Pull back the curtain and see how a suspense writer puts the thrills and chills together.

Hello Dear Readers,
I’m ba-ack! The parental unit set off on their journey back to northern climes this morning, leaving me with a fridge full of fattening leftovers, three repaired toilets (yay for free plumbing!), and a newly fertilized and weeded garden. I tried to draw the line when my mom wanted to iron my clothes, but my parents like to feel useful when they’re here. Obviously, I am clearly drowning in a backlog of housework, yard work, and just plain ol’ work-work.

I’m a little concerned about how difficult it’s going to be to get back on track. There’s been several late nights, way too much unhealthy eating, and absolutely no work on the novel (although I did have to write at least one freelance story each evening during my parents’ visit, hence the late nights). Ordinarily, I would use this interruption of routine as an excuse to blow off the entire week and start anew on Monday. The only problem with that plan is that Monday never comes. At least, not the Monday where I bounce out of bed promptly at six a.m., ready to write five chapters and run a few miles before work. My circumstances are never going to be perfectly aligned with my goals, so I need to learn how to accomplish my objectives in spite of my less-than-perfect situation. Anyone have any tips for squeezing more time out of the day?

Saw a story today that really inspired me. Ernestine Shepherd started body building in her sixties because she didn’t like the way she looked in a swimsuit. Now she can bench press 150 pounds and run marathons. And she looks amazing, of course. You would never guess she’s in her seventies.

If that isn’t enough, I watched a man on The Biggest Loser finish a 5km jog yesterday. This man weighs 330 pounds! The distance he jogged yesterday is the very same The Boy and I are signed up to do on the 16th.

Both Ernestine and Michael are living proof that it never is too late to get in shape, and that there really are no excuses for not looking and feeling our best. Who would have ever suspected that a man weighing over 500 pounds (Michael’s starting weight) could jog? Or that a seventy-three year old woman could bench press more than people half her age? If that isn’t inspiring, I don’t know what is.

Please post your best tips for prying your butt from the couch!

Thanks for reading!
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  1. Story Teller

    Reposted from Facebook, because I thought it was quite helpful.

    Kim said:

    I don’t need to pry my butt from the couch. I just need to pry my butt from the computer. I exercise in the morning and write in the evening. And I sacrifice sleep and drink lots of coffee. And its best if children are not present. I also use work hours to do most of my workouts but most people can’t do that. I also commute. I take full advantage of my time without kids to get the biggies in. And it always always takes precedent over housework and yard work. And having cool people who send out emails saying, “we are meeting at this place at this time to do this activity” is a big motivator. Promise me beer after and i will show up to anything.

  2. Elspeth Cross

    First I turn off the television. I love my TV shows and this is a real sacrifice for me. I have decided that since I only have so many hours in the day, I’m only allowing myself one show from 9-10pm (Castle, on Mondays, because Nathan Fillion is too funny to miss) and I write every other night from 9pm till bedtime (no later than 10:30pm).

    I used to do the “start Monday” thing too, until I realized that if I slip in a practice before then, it won’t be as hard on Monday.

    But mostly, I take a breath and ask myself, “Really, what is more important to me – writing or something else?” And then I pry my butt from the sofa.

  3. Story Teller

    Great idea, Elspeth! Stephen King says that if we want to be writers, the first thing we should do is throw the television out the window. TV isn’t my vice – I only watch The Biggest Loser, but I manage to procrastinate in a million other ways.


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