I didn’t wake up early today. This has been one of only a handful of times I slept in this year. It’s been a stressful couple of weeks for my wife and I so this morning at 4 am, we agreed through body language and 4 am shrugs and grunts to not go to the store this morning like normal Sundays. We stayed in bed and kept sleeping. We both needed the extra rest to get caught up from the previous weeks, but now, at 7:45 on a Sunday morning, I’m behind, and I’ll feel like this all day.
While generally, I force myself to get up at 4 AM so I have time to get all my writing, posting and editing done first thing in the morning, it’s tougher and tougher to stick to that schedule as the sun stays out later and later. To keep this schedule I’m in bed at 7 PM and I try to read for at least an hour. Last night, we both were exhausted and dozing off by 8.
Now, the whole house is awake and wondering why we’re three hours behind. And I honestly feel like I’m three hours behind. My inclination is to just skip ahead to where I should be at this point in the day and continue from there. But that would mean skipping my daily writing, something I haven’t done this year. I don’t want to skip a single day. I’m sure there will come a time when I am incapacitated and unable to write for a day. Shit happens. But, I will reserve sick days for true sickness, rather than try to skip out because I’m a little tired and worn out. The rest of the house will just have to wait today. I might not get done everything else I wanted to get done this weekend, but I will get my writing done.
This is exactly why I’ve been getting up at 4 AM. The day gets away from me. With seven cats, a dog, wifey and a 24-year-old man-child at home, things get crazy by 7:30 or 8. I lock most of the cats up and night so I have things still on shelves in the morning, so by 7 AM they are banging on doors and generally trying to claw their way out of their room. Yes, they have a room. They seem to like it except for first thing in the morning.
I find that as long as I focus on my own work first, before I look at emails, FaceBook or any other such mindless distraction, I can focus on my writing. I’m discussing this in another post, but I’m not good at doing two things at once, especially if one of those things is my main work. Once I let that creep into my brain, I’m lost to the thoughts about what I need to do today, things I need to accomplish, etc. In order to not distract from my main work (because it feeds all those mouths and allows me a nice lifestyle), I get up early and focus for 2-3 hours on writing.
As I’ve mentioned in other posts (at least I’ve meant to, those may not be published yet) I treat my writing like a mistress. I had a girlfriend a thousand years ago that I used to see before work. It was fantastic. Due to social situations, neither of us had much time after work, and we worked together where we couldn’t even be thought to be an item, so we sneaked around together each morning for about six months. It was a lot of fun. That’s how I treat my writing. A girlfriend that I’m not supposed to be seeing outside of work, but I have wonderful, explosive sex with each morning without anyone suspecting a thing. Later in the day, I see her and maintain my professionalism, knowing that tomorrow morning, I’m going to undress her harshly and ravish her.
So my 4 AM routine is dedicated to that circle of life, and I hope to be able to keep capturing her each morning. I wouldn’t exactly call her my muse, because I’m not thinking of the actual girl, I’m trying to capture the feeling of excitement that each morning had.
I will stick to my 4 AM writing because of that. I’ve had plenty of mornings this year where I had less than 5 hours sleep. Then, there’s been a few like this morning where I had to lay in bed for close to 11 hours just to get caught up. I forget where we are in the sleep research today. Do I have a “sleep bank” where I can make deposits and withdrawals, or am I killing myself slowly by not getting the required sleep each night? I don’t actually care. I’ve generated more ideas and more writing this year than pretty much all my previous years. I’m progressing as a writer (although ever so slowly) and I’m getting a glimpse of what it would take to maintain a writing career so that if I am ever given that type of break, I’ll have the requisite skills to take advantage of the chance and burst forward. Look for me as an “overnight success” in my 50s within the coming years.
And while I can’t predict the future, at least not in reality, I can create the future in my writing. I can transport myself to such a time where I am making a living writing and working for fully 8 hours each day on my art. It sounds lovely. I’ll still be getting up early, though, to make sure I capture that quiet time of the day before the world wants to bother me with her incessant noise and questions. I’ll be sneaking off with my “little friend” each morning before the real work starts to see if I can get into her pants just one more time. Because that’s what the excitement is like for me, probably for most writers, I imagine. I’m a huge admirer of beauty, and when I was young, it was that first glimpse of bare skin and running my hand across the naked, soft, young, smooth flesh that would give me the most enjoyment. That’s what those early mornings are for, my time to sit down with my creations and see how they look naked and touch them inappropriately if they let me. Some of them even like it. But that would be another story.
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