The Rule of Thirds

20190203-DSC_0099

The Rule of Thirds.

Status: good. feeling great, actually. happy. Didn’t skip the vitamin D regimen on Sunday like I did the previous one, so I wasn’t teetering on the edge of depression like last week Monday. Need to remember not to do that and stick with The Plan.

Writing.

Another very good day of writing yesterday. The ‘up and at ’em’ routine is working better. I’m discovering that my word count for the comic book script is higher than the prose, which is to be expected. Building momentum first thing in the morning positively affects self-esteem and encourages me to move forward, so I’ve found the payoff/incentive I need to sustain this model. I am, however, finding that I’m still fading in the afternoon. I’ll try a quick meditation after lunch to see if that helps. Two other things which stick out:

  1. I’m way happier when I’m writing and I need to spend some time figuring out how I can do this full time, i.e. for a living, without pushing myself into the land of poverty. Because, you know, I like money.
  2. I also need to allow myself some time to daydream – that seems to be the best way for ideas to germinate and to work past the sticking points in the story, and I’ve hit a few of those over the last few weeks. I write and write until I don’t know what happens next and then I have to stop. Which is frustrating, but I think this is part of the creative process, so I need to be patient with it.

Tenant.

Aaaaaaaand they’re back with another list of To Do items. I honestly want to take that nit-picky list, set it on fire, take a piss on it and then return the remains of that list to them. But I won’t do that. The key here is to separate Signal from Noise, so I’ll tackle the legitimate items and then politely decline to address the rest. I’m seriously entertaining the idea of terminating the lease and then placing the unit back on the market. I mean, it would make life a little easier to have an available place to utilise while I make the transition from Here to There. That way I won’t have to source an alternative, and I can focus on upgrading and renovating the unit, which I want to do anyway, without having to disrupt the tenant’s living space.

I’ll mull this over some more.

Nikon D3400
1/100 sec
f/5.6
55mm
ISO 100

…………………………….

Advertisements

Born Again

20190206-DSC_0003

Every morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters most.

Status: good. still dragging myself out of bed, but good. Taking a little too much time to get ready to go to the “office”, but at least I’m getting up and putting myself in an optimal position to be productive. I’ll call that a win.

Writing.

Excellent day yesterday. I’m repeating myself, but full credit to a good start to the day which set me up for later success. I need to remind myself of this every time I don’t feel like going through the morning ritual and just want to lounge around reading and drinking coffee when I first get up. Churned out three solid, usable pages of the comic book script which I think is a reasonable expectation for someone who is just at the beginning stages of learning how to do this. Production varies wildly, but the fastest writers will produce five pages per day, or about four books per month. The slowest will be one page per day, or one book per month. I’m going to call this a win.

On that note, I appreciate that not every day will be like this. Creating art can be frustrating and disappointing, but days like yesterday confirm what I’ve always suspected: I love writing. I just love the whole process and it’s what I really want to with the rest of my life.

Opportunity.

That said, I will need to detour slightly while I work on establishing myself. The call yesterday with my network contact went well. They have an open position available, but there are a few hurdles to clear. It’s multi-jurisdictional, which is attractive to me. The organisation is good, and I know some of the key players. The position is a bit more junior than I’d like, and as such it likely won’t meet my salary expectations, or match the offer received from the other company, but let’s see how this plays out.

Ok, let’s get on with it………

Nikon D3400
1/30 sec
f/3.5
18mm
ISO 400

…………………………………

Making Beautiful Things

20190206-DSC_0021

I long so much to make beautiful things. But beautiful things require effort and disappointment and perseverance. 

Status: good. kinda. Was awake at 2:30 am this morning and couldn’t get back to sleep. Should have just gotten up and started my day, but I typically run out of juice by the time mid-morning rolls around and then I end up sleep walking through the rest of the day, so decided against it and stayed in bed. Not sure what was rummaging around in my brain which forced me awake at that un-Godly hour, and I was WIDE awake, but it happened. Best not to dwell on it, I think I’ll just focus on today’s tasks instead.

Writing.

Another good day yesterday. The word count on my journal/blog is slowly increasing, as is the word count on my actual story work. I started keeping track of my word count back in December and can see an improvement from then ’til now. I’m much less anxious about the writing and I’m finding it easier to get into the flow. I’m learning to relax and just let it flow out of me.

I’ve set aside the short story first draft which I completed last week in order to let it marinate, and will pick it up again next week to start work on the second draft with a fresh set of eyes. That’s what Stephen King says you should do, so I’m going to defer to his good judgement and experience. Started working on the comic book script which I’ve had kicking around in my head for, oh, about 15 years or so. Realised after completing four pages that I’d rather be writing something else – the Robert E Howard short stories I’m currently reading have awakened my love for the genre, so I’d like to do a little exploring in that space – but, I’m going to finish this one first. Which is what Neil Gaiman says you should do, finish what you start. So, maybe it’s best to follow that advice.

