Thursday 3 February 2011

Working on other things

I'm still writing and researching - it's slow, but moving ahead (and not terribly exciting). Had my first encounter with an analyst parading as human, but the situation has been dealt with. I'm amazed how somebody who cannot write an English sentence can earn so much money - but anyway, it's done.

I've been reading about boxers (for a novella) and radio/newspapers in the Third Reich. Again, lots of excellent detail for "Iron Cross". More importantly, though, I've been addressing another issue in my life. Desk-bound as I am for most of my waking hours, and a stress-eater by nature, there's no longer any excuse for me to stay lazy and gain even more weight. So I'm diverting some of my energy and time toward trying to stay around for a little longer and stay healthy for as long as I can, which includes the shedding of a not insubstantial amount of weight. (I'm telling you this like I'm telling everybody - mostly so people can hold me accountable.) I'll let you know how it goes, but I'm eating a lot of fruit and vegetables these days, and so far I'm feeling good. I should have shed the weight by mid-September, if everything goes according to spreadsheet.

More shocking is that my remaining colleagues at the magazine have been made redundant. That's how the old company rewards loyalty... and I'm relieved that while leaving there was hard, I *did*, in the end, leave, despite promises I'd make the same kind of money in journalism "in a few years". Well, yeah, but probably while tearing myself apart, under constant scrutiny from the asshole publisher who, I know now, has only been brought in as management's hatchetman.

Why anybody on the planet does journalism under such conditions I don't understand. I'm pretty sure it's the hardest job out there in terms of skillset and hours-to-pay. No wonder most journos I know are/were alcoholics, four times divorced, accomplished cynics or worked themselves half to death for a pittance (or a combination of any of those). I respect the profession (if done right) enormously, but it would take a dozen wild horses to drag me back.

At work today, I completed some financial regulation training we're all getting (after money laundering comes insider trading). Slow day at work, though, so I ended up reading and drafting some stuff for the writing, to be better prepared for the weekend, when I'll actually have time to put some productive hours in. Which will go towards re-writing some scenes for "Father of all Things".

Most importantly, it's time for a new computer. My aging dinosaur is taking forever to start up and power down, and I think I can get on boat with Windows 7 after ten years of misguided and buggy development from Microsoft. Then I'll get the new Scrivener for Windows and work on my historical novel.

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