Lexifabricographer For when the right word just won’t do…

September 19, 2011

Rating: unimpressive

Filed under: wombat,wordsmithery — lexifab @ 11:43 pm

Two hours of poring over finicky tax spreadsheets tonight have zapped whatever enthusiasm I had for writing. But dammit, between getting everything tidied up at work and nursing a sick baby girl at home, last week was a major backward step. To make up for it tonight I’m going to knuckle down and make sure I get something down before I pass out.

Not that I usually need an excuse, but one thing that’s absolutely guaranteed to kill any productivity (for me) is a sick kid. The Wombat has spent the last week so stuffed up that she’s awake for half the night, and screaming for at least part of it. Few things bugger up a night’s sleep more comprehensively than being woken up by a screaming baby. I don’t know how J.K. Rowling managed it (although some of her tortured prose might offer the odd clue).

So this Monday’s entry serves no purpose other than to mark time and remind me that I should be writing. Which is what I am going to go to do in just a minute. First some housekeeping:

826 – Words written on the Project Bushwalk. Not that you would know it from that substellar performance, but Scrivener is proving so far to be the right tool for this job. I like the structural support it provides and the ease of dropping character and place notes in off at the side without derailing momentum by opening up another file. Obviously I could also do these things with a piece of paper, but I like it when the technology not only doesn’t get in the way, but actually gets out and helps to push. In terms of the story itself, I have gotten a decent amount of thinking done about my characters, what they want and what they might do to get it. My middle and ending are still slightly murky, but I am gradually honing them into shape. I daresay any plans I make will not long survive the actual writing process, though, so I’m not too worried about that. The productivity rate is the real concern at this point.

14,300 – Daily average number of steps taken. I had a bit more succes on the exercise front. Over the course of the 111-day Global Corporate Challenge pedometer-fetishism exercise, I averaged about 12,300 steps a day. Since then I’ve increased that rate. I think I’ll aim for keeping the average over 13,500 for the month. That shouldn’t be too hard. I’m at home with the baby Wombat until the start of November – and while she will certainly voice strong objections to my sitting down at a laptop and hammering out a few hundred words two or three times a day, she quite likes getting out and about for a walk. So it’s looking good for the exercise and wait-and-see for the writing. But I think I can probably do better than my current average of less than 300 words a day.

Let’s see about that.

Edit: A shade over 500 words before the eyelids started getting too heavy to see through. Acceptable if I can keep it up for the rest of the week. But I have just realised that the scene I’m writing needs a better defined conflict, which means that many of those words will have to go. But that’s a problem for Later!


  1. A pedometer seems like an interesting idea. I’m already keeping as many stats as I can record from my exploits on the hamster wheel, so I’d be intrigued to know how accurate they are. My spreadsheet could have a few more columns. 😀

    Comment by linbot — September 20, 2011 @ 10:06 pm

  2. I haven’t tested their accuracy particularly, though it occurs to me that I could do a before-and-after the next time I do a treadmill session. The ones I’ve been using seem to be fairly consistent and predictable, though, so even if the numbers themselves are a bit high/low, the comparisons from one day to the next and over time are pretty useful.

    I did notice that pedometers seem to range in price from $20 to upwards of $80. The latter model had a number of features which seemed ridiculous to me, though I can’t remember what any of them were apart from the small light. The one I am using, which I think cost thirty bucks but could almost certainly be had cheaper online, shows steps taken, kilometers travelled, calories (not kJ) burned and the time. (My spreadsheet just uses those first two columns, because I already have a watch and I don’t track calories).

    The main benefit I get from it is motivational – whenever I have the option of taking the elevator or driving down the shops or whatever, the fact that I have a little plastic lump on my hip makes me at least consider spending the time and walking it out (not that that is always an option, but it often is). Well, and I am if not losing then at least redistributing weight, which is good.

    Comment by Lexifab — September 21, 2011 @ 10:00 pm

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