Sketchbook #23

Photography, Writing

This has been such a weird month, creatively.

It seems like I say that—or some variation on that—every month (which should probably tell me something), but… yeah.

First off: my schedule. I’ve changed my workout routine, which has had an impact on everything else I do through the day. And the impact has (mostly) been good: I can start writing a little bit earlier in the day, which fits my natural creative cycles better, and which means I meet my targets a little bit earlier, freeing up time for other things.

So that’s good.

But, at the same time, my old workout routine gave me one day off a week, and that’s gone now. I’m doing different workouts, but I’ve got something scheduled every day. (In theory. In practice, I’ve missed one day of running every week this month due to rain. So.) And the new workout has required a bit of an adjustment period—some days are exhausting, and I find it really hard to focus afterward. I’m sure I’ll get used to it, but I’m not there yet.

Still, the writing itself is going… reasonably well. I’ve started the second draft of the NaNoWrMo novel. It’s not moving quite as fast as I’d hoped. It’s a combination of the weird outlining method I’m using and the fact that I seem to hit a wall after a thousand words or one hour of writing, whichever comes first. But the first chapter’s done, and I’m into chapter two.

I’ve also made pretty good progress on the outline for the next story: I’ve figured out my villain, and I’ve finished the general outline of the whole story. There’s still a lot of work to be done (so much work), but I’m feeling pretty good about the whole thing right now. Even if I’m starting to suspect that the actual first draft won’t actually happen until this year’s NaNoWriMo. (That’s not a bad thing! If I’m well-prepared going in, then I might end up with a decent first draft. And… while I’m still looking for ways to fit one more writing project into my routine, the idea of planning another project for November is kind of horrifying right now.)

That’s writing. Photography is… something else.

I mean. It hasn’t been terrible. But my motivation’s been pretty low this month, and I’m not sure why. We’re finally out of the early-spring wasteland of brown and grey, but I’m still a little bored with the whole thing.

Last month, I said that I’d been enjoying the limitations of iPhone photography, but this month, they’re annoying me. I’ve been using my DSLR a little more this month, and I’d kind of forgotten how great it is. I love the pictures I’ve taken that way; there’s absolutely no way I could’ve made them with my phone. And, of course, there’s nothing that says I have to use the phone for my 365 project, but it’s still so much easier. (Not taking the pictures—that’s pretty much the same, if not more difficult—as much as editing them and getting them online in a timely fashion.)

(I’m also a little bit annoyed with my main camera bag. I’d like to get out with my DSLR a little bit more—I really want to take a bit of time to explore the city this summer—but my favourite camera bag is just a little too small to be convenient. I tried reconfiguring it, and I should be able to make everything I need fit, but it just doesn’t seem to work. I blame whoever designs women’s wallets; they’re all so big, and only really work if you’re willing to carry a big purse. It’s dumb. I’ve come up with something that might be a solution, but I’ve got to field-test it a bit first.)

It hasn’t been a great month for photography. I did update my portfolio again (with a whole new section!), so I guess that’s something?

So… yeah. Weird month.

I don’t know if next month’s going to be any better. I’ve still got a few changes I’d like to make to my writing routine, but some of that needs to wait until I get used to the workouts. (Right now, when I’m done for the day, I’m done.) And my big goal with photography is just to find my motivation again (and to use my DSLR more).

Wish me luck.