Sunday, December 19, 2010

Dried up muses and P90X

Lately I feel like I'm stuck in quicksand. My WIP doesn't seem to be moving. I can't seem to write past the vortex that is Chapter 17 no matter how many times I sit down at the computer to write.

I don't think I've lost a single pound after three weeks of P90X. Seriously. I'm bound to be one of those exceptions to the weight-loss guru's program rule.


(*I'm convinced Tony Horton is an alien sent to punish the human race in cruel and unusual ways. Crunchy Frog, anyone???)

It's easy to succumb to the sinking feeling. My brother-in-law asked me yesterday if I'd been writing through the rainstorm pummeling Northern Cali. I hadn't. It was unusual to say the least...rain is where I get my inspiration most days. It cleanses the grog in my brain and refreshes my muse.

It's easy to get stuck fifty pages from the end and dwell on the fact that all the words coming out are garbage. They really are garbage. (And I'm not looking for external reinforcement here because, trust me, I know what I'm capable of and the new stuff I've written is far from it.)

But I realized something this afternoon. I took a huge nap (way abnormal) caught up on my sleep hiatus (Hubby's office Christmas party last night--waaay too much fun) and woke up with all sorts of writing energy. I made a mocha and typed away while Tank and Princess watched Shrek 4. (Oh, I know the mocha might have something to do with the weight-loss thing, but everyone needs a splurge or two.)

I checked my word count before starting edits: 68,000 words. I didn't type a single thing onto dreaded and empty Chapter 17, page 1. I edited Chapter 15-16 to the point of Immortal Delirium. When I reached the end of Chapter 16, I rechecked the word count: 70,000.

What?

I actually managed to edit...I mean write 2K without meaning to? Cool concept.

I took my measurements. In three weeks on the P90X program I've lost 3/4 of an inch on each thigh, an inch on my waist and 1 3/4 inches off my lower abs. (I'd weigh myself but my scale is currently in the garage being used to weigh Mustang parts...don't ask.) I lost something. May or may not be weight, but my jeans are fitting more loosely and the inches are melting off. Pretty cool.

I realized that even though I feel like I'm standing still, I'm really not. I'm sweating. I'm getting healthy. My body is changing for the better. I'm editing. I'm perfecting my craft. I'm learning how to write through those wicked, wicked, doldrums (IHATETHEMIHATETHEMIHATETHEM!!!) I'm learning that writing as a career isn't all roses and flowing inspiration.

Muses really do dry up, even in rainstorms that last for weeks. And weight really does come off with hard work, even if you can't prove it. I've just realized that if I stop focusing on the struggle and focus more on the slow and steady process, the work is getting done.

I'm a happy girl. *grin

4 comments:

Eleri Stone said...

Crunchy frog LOL. I found I didn't lose a lot of weight on p90x but my clothes fit better too. I think it's the whole muscle weighs more thing. Such a good point...it's hard to measure some kinds of progress.

Kristin Miller said...

Glad to know I'm not the only one! :) I wonder how many people finish the program and jump back on the horse...you?

Eleri Stone said...

My husband and I did it last year. I would say that it's great for jump-starting an exercise program but you definitely need to keep going w/ it or replace it w/ something else or else you lose results pretty quickly. I was actually thinking about doing it again after the new year.
My favorite: "Like a pteradactyl backing out of trouble - Caw caw." He just says whatever passes through his head at the moment.

Kristin Miller said...

Great advice, thanks!

Caw-caw--LOL!! You are so right. The one that got me laughing was "WOW. And what's WOW upside down? MOM."

Yeah, because when I'm working out hardcore and release the tension in my muscles by getting a good stretch, I always think of my mother. Ha!