Friday, 29 November 2013

Possibly Volunteering Again

I might indeed be volunteering again. As I said before I'm becoming saner than before but this has the downside of realising what a mess my body is. I'm also realising just how much free time I have. Probably too much. Almost definitely too much. To that end, I have considered taking up volunteering again. I'll just be working afternoons but it'll get me out of the house and even be some decent exercise. I'm not massively interested in the social aspect but thems the breaks. I suppose I could just ignore people anyway. It's what I did before and I'll do it again if I have to.

One of the worst parts of being unemployed is all the free time you have. It's very easy to get stuck in a rut or get used to having so much time. That makes it quite difficult to get out of it, or be faced with your lack of time. If I was writing every day then I suppose I'd have an excuse. I'd have something to do at least. Unfortunately it seems I can only write for a few hours a day and I can't write every day consecutively. I have no idea how I can write so fast sometimes. I wrote something the length of three books in seven months. I tend to write at about 1000 words an hour. Which actually isn't as impressive as it sounds.

In any case, volunteering would give me something to do and keep me busy. Physical activity will even help me sleep at night. Probably. There's also a good chance I could actually end up more sleep deprived. My problem now isn't getting to sleep, it's staying awake.

I think I'm going to go back some time next week. I have to go into town Monday afternoon anyway so I'll probably go in early, and go volunteer for a few hours and see how I feel. Maybe me and my boss will even convince eachother to go back to the gym together.

Okay I doubt that one will happen, but as my doctor said, find a starting point and go from there.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Gee, Thanks

I've said before that my sleeping is getting worse and worse. It's not so much the sleeping part, more the waking up part. Although sleeping will probably still be an issue for me too. When I wake up, I find it very, very difficult to stay up. I have less energy during the day and sometimes at the start of the day can lose entire periods of time. One time I woke up and then I blinked and heard my phone go off. I'd lost an entire half hour. That ain't right. So I did what most sane people do when something appears to be wrong with them; I went to see my doctor.

See, thanks to all the depression issues I've had over the years, I have taken very very bad care of my body. Now I'm in a much more mentally stable state and am starting to really see the damage and I'm trying to fix it. Part of this is finding out just what the problems are in the first place. Unfortunately my doctor doesn't really have any answers. When I brought up my sleeping problems he just referred me to online self help. Well thank you very much Mr Doctor Man. How very doctor-y of you. I went in there expecting to end up doing a series of tests and finally getting some answers and instead I didn't really get much. He's referred me to some sort of nutritionist or something I'll be going to see next Tuesday. It's a start I guess but not really what I had in mind when I went.

I've had heartburn for longer than I can remember. I'm probably addicted to the medicine (wouldn't be surprised at least), I'm sleep deprived and it's a problem I've had for years and it's getting worse, I barely have the energy to do anything other than the occasional bit of writing and sitting on my ass all day, and I really was hoping for some more definitive answers or at least working on getting some.

Excuse me while I continue to deteriorate.

Monday, 25 November 2013

Freelance Writing

This post is brought to you by Fang. Who isn't actually writing but made a request. I made a comment on his blog about how I had tried to get into freelance writing a little but nothing came of it. I also freely admit that I probably never tried hard enough anyway. As a matter of fact, no I probably didn't try hard enough at all.

There are several websites out there that you can join up and sell your skills for. This includes more than just writing but I did stick to sites that were mostly, if not exclusively, for writing. There's just one problem with this. It's you, and a load of other people, all going for the same job. You have to undercut them and you have to do a damn fine job of selling yourself. You also need an impressive looking portfolio and it's very hard to get your first few jobs on those places. I actually never got a single job. Part of that was down to being not very confident in my abilities as well as being pretty bad at selling myself. I would pass jobs up that I thought I couldn't do and, when I found a job I could do, I had trouble bringing myself to applying for it. Despite my amazing job of selling myself on last Friday's post, my confidence levels still tend to waver a lot. I still think to myself a lot that I'm not as good as I think I am. The thing is that I have to think that. I have to know I can always be better. I also have to know that I'm good enough for things though, because I am more than good enough. Like The Joker said; "If you're good at something, never do it for free." I can hardly say though after writing a 180k word story I put up for free...

I do have some more resources now though. I just have to take the time to study them and with things being so hectic, and me being so nervous about trying to sell myself as it is, that has not gone too well. Like most things, it's all about getting your foot in the door. That can be pretty tough unless you know what you're doing. For example I'm not very good at SEO writing. I also don't know how well I'd be able to write a speech or something. Or a script. It's not like it's hard to practice but then the lack of motivation and drive comes into things.

