Brief Update

Still not writing much.  The end of the year is a rough time; right now we’re knee deep in CST examinations, which borks the whole week.  The one bright spot in that is that I can use today to catch up on my grading while the students are testing for three hours, then I can try to write during the testing the rest of the week–while I’m giving assignments, there is nothing this week I really need to grade; it’s just “Did they do this?  Yes? 10 points.  No? 0 points.  Next!”

My brother seems to have worked out a deal with the State of Oregon that will end this whole stupid saga.  It may delay his return to California; we’ll see.  My hope is that he moves his family closer; but he has to make the choice that is right for his family.

My mental energies are returning to normal; hopefully this means I’ll get some time and ability back on the writing front.  I still want to finish this book before the end of summer.  I can’t see a real reason not to.

On the weight loss front, it’s going well.  I’ve lost 30 lbs since I began in March.  84 more to go before I’m at “ideal.”  If my rate of loss holds up, that will make me return to normal food right about August.  The trick then will be not to pack on weight again; hopefully the stuff I’m learning about what makes a reasonable meal sticks with me for the most part.  But if not, I’ll do what my wife does.  “Hey, I’ve gained five pounds this week.  Time to cut back on stuff.”  “Hey, I’ve LOST ten pounds I can’t afford to lose.  Let’s have a cheese plate!”*

I’m hoping I get 11th and/or 12th grade next year.  I live in a slight fear that they’ll give me 10th grade and I’ll have all the same students.  I’d love to have 12th; those are the kids I had as 9th graders, and I’d love to be their last HS English teacher as well as their first.  Plus most of them get along with me fairly well.

Ok, time to get on those essays so I can write my own stuff later.

*Mostly I’m being facetious there

Status Post

So. Hi. It’s been a while.

Writing: Not happening. 

This is the time of year where I get sod-all done, writing-wise.  I’m swamped with essays to grade, I need to make sure my last quarter’s lesson plans are set, there’s State Testing to deal with… in other words, I do a lot of things that sap my energy to the point where I can’t seem to focus on writing.

I hate to use my job as an excuse–I know I ought to be working on writing at least 350 words a day–but the fact is, every time I try, I just stare blankly at the screen and try to make a coherent sentence or even thought… and I fail. I’m spending so much energy on the day job, I just don’t have anything left for my own pursuits.


Uncle Sam and the State of California took a lot out of us this tax day.  We’ll recover, and we’re taking steps to not have the same issue next year, but yeesh!

My diet is going well–I’ve lost 25 pounds in the last month.  I hate it, but I do love the results.  I’m finding which of the MediFast foods I like and which I don’t.  For example, I don’t mind the taste of the shakes, but there’s something deeply unsatisfying about them.  The other foods are a little more “foodlike,” in that they aren’t much, but they don’t feel like I’m not actually eating anything.   I am hungry a fair amount of the time, and I do wish I could eat some of the things I’m forbidden on this plan, such as fruit (I love summer fruits like peaches, cherries, and strawberries more than anything) and bread (I love baking bread, but I won’t do it right now, since it would just be torture to not get to have any).  But I’ll get those things back.

However, I’m going to punch the next person who says “Nothing tastes as good as thin feels.”  Really?  Then you’ve never had pizza, or spaghetti, or a nice slice of warm bread and melting butter.

Short bits: My dad, my writing



This is my dad, at Yosemite in 1993, about nine months before he died.  Until yesterday, the only pictures I’d ever seen of him were childhood photos, and a few pictures where I was 2 and he was 24.  In this photo, he’s 43–a little over a year older than I am now.  He died just a few days after his 44th birthday.  I am deeply indebted to his widow for sending these to me.

I haven’t written much lately, both because I’m generally exhausted from work and childrearing, but also because the video game Skyrim has totally taken over my mind.  I’m seriously loving this game.  I need to get back to writing, but life has been so hectic lately I haven’t wanted to do so.  I’ll get back to it soon.

Even though I haven’t been actually writing, I have been thinking about stories, and my recent discovery I had a brother, and meeting him, have deeply informed my thinking about my fantasy WiP.   I haven’t worked on Warden’s Call in some time, because I wanted to finish Things Fall Apart: The Remembrance War I (I know, the title will almost certainly have to change), so it’s just two or three (somewhat long) chapters, which is a good thing, because meeting Jason has inspired some pretty hefty changes to the story, including a rewrite of some backstory and one character possibly changing drastically.  I’ve also been jotting down short story ideas.

Back to the day job…