Tuesday, November 10, 2009

On a Roll

I am on a roll now. I worked for 6 1/2 hours yesterday -- and that's actual time spent on activities leading to the production of a manuscript, as timed by a stopwatch, not just going by start/stop time or even PR agency timekeeping standards, where doing any work within a quarter-hour period is a quarter hour of work. That time does not include other work-related activity, like reading e-mail, reading industry news or blogging, nor does it include bathroom breaks, meal breaks, making tea, refilling the tea cup, etc. I'm not sure I want to think of how long a regular office workday that would translate to. I won't be able to put in that kind of time today, since I have ballet tonight, which kills the entire evening, unless I'm really energized instead of tired when I get home.

In that 6 1/2 hours, some of that did go to working on radio scripts, since that is paying work and is writing, but otherwise I reviewed/edited two chapters and rewrote two chapters. In the "rewriting" I'd guess that nearly half was entirely new material, and any existing material required extensive rewriting. I'm not sure how many words I produced, but the word count on the total manuscript was 2,000 words higher at the end of the day than it was at the beginning, and I also cut about ten pages of material.

We'll see what I can get done today, as I'm getting a slightly earlier start.

Meanwhile, it seems that we got our October and November somehow reversed this year. I tend to think of November as cold and dreary, while October is glorious -- cool enough to be outdoors, but not cold, and with bright blue skies. But this year October was cold and dreary, raining most days out of the month, while so far, November has been glorious and much warmer than October was. Now, watch it all change next week when I go on vacation.

Really, though, I think I'd be okay with whatever way the weather wants to go. If it's nice outside, I can go hiking along the riverfront or take a field trip to somewhere in the area. If it's cold and dreary, I can curl up with a good book or watch a movie. And I am so ready for a vacation. I haven't taken a deliberate, extended, restful break in more than ten years. I may have had stretches of not doing much since I went freelance, but they weren't what I'd consider restful or relaxing because I was considering myself to be in "work" mode and if I wasn't working, I felt guilty. That last break wasn't entirely planned. I was changing jobs and decided to give myself a week between jobs to recharge, but then my boss at my old job had real issues about people changing jobs (it was like working at The Firm), so when I gave my two-week notice, I got escorted out the door. I guess it was to stop me from being able to take any files with me or recruit other employees, but since I'd seen it happen with others, I'd already removed everything I wanted from my office and recruited the employees I wanted before I gave notice. And then I had nearly three weeks off. I took a weekend trip to visit some friends and a weekend trip to visit my parents, had an actual date, and otherwise mostly relaxed. I took long walks every morning, did some writing, read a lot and finished unpacking and organizing my office (I'd moved into this house that summer).

But before I can vacation, I have to finish this book.

Finally, in other news, my essay on Pride and Prejudice is this week's free essay at the Smart Pop Books site. It will be available through next Monday.

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