In short, freelance writing can be pretty tough. It's worth knowing what you're doing. Both in terms of your writing abilities, and in terms of freelance writing itself. There are plenty of resources so it's not hard to learn how to get into it. Succeeding in it is a whole other venture. I applied for things I knew how to do, such as converting a document into a file for Kindle (which I did for Tulips) and I didn't get it. I never actually got one writing job. It sucks but that's the way it is. Like almost everything in life, carry yourself with confidence and you'll get there.

I'm just...not particularly great at that. Still, Fang is a freelance developer. He knows how to be freelance so if he polished up his writing skills and had faith in them, he could probably do pretty well.

Friday, 22 November 2013

'Scuse Me While I Whore Myself

I am of course an author. Not just any author though. I'm a fabulous one who also happens to be published. Awesome, ain't it? Not quite as awesome as my book itself. It's made parents cry and tell me they love their children more and it's been described as having "moments of writing genius". I personally feel that the entire thing is literary genius but who am I to argue with people? I'll tell you who, I'm Mark Bloody Noyce (that may actually be my middle name) and I'm telling you that my book is fabulous. From the titular story Tulips to the crescendo of Best. Friends. Tulips And Other Stories is one emotional ride that'll keep you reading all the way through it. The best thing about this book? It's less than a dollar and even better than that, this weekend it's going to be absolutely free to download. It's available on Kindle as well as any tablet or phone that has a Kindle app. This includes iPhones, iPods, and even PCs. You can download a Kindle program on to your computer that allows you to download and read Kindle titles directly on to your computer. I should know because I have that same program, and some Kindle titles. My book is so amazingly brilliant even I bought a copy of it.

In the last free promotional offer.

But that doesn't matter.

What matters is that for the next two days it's available completely free. Go click the picture, get the app to download it, and get yourself a copy of the single greatest book I have published. When you have it, or if you have it, then rate and review it, as well as recommend it to your friends and family. If I randomly see you on the street I will gladly sign your Kindle. It might be a bad idea but screw it I'll do it anyway. So, go forth and get a copy of Tulips And Other Stories today!

or tomorrow when it's free.



Tulips, and other stories.

Also, seriously, rate and review it. It really really helps a lot more than you might realise.

Who says I can't sell myself? Oh wait, I was the only one who said that. Everyone else told me to give it a go. Speaking of going, why don't you all go...
Bet you thought I was gonna say "Go buy my book"


Thursday, 21 November 2013

Another Mixed Bag

To be honest I'm not 100% sure what's in this episode. Part of it is me talking about the possibility of going back to University again. I'm completely unable to commit to a decision either way as far as that goes. I enjoyed psychology but I hate the prospect of debt and I'm not sure I can be that committed for several years. I don't know if I can do it, but I don't want to feel like a failure or a let down.

Well, buck.

Also, two podcasts in two weeks. Not bad at all.


Monday, 18 November 2013

Motivation Is Strange

I find myself in a bit of an odd place right now. I'm exhibiting the signs of depression, mostly a lack of motivation, but I'm not actually depressed. I spend a large amount of my day smiling and just randomly smiling. It's not something I'm used to. At the same time though, I'm having a heck of a time to build up the motivation to get things done. To actually do things in general really. I'm wasting my days away. As I said though, I'm not depressed. I'm really quite happy.

Still I find it difficult to write. I find it difficult to go to the gym. I find it difficult to go out at all. I find it difficult to call up the motorbike school and get this CBT sorted (my dad is at work all this week and I need him to take me there, so it's not possible this week. Feck.). I'm just finding it difficult to do something productive or that will impact my life positively. At least I finally went to my doctor and asked him to test me for diabeetus. They took a blood sample last week and I should have the results back either today or tomorrow. It generally takes them about a week to process the results. Even if I don't have the diabeetus I should be making some lifestyle changes. In a way I kind of have because I bought some more real food lately. I've been eating more of it too. At the same time, with this lack of motivation, I'm going to find it difficult.

I'd say that it's because I'm at a bit of an impasse right now. I still don't know if I can do this job I technically have and I'm still waiting for that medical form. The people who got me the job are going to get in touch with them again today. The Human Resources guy there is baffled because apparently, he definitely sent the letter and he's gotten them back from the other people who had to fill them out. I take it as a sign that I really should not be doing this job. Some great Celestial being, probably Celestia, is taking care of me.

