Thursday, July 2, 2009

Roll up and shine

I really hate waking up early in the morning.
By that I mean that if I had my druthers I wouldn’t step foot outside my bedroom before 10 a.m. Alas, the world was not made with people like me in mind.
I think back to college one early Sunday morning. I was returning from a party at a friend’s house. It had to be 4:30 a.m. or so on a summer day because the first lights of dawn had begun filtering into the otherwise pitch black night. I was driving through the campus of Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind. and I stopped at a red light. The street was mostly empty as was the sidewalk, but as I looked to my left I saw someone making their way towards me going the opposite direction.
On the sidewalk was a middle-aged woman in a blue spandex top and tight black running shorts. She flung her arms wildly from side to side. I seem to remember her wearing a baseball hat and sunglasses, but being so early in the morning I highly doubt this detail. In any case, she had on earbud headphones and was powerwalking her way towards downtown.
Her day had just begun as mine was ending.
It was at that moment that realized that she and everyone else like her were the people that ran the world. While I was to be curled up in bed until at least the early afternoon those people had already started making money.
I want to get better at waking up early, but I’m having a hard time figuring out just how. I hate going to bed early because as soon as you give in for the night you just wake up and it’s tomorrow, and honestly, what fun is that when you have to work?
I also have a strong dislike for coffee. I don’t hate it, but I try avoiding it whenever I can. I had some this morning because I had an early appointment. It did the trick, but an hour or so later I could feel my heart rate climbing and the first pangs of chest and left arm pains.
I concluded this was my body’s way of saying I needed a new strategy.
I want to be better at waking up because I have so much writing I’d like to get done. I want to start forcing myself to be productive on a daily basis. When I get home from work though, I don’t even want to look at my own pursuits because I’m so drained from chasing everything I’m assigned to during the work day. Also since I work in a creative job I feel like I’ve already spent whatever juice I have left in my right brain.
When I worked at Eastern Greene Elementary School as a teacher’s assistant I would hide my writing in my folders like it was illegal. It was my own special thing that no one could take away from me while I toiled at a job I didn’t like very much. Now that I have a job I like I have to figure out a way to balance both the work I have to do with the work I want to do.
I’m going to try an experiment tomorrow and wake up early as possible so I work on my writing. This blog is one of those assignments and I’ve committed to doing a page on Microsoft Word every day so it can be dropped into this feed. With this post I’m two for two so far in July so I feel good about that. I also want to keep working on a zombie novel I’m writing with my friend Sean that will require one page of my attention per day as well. In addition to that I’ve got book proposals, short stories, query letters to magazines, essays and articles I’d like to get under my belt.
Me and this keyboard have some work to do and I want to have a life and a job at the same time while I do it. The cruelly early alarms my phone will be set to will be the call of a new day of possibilities, not an excuse to push the “snooze” button so I can feel vaguely bad about myself for the rest of the day.

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