Category: excel charts

Insanity: Week 4 Progress Report

I forgot to write Week 3’s progress report, possibly because I was so busy revising and formatting the ebook for Bad Decisions, but probably because I have no concept of time. I can’t remember anything that happened during Week 3, so let’s just skip ahead to Week 4.
Insanity The Workout:
Totally paid off! Saturday, without ever having run 3 miles at one time, Josh and I participated in Emily’s Runaway 5k. Heck, we did better than participate—we got second place in our age groups—and Josh ran every single k! I had to walk a few (eight or nine) times, but I still ran more than I thought I could.
And that’s not even the best part. The best part was the costume contest. I was the only entrant not dressed as a bride, groom, bridesmaid, or groomsmaid. With a borrowed Bible and wearing my cross shirt, I welcomed the dearly beloved who were gathered there today as Father Etteldorf. I’m used to no one getting my jokes, so I wasn’t surprised when the winners of the women’s costume contest were announced without even a reference to me. Then they announced the winners of the men’s costume contest. Funniest costume—Father Etteldorf! Yessirree, Saturday night, using only my wits and some stuff I borrowed, I brought home the bacon. In the form of a free one-topping Casey’s pizza coupon. (Which we will probably use tonight, as I don’t really feel like cooking.)
We’re still doing Insanity the Workout. Today begins our recovery week. Next week we start the Max Insanity stuff, so I imagine the Week 5 progress report will be the last one I post before I die. Unless I forget to post again.
Just in case:
Insanity the Writing:
I learned that formatting a 50-page story for Kindle is not hard, just incredibly tedious. I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like formatting a whole novel. What I’ll probably have to do when I put Halo together is hire a lookalike to play me for a few weeks and seclude myself somewhere far away from friends and family while I go through the formatting with a fine-toothed comb. Also, I’m going to make sure I’ve got all the revisions done that I’m going to do before I format.
Formatting tedium notwithstanding, Bad Decisions by E.M. Smith (my pen name who writes non-paranormal action and adventure exclusively) is now available on Amazon for 99 cents.
So, the story’s published with a month to spare. (Remember how this Insanity project keeps going for two whole months? July 22nd to September 22nd? That’s okay, I didn’t remember, either. It’s something about the core concept that’s so hard to grasp.) What now? Now I write the follow-up to Bad Decisions, working-entitled Bad Coffee. I’m not sure what the arc of this series is going to be, lengthwise, but if I can get about the same amount of work done per day on Coffee as I did on Decisions, I should be able to get the second story up before Insanity ends.

When all of this is over, I’ll write a post on the touchy-feely aspects of self-publishing and getting into better shape via exercise and sobriety. I’m still keeping up that Excel chart—obviously because my physical prowess is outstripped only by my powers of organization—so that will be included in the touchy-feely post as well.

Insanity: Week 2 Progress Report

Insanity the Workout:
I retook the Fit Test yesterday. Still a killer. (I guess in theory, though, if you really pushed it every single time, Insanity could always be a killer.) But I am seeing improvement. Also, I didn’t die, so that’s cool.

Equally cool from an alcoholic’s standpoint is that, with the exception of a karaoke/jam session with my in-laws on Saturday night, I haven’t drank since beginning the Workout. And trust me, those three beers and one tequila sunrise I had Saturday were a mistake I won’t make again. Charlie horses and hangovers are not a good way to start your Sunday.

Insanity the Writing:
Still infinitely better than The Workout. Also filled with more excitement. I finished Bad Decisions’s first draft on Thursday, August 1. Turns out it’s a short story! That same night I found the perfect premade e-cover and bought it.

On Friday morning my computer died, taking all 12,000 words’ worth of Bad Decisions with it. (The only document I hadn’t backed up.) My sister—who suffered a major setback in her personal training career that same morning—and I got together to deal with our mutual fury by smashing things with a hammer. Mostly cans of Coke. They exploded and that made us feel better.

I spent Saturday morning in a parade, dressed as the drunk best man, running laps around my sisters (the bride and groom), doing ridiculous-looking calisthenics, and sweating gallons to promote Emily’s upcoming Runaway 5k and (hopefully) future personal training business. It was a good way to keep my mind off the black rot that grows inside your soul after the loss of an un-backed-up project.

Saturday afternoon brought a Christmas miracle in August—my computer came back to life. Bad Decisions lives! And once I get the peer-edits back and edited, it’ll hit a digital bookshelf near you. In the meantime, I’m starting on the second short story in the Bad Decisions series, working titled Bad Coffee today.

I still keep meticulous Excel sheets for Insanity the Writing and Insanity the Workout. When this experiment is over (Sept. 22, according to people who know what two months are), I’ll post them both here for those of you who love progress-charting. Maybe I’ll even make a graph!

Insanity: Week 1 Progress Report

Insanity the Workout:
To quote Shaun T, “That [stuff] is Ba. Na. Nas.” We’re still warming up and I’m dripping sweat. Definitely not for the faint of heart, but I do feel a lot better after having done it.

Insanity also is a great way to quit drinking. There’s no way somebody could do this workout and still drink every night. Even just one beer would probably kill you the next day.

Insanity the Writing:
So much easier than Insanity the Workout. Last week I wrote 7,123 words on Bad Decisions–and that’s with two days off. I’m three-quarters of the way through the story outline*, and I revise as I go, so it won’t take too much to get this edit-ready. At this rate, I might end up at the point of publishing long before my deadline.

*An outline is just the bones of the plot. It doesn’t account for how long something will take in terms of pages. I’m right at the rising action of the overall climax, though, so I assume this section will take more space than the other individual parts of the story did. Stories that don’t give enough time to the “final battle” or whatever it’s all been leading up to drive me crazy.

To keep track of both my progress with the Writing and the Workout, I made Excel charts. Exciting, right? I’m like a professional organizer or something.