Previously I had an apartment I used to refer to as Der Bunker, namely because it was on the bottom floor, featured a patio that was more akin to a mortar position than a patio, and one actual window. It was nice in a lot of ways but the apartment complex was sliding into disrepair.
These days at what will eventually become my home I have a space cleared out in the garage/basement downstairs which now serves as my office. Silly as it may sound, I’ve experienced a massive uptick in productivity over the last two weeks. It helps to have a place where one can focus on work.
So it goes. On to the updates.
The Week in General
Monday was perhaps the worst day I’ve had in living memory. Nothing seemed to work right, I was tired and having a hard time keeping my eyes open. I returned home after my 9 am class for a much needed return to bed.
Tuesday through today were greatly improved. Each day I’d visit the Garage Office and work away at the To List, which is usually kept on a dry erase board behind me. I didn’t get as much swimming in as I’d like but 1250 yards over the week is better than I had done previously. I’ve also been doing 15 push ups per break daily as a means of strengthening my arms for laps. It is not uncommon to average 90 to 105 push ups a day. I’ve managed to get the paperwork caught up on nearly every front, catch up on prep for my next lifeguard instruction course, and push forward on the fiction front.
All in all, it has been a good week. Strange to have four good days in a row. Such things are a rarity of late.
The Writing Front – A Restoration of Faith
Status: Second Draft, Off to E-Lite Reader Corps
I wrote a new version of the 1000 plus words I’ll need for my story submission based upon research gleaned from the Dawn of War Soulstorm video game. Properly informed and inspired, I made a number of changes which I can not get into.
Then I printed a draft out for review, which the Beta Readers also received.
I’ll be honest, I didn’t expect much of the review document. It was fairly raw and relatively underdeveloped. I also expected it to have issues with generating the proper level of emotional resonance in the reader.
Turns out I was wrong. It packed a lot more punch than I had anticipated, which might be a dangerous sign of wishful thinking on my part. However, early Beta Reader responses indicate that I might not be far off the mark with my own assessment.
The projected submission window for this project is next month. She’ll be the first submission of at least three efforts over the coming months. Of those potential efforts, this one feels the strongest.
The Writing Front: Other Efforts
I found what might be a decent idea based upon a recent news article that I may attempt to develop this summer.
The Teaching Front
We had our meeting today to discuss course assignments for the Fall Semester. In general, I can’t say much about those assignments other than it is something I am happy with. If everything holds true, Fall should be much better than the current semester.
As for my two current classes this semester, they are moving along well enough. Both are superior to previous classes I’ve had over the last five years. The students pay attention for the most part, take notes and perform tolerably enough on the exams. Teaching just two classes, however, hasn’t been much of a break. I pretty much do the same level of work aside from the paperwork and the grading. I look forward to having more classes in the Fall.
Long term? I can’t say what is coming down the pike.
The Student Front: Spanish
I am planning on retaking Spanish 102 in the Fall. If things hold up, I should limp my way to a C this semester, which is not good enough in my book. Concepts of Spanish grammar have caused me endless fits this semester. In fact, I wouldn’t feel very confident about taking additional classes until I had at least a B in Spanish 102.
The Lifeguard Front
Sadly, I am afraid this will be my last entry with regard to my summer employer. For the record, I will be working for them this summer, which is what prompts this entry. However, they have a fairly stringent social media policy which I have agreed to abide by.
I may, from time to time, talk in more general terms about my summer job in the same manner as I do my teaching position. However, for the time being, posts on lifeguard work will be few and far between.
I finished The Games by Ted Kosmatka. First class work. I strongly recommend it. Hopefully I’ll get a review hacked out here in the next week or so.
So it goes.
Steven Francis Murphy
Author of The Limb Knitter and Tearing Down Tuesday
Kansas City, Missouri