[ No, I don’t have cancer. Notice that it’s “not a tumor.” ]

This week. Oh, this week…

You didn’t do anything, did you?

What!?

No?

I actually… I wrote a lot. I got in more than three thousand words… on two assignments for college. But, only one thousand words in the novel. I have two remaining assignments for the writing class I’m taking right now. So, another four thousand words to go before I’m done. I’ll have that taken care of next week. No problem.

But sheesh, I will tell you the math class I’m taking is a slog. I’m taking that online. Two days to get through all the reading and note-taking. Those are eight-hour days, too. Agonizing. This is the last general education class I have to take, and I’m ready to finish it. In fact, I’m just ready to be done with college. I’m glad I’m about finished; I have one more semester. It’s nice to “accomplish” that, but I don’t think it will provide anything for me.

Enough funny business. Are you actually going to finish this novel?

I am. I underestimated how much school would impact me while trying to finish this book. I wrote a fifteen hundred-word script for a YouTube video I want to do this week too. I have another already in the works. Finding the time to record is going to be a chore, though. I will aim for Monday morning.I hope. But finding a balance between finishing my degree, YouTube videos, and this novel has been a train wreck. That doesn’t include my family time. Or sleeping.

I wish blogs were still viable. Just writing out my thoughts would be so much easier than trying to film a video, but no one will pay attention anymore unless its video. Hell, even getting people to watch the entirety of a five to ten minute video is difficult.

Do you have any more excuses?

I have also been dealing with some unexpected headaches these past two weeks. I visited the doctor for them on Monday. Right now, it doesn’t seem to be a big deal, but I can’t help but feel I’ve got the cancer everyone has been talking about. I’m sure I have a tumor in my brain.

No, it’s probably stress. I haven’t been getting very good sleep lately, either. I think I’m just worn out.

Did you do anything else to waste time?

I did create an article about my 2024 reading progress. It’s not a writing project, but it lets me keep a list of the books I’m reading during the year. I’ll update it as I finish each book. I finished the memoir book yesterday. If the article gets buried, I linked it to the About page so you can see what I’m reading. I don’t like how I’ve integrated it into the page, so that will likely change at some point. I considered going ham with video game and movie sections too, but its a chore to create the pages.

When are you-

No, I’m going to talk now! You constantly interrupt me! I spent a lot of time working on the novel. I sat and sat, reading through the first chapter I wrote, and I was able to expand it in some places. I’ve been struggling with how much is too much. Should I spend less time on the description? Is my language use good enough. Do my words engage readers?

I only need enough to convey what I want to say or show, nothing more. It’s the first draft, but I think about these things, and these questions have a strong arresting power over me. They stunt my work. It’s frustrating.

Because I’m writing new material on top of the old, it feels like revisions, and I’m spending too much time thinking about it. I need to layer in what I can and not worry so much about it. I would rather have too much than not enough, and I can cut excess material in the actual revision process.

Even taking this first step in expanding the original novella has given me a lot to think about. The writing will become easier to handle as I tackle each item on my agenda, but dealing with college, YouTube, and this novel will be challenging even if I manage to juggle it all.

For now, forward progress is a net positive.

God Bless every one of you. I’ll see you all next week.

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