Opportunity.

It’s gone quiet on the offer front, so I reached out to them yesterday to see if they have finished their pre-employment screening process and also asked about next steps. I mean, I think I should be signing some kind of employment contract before I start? I did that last time around, started without having a contract in place, and I regret doing it. Would prefer that we follow the process in the proper order this time around.

Things also went quiet on the contact front, so I reached out to them thinking that the reason for the silence was a lack of interest, but that wasn’t the case. I’m due to have a conversation with them tomorrow about potential roles and how I can add value. My preference is to stick with the offer, but I think it’s best to have a backup plan if it falls through. So, let’s see where this conversation takes us.

I have more to say, but I think it’s best just to get on with it…..

Nikon D3400
1/60 sec
f/4.5
32mm
ISO 200

……………………………..

Monday Thoughts

20190203-DSC_0076

“Our life is what our thoughts make it” — Marcus Aurelius

Status: jesus, i’m tired. I’m more tired than I should be. I didn’t have a big weekend and I’m still not drinking at all. Was out Saturday night, but got a good night’s sleep. Or so I thought. Spent most of the day yesterday reading. I’ve slipped into lethargy, and perhaps it’s because I let my schedule slip and didn’t do any writing over the weekend? I’m thinking maybe I should do a little bit every day. Which brings me to….

Meditation.

I’ve arrived at the section of the How To book which addresses this very thing: lethargy. Timely. The Universe is sending me a message, heh. In any case, I’ll incorporate this into days where I’m feeling lethargic like this. I always blamed it on the hangover, but I’m seeing that’s actually not the case. So, what’s the cause? Don’t know at this stage. Need to explore this a little further.

Tenant.

Spent my Sunday getting abused by my tenant via email. The emails are now pure noise and the threats are getting more direct. I’ve scheduled the maintenance guy to access the unit this week to remediate the issues, or perceived issues, but that knowledge hasn’t placated the tenant at all. They only seem interested in making me feel uncomfortable. This is also something which is addressed in the meditation How To book, so this is also timely. The Universe, dropping knowledge, heh. Need to focus on the techniques in the book which show me how to separate signal from noise.

Date.

This was better than expected. During the course of the evening she told me that she had lied about her age on the dating app. You and everyone else on there, I thought to myself. It didn’t faze me, I’ve come to expect it from folks who pass a certain milestone in life. In any case, it was a great meal and great restaurant. She recommended it, so I’m super grateful for that. The conversation was pleasant enough; we got along well and there weren’t any awkward pauses or uncomfortable silences. I didn’t get her relationship backstory; I don’t know if she had been married in the past. She did say that she was trying to “put herself out there” after the last relationship ended a few years ago. Gut feel that this is a slight fib, suspect it may have ended more recently than that.

One thing that really impressed me was when I asked for the bill at the end of the evening she turned to the server and asked them to split it in half. I was actually going to pay for dinner, but she didn’t want that. She wanted to pay her own way. There was no belly aching or passive aggressive cold-shoulder punishment like I’ve had in the past when I’ve suggested we split the bill. It was like two friends having dinner and then automatically splitting the bill at the end of the evening, because that’s what you do. I can’t tell you how rare that is, and how refreshing.

I’m not going to pursue this any further, but still, it was a good date.

Nikon D3400
1/100 sec
f/9
55mm
ISO 100

……………………………….

Transformers

DSC_0096

Transformers.

Status: getting better. still struggling to pry myself off the sheets in the morning, but I’m on the mend. Tonight I’m going to do my Usual Friday Thing and sleep right through with no early morning alarm to interrupt me. That typically means anywhere from nine to twelve hours. Good grief.

Writing.

Had my best day yet yesterday. Was able to get into the flow and produce not only a respectable word count, but also something which is usable. So, I think I’m getting the hang of this process. The new morning routine is working well – rather than getting up and just starting right away, I’m beginning my day like I’m actually going to work. So, get up, food, shower, get dressed, meditate and then sit down at my desk to start writing. I needed to be very honest with myself, getting up and going straight to my desk wasn’t working – I wasn’t awake enough to focus and concentrate, and all my mind wanted to do was ease into the day with some passive engagement, i.e. reading or watching fuckin’ YouTube. This new routine is allowing me a little bit of space to wake up fully and find my center before starting to work – it’s much more effective.

Eliminating Distractions.

