gym because I had plenty of time to be lazy.  But in the suburbs there is always freaking something that needs to be done!

So there it is, my three part plan to make myself a better person: less drinking, more working out, actually sleeping more than 45 minutes at a time.  If any of this takes, it'll be a whole new world.