Trimming the Fat

There are several things that I could talk about with a title like this one. I could talk about starting a diet, which I certainly need to do. Somehow I managed to let myself gain back almost all of the weight that I lost a few years ago. It just kind of snuck up on me, a couple of pounds a week, until this week when I had to break out my XXXL shirts again. Naughty writer! I also need to cut back on driving in to work and commit to riding my bike more often. I mean, really! The main route I take is only three miles, with very few hills. The only excuse I have not to ride is when it is raining, and that’s a pretty flimsy excuse considering the number of times I rode my bike in bad weather when I didn’t have a car.

Another thing I could talk about is something all writers need to do, and most don’t enjoy—editing. Getting the first draft down on paper is good, and we all want to make it as good as we can get it the first time around, but any writer that tries to publish that first draft usually finds out that it isn’t as good as they might think it is. I recommend a second or even third draft before handing it over to a professional editor, who will tell you how much it still sucks, and give you a chance to redeem your failures before it goes public. Most of the stories that I have written so far are still in the first draft stage. The ones that I have spent more time on have only gone through a second or third draft, and none of them have gone to the pro. Not even the one that I got published, and believe me, I could kick myself for not doing so. The only excuse I have for not spending more time on it is that I had a deadline.

But let’s get away from that and start talking about what I really wanted to say tonight. In order to spend more time on my writing I need to trim out some of the other things that take up time in my busy life. For example, sleep. Actually, I’m kidding about that. What I have been cutting down on is watching television. I still record some of my favorite shows, but I confess that I have been letting them pile up on my DVR without watching them. Another thing that I have been considering cutting back on is this blog post. I am thinking about only posting one time per week, probably on Sunday. That way I will be able to give everyone an update on each of my latest Dirty Little Freaks stories right after they are finished, and I will have the rest of the week to write the next one without worrying about what I am going to post on my blog on Wednesday.

What kind of fat are you trimming from your life recently? What are your inspirations for doing so? Is there any way we might be able to help each other keep on the right track? I would love to hear your comments, and I’ll be back with another blog post next Sunday.

Oh, and by the way, my latest Dirty Little Freaks story (# 23) is finished. It may have been inspired by Hogan’s Heroes, but I’m not sure how well I captured the feel of the show. But that’s okay, because that is what editing is for, right?

See you next week!

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Filed under About Me, The Writing Experience

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