Two other add-ons which I’m finding helpful: turning my phone on Mute and then placing it face down on the desk top just out of arms reach. I’ve decided I’m only going to check the phone at specific intervals during the day (so, if you need to get me urgently, you’re S.O.L.). The second is using my ear-buds to diminish the ambient noise around me. I’m finding that the isolation helps me access the headspace where my daydreams live which is allowing me to get into the flow more easily/effectively.

Site Blockers.

One other piece I’d like to incorporate into this Creative Safe Space (heh, fuck) is to install a Net Nanny of sorts which will block access to sites from my browser. Noted that author John Green installed a plug-in on his browser to block all social media sites – he’s attempting to detox from social media for one whole year. I’m not going to do anything as drastic, but I would like to block the usual suspects, like YouTube, for blocks of time during the day. Say, 7-11am and then again from 1-5pm. Let’s see how that works.

Ok, time to get on with it……..

Nikon D3400
1/100 sec
f/5.3
46mm
ISO 100

………………….

Thursday Thoughts

DSC_0021

Loneliness is not lack of company, loneliness is lack of purpose.

Status: better. my body is still craving sleep, so it was tough to get up this morning. better than yesterday, though. I’ll do my usual and catch up on some sleep on Friday night. My “OCD” won’t let me do otherwise.

Photography.

The photo I posted on IG and this blog yesterday, titled “Walking at Night”, was picked up by TO Haunted Tours who very kindly asked if they could re-post it with credit on their account. I said, yes. They then applied a filter to it, didn’t know you could do that, and added a short haunted story before reposting on their IG account. It looked good, and I am so happy that it was found by someone and they derived some enjoyment from it. I’ll call that a Win.

Typically positives run in series of threes to balance out the negatives, but I’m so happy with this I think it’s worth all three.

Date.

I have a lot going on here. Multiple opportunities and a confirmed date for Saturday night at a Mexican restaurant called Playa Cabana. It comes highly recommended. A little unsure about the date, though. Met her on a dating app, she has been a little hesitant to share a photo of herself – she posted one briefly to the site, but it was not the best quality, and then she took it down. I typically have not had good results from following through on dates like this. She may be shy, but more than likely she is hiding something, so that’s red flag number one. She has also come across as a little needy over the text messages we’ve been exchanging. That’s red flag number two. Against my better judgement I’m going to follow through and honor my commitment.

(I don’t want to sound negative and taint the outing with a bad attitude, but I’m more curious about my willingness to go on this date. Because I’ve had poor outcomes from similar past experiences, I’m usually not willing to waste my time, or her time, going on dates like this. But, I’m making an exception for this one. Why? Suspect time will tell……..)

Ok, let’s get on with it…….

Nikon D3400
1/30 sec
f/3.5
18mm
ISO 800

………………………………… 

Walking at Night

20181219-DSC_0042

Yes I do enjoy walking at night. The world’s a lot more to my liking then, not so loud, not so fast, not so crowded, and a great deal more mysterious.

Status: grotty. full of phlegm. Woke up this morning stuffed to the gills accompanied by a pressure headache. Suspect that continuing to train plus a normal 7 hour per night sleep schedule is not doing my body’s ability to recover any favours. Struggling to start my day as a result; all I want to do is hunker down with a cup of hot tea and a good book instead of getting on with the day. But, I’m way too stubborn for that. (WordPress you’re forcing me to use American spelling by scarring words with Red Death squiggles when I lean towards the British, and proper, spelling. Damn you.)

Radio silence.

My maintenance person is on vacation for the next two weeks, so I suggested to the tenant that we wait until he returns because he knows the unit and I trust him. Offered to source another maintenance person if they wanted these “issues” resolved sooner than that, but my preference was to wait for my regular guy. The response was: silence. I recognise this behaviour because I’ve employed it myself. Antagonistic, I’m-the-victim type language to start and then when I don’t get what I want I throw all of my toys out of the pen by ignoring you and giving you the silent treatment. Yup, I’m way too familiar with that kind of controlling behaviour. Six days into a new tenancy which is meant to last twelve months. This is going to be a long year. The good news is I don’t have to listen to them bellyache for the next two weeks.

Sexting.

Spent last evening exchanging naughty pics with someone I met on one of the dating apps. I have no intention of meeting her in person. Well, I did at the beginning of the interaction, but as time went on it became apparent that she’s one of these Lost Girls with weak boundaries. I’ve dated way too many of those types of girls. They’re fun for short term dating, but are not long term relationship material (heh, and apparently neither am I). It’s uncanny the way that my dysfunction lines up with their dysfunction and how we can find each other so easily. In any case, now that I recognise what is actually happening, what my programming is doing, I can make an informed choice to either accept or pass. I think I’m going to pass on this one.

Ok, sufficiently warmed up now, best get on with the real writing…….

Nikon D3400
1/60 sec
f/4.8
40mm
ISO 1600

……………………………….