Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Consistently Inconsistent

If I were writing me as a character, I would immediately identify inconsistency as my fatal flaw. As a tow-headed child with long braids, the most common grade card I handed to my parents contained the phrase, "Doesn't apply herself." But applying myself is not the problem. Consistently applying myself is a different matter. I can take the plunge (eagerly, hungrily), I just get out of the pool for too many snacks or tennis games. Who doesn't like a snack, right?

This is a blog post I could easily cross-post to the yoga blog I contribute to.

There are few crafts or skills that I stick with, and my learning curve is entirely dependent on how much glitter is being thrown around me. Look, I like shiny things. I'm bad at schedules, boy am I bad.

Moving in with my wife was the best thing that ever happened to me. Not just because she's amazing, wonderful, and I love her- but because I was forced to finally adapt a sleep schedule. Several things coalesced to make this happen: I obtained a job with steady 8-5 hours, I moved in with a woman who refused to let me stay up until midnight, we moved into a house with nobody else but us (and no other schedules to knock me out of rhythm). I now consistently get up by 7 am and go to bed before midnight.

I don't think I can stress how significant of a change this has been in my life. I have always resisted a scheduled life. You could ask my mother or past roomates- as soon as I figured out how to read a book, I was up until 3 am on weeknights. In middle school, I pulled all-nighters just to finish a book, regularly. I learned the sound and distinction between my parents foot steps in the hallway. I created quick-stash places around my bed that were conducive to bookmarks. When I was reading, I was writing or drawing (but reading was easier to hide quickly). My parents knew... they aren't fools, but reading was (and is!) a valued hobby in my family of retired teachers, and the worst I would get was a finger wagging. Come to think of it, I think my dad did threaten to take away my book once and I smarted off about how he'd have to box up all of my books to be honestly effective. Look, I was a brat and I did (do) what I want.

Finding peace in a schedule that seems so simple for every other person on the planet, and so fucking hard for me sometimes feels ridiculous, but as I get older, I'm trying to teach myself to accept and honor my accomplishments, rather then focus on my failures. Or some shit.

So that's the context... here's the meat: I have been incapable of keeping a writing schedule. I try. I see my friends, friends who are fabulous writers (and published, too!)- I understand that a regular writing practice is integral to my success, to finally applying myself; but it's not easy, man. My very nature, diagnostically, is fettered with distraction and fuzziness. I am, down to my genetic code, easily put off. I could blame my genetic donors, but I think they're really marvelous people and that would be decidedly unjust and unfair.

Committing to this 8-5 thing has shown me that I do have the capacity to change. I'm hoping, this year, to add some new things to my schedule. Not giving up on either of these blogs has been a first step for me. Despite not becoming the glamorous, 2.0 blogster, just remembering to write in here once a month, forcing myself to come back, revisit, rethink, has been the best thing I've done for my craft since I left college (the second best thing: starting Wilde Workshop to get together and workshop with like-minded folks). Tangent aside, I'm not giving up, and I'm going to try to increase my consistency. Through sheer hard-headedness, I've managed to make it in the 8-5. If I can do that, I can make room for more writing.

Thank you for bearing with me. Thank you for reading so far. I know there are only like 10 people who read this blog... honestly, my stats probably only reflect me from different computers! Hah!

There may be more prose in here, in the future.