That is the case for some of these things, such as the CBT and it was the reason I didn't go to the doctor straight away. I wanted to wait for my medical form and combine the trips. I also find it very hard to set aside a day to learn how to ride a motorbike when I'm not sure when I'll actually be free. It doesn't really excuse the lack of keeping myself in shape or writing though. For a long period of time I was writing things the day I was uploading them. It's why I thanked the fans and said that they were the reason I was able to keep doing it. I was burned out long before that story ended.

I suppose that while some aspects of my life are going great for once, others aren't. I'm not exactly depressed, not by a long shot, I really am just having difficulty staying motivated. Damn, my sleep deprivation has been getting worse too. I lose a whole half hour to an hour in the morning now. It ain't fun. Not hard to see why I'm having trouble staying motivated really.

Friday, 15 November 2013

That's Pretty Awesome

I think the Occupy movement is pretty well known by now. They're still going pretty well and lately did something I can only describe as pretty damn awesome. It's called The Rolling Jubilee project and it was set up about a year ago. Actually it was exactly a year ago today. When people really get into debt and can't pay it back, you can actually buy it at a very low price. The short version of the story is that they've actually bought (and absolved) over 15 million dollars worth of debt. Their original goal was to raise 50 thousand dollars to purchase about one million dollars worth of debt and got a lot more than that. They only spent about 400,000 getting the debt.

They mostly, if only, focus on people who shouldn't be in debt. It's not the folks who buy stuff with money they don't have. The main debt they buy is medical debt. Almost all of it. As well as helping people out with their debt they also wanted to spread the message that debt isn't as expensive as people think. Typically debt is sold to a third party at about 5 cents to the dollar. So if someone comes knocking and says you owe so much, they more than likely paid only a fifth of what your debt is actually worth. So if they can get you to pay it, then they'll have made quite a big profit.

It just seems like a pretty amazing thing to purchase people's debt and then call them up and tell them it's all absolved. Especially when it's medical debt. If you're going to max out several credit cards on a bunch of material goods then you probably get what you deserve, but if you have to choose bankruptcy to save your life, then that's pretty shitty. No one should end up bankrupt or in serious debt because of their medical bills.

It's also very cool to see some people preach things and then actually follow through with it. They actually absolved people's debt.

For more information on Rolling Jubilee, feel free to visit their website; http://rollingjubilee.org/ It's a bailout of the people, by the people.

Thursday, 14 November 2013

I Finished A Story

As well as finishing a story I actually made a podcast! In it I discuss the feeling of finishing a gigantic project, what pushed me to keep going with it, and finally my plans for the eventual return of Immortal Space. I'll be sure to let you guys know when it's actually back.


Monday, 11 November 2013

Titles

I'm borrowing from another blog again. This time it's not Althea but Mich of Sick B*tch. She's a fellow writer and the leader of her writing group sent out a little exercise/survey (Mich's words) about book titles. I actually tend to pick titles seemingly at random and see what fits. They're not easy for me but they're not particularly difficult. Anyway, the point is to take a particular element of you book and give it a title based on that. For this I'll be using Immortal Space.

What would your title be if it . . .

1. Summed up your whole story in a single word? (examples: Proof, Cats, Hairspray)
Immortality. Most of the events of it are based around the fact that Trent is immortal. It's not good it took me a moment to remember the name of the main character.

2. Used so many words we could barely remember them all? (example: Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mama's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feeling So Sad)
It Turns Out The Dead Guy Isn't Dead And So We're Going Off On A Magical Space Adventure To A Dead End World In The Hopes Of Meeting Some Chicks Who Aren't Weirded Out By The Fact We Can't Die.

3. Asked a question? (example: What Price is Glory?)
How Would You Live?

4. Issued an order, warning, or advice?
Come With Me

5. Named your main character? (example: Hamlet, Tiny Alice)
The Immortal Trent Saxon. Can that count?

6. Described your main character?
The Space Cowboy

7. Issued a statement from the main character?  (example: I Married a Werewolf)
I've Not Seen It All Just Yet

8. Named your two most important characters? (example: Romeo & Juliet)
Trent And Geoff's Bogus Journey.

9. Described a set of characters? (example: The Odd Couple, Angels in America)
I want to say The Immortals but it would be a bit of a spoiler. Screw it, I'm going with that.

