My schedule has been bouncing back and forth quite a bit, lately. Mostly late, lately. Staying up later and later, waking up later and later, napping longer than expected, and so on. Been a bit unhinged, not even close to my semi-regular patterns (such as running a 25-hour day, slipping forward an hour a day, 6-8 hours a week) but totally off the map. Dukha.
Been eating too much, lately, too. I know I haven’t been blogging as much or as personally in the last several years as I once did, but I think I’ve mentioned, at some point in the last year, that Mandy and I have been working on improving our health, on losing weight and being more active. In the first 6-8 months we had great results, and by the end of January, Mandy and I had each lost 45 pounds and were doing light exercise regularly. In February I began strength training on my Bowflex, and my weight loss slowed down, nearly stalled out. In the last month or so of my depression, I’ve been overeating more and more. The app I’ve been using to track my eating/calories is still set to try to get me to lose 2lbs/week, but in the last week my overeating reached the point where, rather than barely maintaining my weight, I’ve gained several pounds back. 🙁
I’m suddenly procrastinating reading, a bit, too. Just a couple of days, so far, and I hope I can overcome it (I almost managed to reign in my eating, today) in the morning. Largely, this is due to the size of the books I’ve suddenly come across on my reading list. Julian Comstock, which I recently finished (after procrastinating with several other books (and a comicon) before completing it) was the first of these, and I knew it when I first opened it. Suddenly I was faced with pages packed with double the number of words of those of most every book I’ve read in a long while. Certainly since beginning my dystopian reading list. I actually counted words and lines and … it was actually double the number of words on the page, so the 400-page book wasn’t comparable in length to other 300-400 page books I’d been reading, but to an 800-page monster. This week I went to the library and picked up a random selection (not so random; I have a list on the library website which can auto-filter by “is checked in at my local branch” and i grabbed the first few of those) of three or four dystopian novels (to replace the 3 I read last week) to add to the three or four I already had checked out. I grabbed one from the stack which looked like a thriller (to change things up a bit) and looked like it was the thickness of any of the other 350-400 page books I’d been reading. The first thing I noticed upon flipping through it was that the type was tiny; it’s another double-density book. Then I noted that the paper was thin; it’s actually 550 pages. It’ll take me at least as long to read as 1100 pages of “normal” books – ie: on the shelf it looks like a normal size & length of book, but is as long as three other books. So I grabbed another of the new ones & found that it was as long as two “normal” books. And because I was looking at these things, I grabbed an actually-hugely-thick book I’d been procrastinating reading since I began this quest and discovered that it is roughly equivalent to five or six “normal” books. On the other side of this procrastination is a pressure to keep up the rate at which I read/finish books, reminded to me by Goodreads, which keeps a running tally and progress bar of my reading, in context of my intention to read 100 books this year. Every time I look at it, it says I’m several books behind pace. Every time I look at these ridiculously-long books, I envision myself falling even further behind. Which seems to create a sort of reader’s-block. The trick, I think, is to alternate normal books with these behemoths… and to power through the monsters, like any other chore.
I have managed to avoid alcohol, so that’s good. Sleeping poorly, eating too much, being blocked at work – these aren’t good, but at least I’m not simply, directly poisoning myself. I haven’t lost all self control; I’m only backsliding a small amount, so far.
((Oops. Just ate a giant bowl of marshmallow-filled cereal.))
Not doing well.
Could be a combination of factors. Could be the poor response to my last Kickstarter project, or the general lack of interest in the books I’ve actually already written. Could be the self-doubt gradually building the more and more I think about and plan my next two books; pessimism and worry and doubt upon doubt upon doubt. Could be money, could be sex, could be all the depressing books I’ve been reading, could be lots of things. Could just be the normal brain chemistry situation I’ve had my entire life. (That’s the most likely primary culprit.)
Anyway, it’s been a bit of a struggle.