Incremental Progress… And Bacon Fried Bacon

I’m having a weird brain day. I slept well. I mean, well. I don’t remember the last time I slept that soundly. And it is an evil God that can let a person sleep that well and wake up feeling like microwaved dog turds.

My entire body is stiff. Achy. My head thumps none too subtly just above my right eye, making me grateful for the clouds today. If it were bright out I think I would have just rolled over and never left my bed. And even with the clouds it’s still just a touch too bright.

And I’m supposed to write today? And then go to work? This isn’t shaping up to be a good day.

Yesterday was pretty intense because we had to send a girl home sick, so we ran the store a person short most of the day. Also, the state fair is in town so Salem is full to bursting with travelers here to enjoy bacon fried bacon. Or something like that.

More or less, we were really busy and a person short yesterday. So my day was spent barring. This is what baristas call making drinks. Now, I’m a supervisor, so I don’t spend much of my time barring any more. Mostly directing coworkers and helping them bar effectively. But, being short staffed and all, I pretty much barred the entire day.

And it was busy. Short staffed and busy. I’m not the best bar person in our store, but I’m not bad. I am good at barring, and some days are better than others. Yesterday was a great bar day for me. I moved quickly and efficiently. I felt like a rockstar. Until I looked up at the screen, saw I was at eight minute wait times, and knew there was nothing I could do about it.

That lasted for two hours straight.

If you think being a barista is easy, please, come bar the Sunday morning rush on the last day of the Oregon State Fair for about five hours.

I think I know why my body aches now. And tonight is probably going to be more of the same. With the holiday everyone will be returning from their various weekend endeavors and of course they’ll need coffee.

And we will be there to sell it to them.

Anyway, now that my gripe-fest is over, I’ve come to share some accomplishments.

I started writing Vessels back in February. I made good progress, and reached chapter 10 by mid-April. And then stopped. I didn’t touch it again until the last week of June and have been writing more or less non-stop since then.

In about 2 months I have written almost 22,000 words. Now, for some people this is nothing. Brandon Sanderson supposedly writes about 30k words a week on average. I find that to be insane. But, that’s his job. He gets to write full time. I work full time at Starbucks because I’ve yet to get paid for my writing.

So, my writing schedule looks like this:

10:30am – Wake up
12:00pm – Plug in @ sbux
3:00pm – get dressed for work
3:30pm – work
12:30am – get home
2:30am – sleep

Lather, rinse, repeat five days a week. The other two are my days off, and I only write if I’m really absorbed in a scene or something. So, I’m writing about 15 hours a week, and that includes blogging. That’s decent part time work. I just did the math, and 22k divided by 40 is about 500 words a day. Not great sounding, but it’s the consistency that matters.

I am here, every day I’m scheduled to close. Maybe the writing is hard that day, but I’m here. I’m plugged in. I’m involved on my Facebook page and blog. I am writing five days a week.

That’s awesome. And I really just wanted to take a moment to pat myself on the back, because every now and then you need to realize that you’re doing good work.

This novel will be done this month. I’m actually a little nervous. I’ve never finished a novel before, and I know that this one needs a lot of work. The writing isn’t bad, I’ve had enough people tell me that. It’s not grammar or spelling that will be getting revised. It’s plot and character development and all that. It’s intimidating! Here I thought writing the thing would be the hard part, but there seems so much left to be done…

And that’s why I’m not going to start editing right away. I’m gonna work on shorter projects until my brain is ready to dive back in to Vessels.

But, the longer I type here, the less typing is happening on the novel, so I’m going to wrap this up. Thanks again, Blogland. Have a good Labor Day!




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