10. Highlighted the setting? (example: Our Town, Little Shop of Horrors)
I think technically "Immortal Space" covers that. Failing that...I got no clue. It takes place on three separate worlds. "To Serataur And Beyond"? I had to look up where they went too. I also have too many copies of Immortal Space. It took me a while to find the latest version. I haven't written a word in that story for six months now. Sheesh.

11. Highlighted the date or era? (Twelfth Night, Year of Living Dangerously)
A 26th Century Adventure

12. Focused on something physical? (Schindler's List, The Diary of Anne Frank)
I'm tapping out on this one. I can't think of a thing.

13. Highlighted a certain feeling or mood? (Wicked)
Inquisitive. That one took a while too. I think my creative juices are pretty drained.

14. Combined two elements usually not matched?
It's pretty hard to come up with something like that. Every time I tried my brain would just give me things that matched.

15. Suggested a lesson? (How the West Was Won)
There's Always More To Do. Either that or "Keep On Living".

16. Were a metaphor? (The Silence of the Lambs, A Doll's House, The Lion in Winter)
Again, I think "Immortal Space" is a good fit for this one too.

17. Summed up the main event? (Waiting for Godot, Death of a Salesman)
I can't really do that one because the main event of the story is yet to happen.

18. Identified the subject of the story? (A Beautiful Mind)
Discovery is all I can really think of for that one.

19. Identified the genre or category of your story? (Pulp Fiction)
Not Another Science Fiction Story

20. Made a literary allusion? (Of Mice and Men, Brave New World, Gaudy Night) 
I'm not really very good at allusions and I'm too tired to really think of some.

This was pretty fun to do which is why I did it in the first place. It's also pretty fun because every book title I've seen falls into one of these naming patterns. Some occur a lot more often than others. Either that or I just haven't read enough books. Oh I should have more news on Immortal Space later in the week.

Friday, 8 November 2013

Trust

I might have blogged about this before but to be honest I don't really care enough to check. Besides I probably have more to say on the subject. I have trust issues. Lots of them. Maybe not lots of them actually. I'm not sure you can have more than one trust issue. I have fairly a fairly bad trust issue. I think that works better. The main point is that I have difficulty trusting people. I also have difficulty accepting people trust me. This makes it kind of weird when I find people who do trust me. People who would never once question my motives even though I question them myself.

I say people but of course I mean person. A pretty amazing person. I am actually used to people not trusting me which never really makes it very easy to then accept that others will trust you. Sometimes I can have a little difficulty with this person but she really treats me like no one else ever has. I sow the seeds of doubt and feed them a steady influx of lies and plots. Except I don't. I know deep down that there's no reason to mistrust me. I have valid reasons for what I do and do pretty much everything with legitimate and honest intentions.

It's a really strange feeling for me to be trusted no matter what. Not even my cats perfectly trust me. It doesn't help I attack them with flea spray but they can't understand it's for their own good. I win back Girl Cat's love by feeding her though. That's not her actual name by the way it's just something I call her. Oddly enough it takes longer to say Girl Cat than it does to say Kadie, which is her actual name. The name I occasionally call my Boy Cat, Sir Kitty McFluffenstein the Third is definitely longer than his given name of Garfield. I just find Garfield a bit boring and obvious. He's a ginger cat so he's Garfield by default. It's like calling every border collie Lassie. Lassie was a border collie right? I have no clue.

Well that derailed pretty quickly.

Main point? I have someone who trusts me and it feels strange, but also pretty cool. I'm coming to terms with it.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Still Nothing

Still no podcast. Still no job. Still no medical form. Still no motorbike license either. Every time I ring the guy he's busy and gives me another time to ring him. Can't blame him for that really though as a lot of people are trying to get theirs out the way before the weather gets too cold. I've also had quite a while to get this test over and done with. So, yep, can't really blame him for being a success. If it wasn't for the fact that my dad had already paid for it and that he had half of my driving license I'd have given up by now and accepted it's not meant to be right now. If you're wondering what I mean when I say he has half of my license I mean that he has the paper part of my license. The piece of paper that you get when you apply for a license. He can't keep my card license so he keeps a hold of that. I'm not entirely sure why. Well anyway, he still has it.

