1. Exercise at least five times a week for at least 30 minutes per session (20 of which must be aerobic or weight-lifting).
As of September 21, I've been lifting weights regularly for three months. According to Weight Lifting for Dummies, I'm officially no longer a beginner at weight lifting. Yay!
I'm still handily exceeding the requirements in this resolution, though I don't think my requirements really make it to "good fitness program". I gather that ideally I ought to do some serious cardio-vascular exercise every day, and exercise each major muscle group two-three times a week. In practice, I split my upper and lower body workouts onto different days and I rarely do aerobic on the same day that I lift weights. And I only exercise 6 days a week, tops. So in any given week, either I should've been lifting more weights or I should've done more cardio-vascular.
I think I will just cope with sub-optimal in this case. "Not enough exercise" is better than "no exercise at all", and if I keep heaping expectations on myself I'll eventually break and quit entirely.
Although I could cut back on the amount of time I spend stretching (usually around 15 minutes per session) and use that to work in more of something else. But, eh, I like stretching better than any of the other exercises, so it's not as if I begrudge the time spent stretching as much as I would time spent jogging or weight-lifting.
Lut and I went to an arcade today and I played a couple of games of the DDR clone there. I am very very bad at it, but nonetheless tempted again to pick up a home version of the game. We don't own any kind of console, so I'd need to buy everything -- console, game, playing pad. I saw some "DDR pads with built-in DDR games" advertised on one site; I wonder if they're any good?
2. Read twenty-six books this year.
January: Zorro, Isabel Allende; Witch's Business, Diana Wynne Jones
February: Elantris, Brandon Sanderson
March: Gulliver's Travels, Jonathan Swift
April and May: In Our Hands, Charles Murray; The One-Armed Queen, Jane Yolen; Dhampir, Barb and J.C. Hendee; Resenting the Hero, Moira Moore; Emerald Sea, John Ringo; Starship Troopers, Robert Heinlein
June: Against the Tide, John Ringo; Waifs and Strays, Charles de Lint
July: Paint Your Dragon, Tom Holt; The Curse of Chalion, Paladin of Souls, The Hallowed Hunt, all by Lois McMaster Bujold
August: American Gods, Neil Gaiman; Barrayar, Lois McMaster Bujold
September: The Doppelganger, Marie Brennan, Truckers and Diggers, both by Terry Pratchett
I feel vaguely guilty counting Truckers and Diggers two books: technically, they were both originally published as novels, but both together are only three hundred pages or so and they're young adult novels. Very quick reads. Plus I have them in a collection with the last book; all three of them combined are about the same length as The Doppelganger
I'm nominally reading Tapestry of Magics, which Lut recommended but which I've not really been impressed by, unfortunately. Mostly it's made me nostalgic for John Ostrander's Grimjack series of comic books, which had the same type of setting, ie, "City/sizeable place located at a nexus of dimensions, with shifting boundaries and other worlds constantly fluxing in and out of phase with it, and variable laws of physics / functionality of technology and/or magic". You know, I'm not sure where this sort of setting first appeared in fiction. I'm thinking that the "tavern as dimensional nexus", a la Callahan's, precedes the domain-sized versions that Ostrander and Daley use. All of them have roots in Faerieland settings, I suppose, but the "crossroads of infinite universes" really does deserve its own subgenre separate from the more common "two worlds instersect" theme.
3. Collect six rejection slips for fiction this year.
Futurismic rejected the story I sent to them already! Woohoo! One down, five to go.
No, I haven't submitted any other stories yet. I suck.
4. Pet the cat.
*Ash purrs more*
5. Put more money into savings in 2006 than I did in 2005.
6. Keep track of any other productive things I do.
-- Combing through Silver Scales looking for words, sentences, and scenes to cut. I've put a lot of time into this but have not gotten very far: my manuscript topped out at around 256,000 words and I've only gotten it down to around 249,000 so far. My goal is to trim to 130,000 or so. Oy. When I was writing this I thought "Well, it'll be easy enough to take out scenes later if I decide I don't want them". This has not proven as accurate as I'd hoped. Also, editing does not feel productive. It doesn't make me happy to have edited a few chapters in the same way that it makes me happy to post a new entry.
-- I've posted some new material to Unfinished Tales. This hasn't been a particularly good month for writing. Four entries in "Nightmare Waking", a new story inspired by the picture I did earlier this month, and five entries in Birthright, the sequel to Silver Scales. I am not feeling very good about my recent writing, especially the stuff for Birthright. I am tempted to tear up the stuff I've done so far and start over. Part of why I'm trying to do more work on editing and less on writing new material: I figure being absolutely clear on what goes into the first book will make it easier to keep the sequel consistent.
I didn't do any writing or editing today. Or even drawing. I feel rather guilty about that. A whole Saturday, and nothing to show for it.
-- All but one of my players in "Game of October" got in two sessions this month, which is doing pretty well by my standards. I'm pretty happy about the current state of the game and the sense that events are definitely moving forward, which maybe makes up for my glumness about my more traditional literary efforts.
-- This was a better month for art than for writing, with two finished full-color pieces with complete backgrounds and everything. I even like one of them.
7. Clear out my email inbox at home.
You know, I pretty much only work on this right before I post one of these updates. It's sad. On the other hand, I am now just under a thousand messages in my inbox. Progress!
9. Do at least one post per month tracking my progress on each of these.
Got that done, at least.