Writing Challenge Week 1

Just a tender week after introducing my writing challenge, and talking about how I planned to get my average of 1,000 words-per-weekday done on the weekdays, I just finished Friday’s 1,000 words tonight (it’s Sunday).  But I finished!  My challenge is to get 21,000 words done during the month, and I’m happy to currently be on track.

 

I have a hard time switching contexts I realized.  I spend so many hours each week immersed in trading and programming, and it’s hard to shift those brain-units over into creative writing.  At the beginning of last week I was brainstorming and having a great time, but I put it aside until Friday when I was supposed to start, and I choked under the pressure of the blank page.  In my head I had this whole story that would write itself the moment my fingers touched the keyboard, but then I found myself not only clueless as to the first scene, but even more paralyzed on the first sentence.  Luckily I forgave myself after some sweaty minutes, spent the writing time fleshing out the first few chapters,  and was able to begin real writing the next day with my confidence restored. 

 

This next week the real bear of the challenge begins.  5,000 words, so unless I want to be pulling a college writing bender on the weekends, I’ll need to get my act together.  I admit once I started, and had a rough outline of a scene, things came out alright.  Not necessarily the content, I try not to judge it yet, but at least reasonable words protruded from my brain.

 

I’m working on some “fun stuff” with trading this month, at least for me.  I’m learning about some new Machine Learning techniques, and planning to play with market data from new exchanges to test some of my strategies.  It’s a nice change from the daily sprints of last month as I was finalizing my latest strategy.

 

Today I finished “The Heart to Start” by David Kadavy.  I think it was recommended to me by Amazon (I admit with jealousy they are getting good with their Machine Learning recommendations), but after buying it, I let it collect dust on my Kindle for a while.  I fell in love with it today though as I binged the last 80% of the book in a few sittings. Sometimes you get the right info, presented in the right way, at the right time.  This was it for me.

 

The book is about why we have a hard time starting/finishing things, and advice on how to combat this unfortunate reality.  I enjoyed David’s personal story as he wove it into the examples of how we steer off the right path.  It was very raw and vulnerable, and I think it’s hard not to respond to something so honest.  Although I’ve read a lot of habits and motivational books (as well as some of the books and sources he cited in the book), this had the right amount of tweaks to it to make it a worthy inclusion on the digital bookshelf.  

 

That’s all I have for this week as I need to save the extra juice for my writing challenge.  There are two months left in 2019 (crazy I know), so let’s get something done!  I was thinking about fall weather today (non-existent here of course, but that’s the tradeoff for being able to wear shorts in December) and leaving you with a pic from my last New York trip.

IMG_20190531_132221-EFFECTS

 

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