I was actually going to record a podcast but then I ended up talking to a friend for a good few hours and playing some scrabble with them because I don't have that much of a life, even with friends. I also don't have much of a sleep schedule. Sheesh it's four AM as I write this and I plan to be up in about six hours or so. I want to go out on a walk some time today too. I'm getting even more unfit and it's really starting to bother me now. Not enough to go to the gym, but certainly enough to go out on a walk. I much prefer an actual walk to a treadmill or an exercise bike. It's more of a challenge on the body and I'm actually going somewhere. I think that might be another problem I have with the gym. In any case, it became really really apparent today just how much free time I have that I'm wasting so I'm going to do something productive.

I'm also going to book an appointment with my doctor. Medical form or not, I suppose I really need to get checked out for diabetes. If by some miracle my form arrives today I can take it with me. If not then I can just book myself back in again some other time. At least if I don't get this job for some reason I can say in a calm and clear voice "It wasn't my fault."

I won't believe me but it's worth a shot.

Monday, 4 November 2013

It's Time For The Next Installment...

It's time for the next installment of "So, do you have a job?" The answer to that question is still "technically". I haven't received the letter that I'm supposed to take to my doctor yet. Or maybe they're sending a letter to my doctor. Huh. Well anyway, I'm much less apprehensive about taking the job than I was a few days ago. At least I seem to be. I talked it over with the person who would be affected most and their general response was "Don't work so hard you kill yourself". Unfortunately for them I plan to give myself a very punishing sleep schedule where I replace actual sleep with two naps. To be honest I actually don't need much sleep. Thanks to years of sleep apnea and a terrible sleeping schedule I've never stuck to, I don't have much trouble staying up and functioning on little sleep. I still remember the day I got about three hours sleep and then stayed up for twenty hours plus. Good times.

Anyway, right now I'm resolved to just answer my doctor's questions as honestly as I can. I'll leave it all in his hands. This delayed start means that my life won't be as affected as first thought/feared. I'll still be working the same schedule if I do go to the job, but what days I'll be there will be slightly different. I was supposed to start work today actually. Unless of course I begin work next Monday instead and things are the same, I just have one less week. I'll definitely be there for less time though. I'm currently contracted until the end of November as that's how they work there.

They basically employ so many people that they renew contracts monthly as I explained. If you can stay there for a few years then they have no choice but to offer you a permanent contract. The supervisor I met on my induction had been there for fifteen years. I don't think I could manage fifteen years though. I'd be quite happy to last until the end of the month. It would actually give me all the money I need for a very grandiose scheme I have that I'll tell you more about as it comes to fruition.

In the meantime I hope to get my current writing projects finished up before I have to go to work as it will seriously cut into my writing time and I also hope to pass my CBT bike training, which I'm hoping to retake tomorrow. I was penciled in for then as I didn't know when I'd be working and hopefully if I call him today to confirm, tomorrow will still be available.

Friday, 1 November 2013

I Still Don't Know

Yesterday I mentioned that I had a job induction well, yesterday. Today I can report on my findings and if I do or do not have a job. As the title of the post suggests, I still don't know. Everyone who went on the induction except for me and one other guy got the job immediately. Me and the other guy need to get a checkup done by our doctors. The chances of the doctor saying "no, you can't handle that job" are extremely low but it's just a precaution they have to take.

To be honest I have fairly mixed feelings. I really took the job without thinking about it and what it could do me mentally and physically. I say mentally first because I have surprisingly serious separation issues. That's right folks, this cold hearted bastard gets attached to people. I'm also highly doubtful that my body could really hold out for a 12 hour shift. I also know I'm going to feel like shit though if I really say "I don't think I can handle this." I already feel like shit for thinking that. I can say with complete honesty that I want a job, I really do. Well, I want money at least. I just don't want to to work four twelve hour shifts a week. I don't want to go three days straight without talking to the most important people in my life. I don't think I could handle the stress of all that either. Damn, in the factory yesterday I almost had some small breakdowns and wanted to cry a lot.

Being unable to actually manage the job is my only way out of it, but I really am going to feel like crap either way. Either I get the job and it puts a serious strain on my body, mind, and relationships, or I don't get it and I feel like a massive failure who's managed to let everyone down by still not having a job. It'll be the second time I've truly failed to get a job. This time it'll be so much worse because I had it, and then decided I couldn't do it.

To cap it all off I probably have diabetes. What fun. I'm going to have to talk to my doctor about that too.

I guess what I really need is for someone to tell me that it's okay if I can't do this and, most of all, for me to believe them.

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