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May Flowers and Plans

To begin, first of May magnolias. Because they’re pretty, and that’s really the only excuse they need.

Second, I have plans for May! Like:

1. Appearances in Berkeley, Chicago and Gaithersburg, MD, which you can catch up with here. If you’re in any of those places, come see me. After May, I have no public events scheduled until Worldcon in September (save a couple of virtual events), and honestly, after giving over the last couple of months to promote Kaiju, I’m okay with that.

2. I’m meant to have a book done at the end of the month(ish), so guess where the focus of my attention will be this month?

(Shut up, it will be the book, seriously.)

To accentuate this point, I will be turning on my nanny software which will block news and social media sites in the morning, because I regret to say I am the sort of person who needs nanny software to block news and social media sites so that I can focus. This won’t mean much to you if you’re solely a Whatever reader (because these days I tend to update here in the afternoons anyway), but if you follow me on Twitter you may notice less of me there, particularly in the east coast AM hours. As the tradeoff is an actual novel in 2023 from me, I think you (and I) will survive.

3. Also in a more general sense I plan to ratchet down my social media use a bit in May (and hopefully beyond) because now 2022 is one-third gone and I have plans for the remaining two-thirds, and the place for me to best recoup that time for those plans comes from the time I spend mindlessly scrolling on social media. I’m not cutting it out entirely, because I live in a rural area and also on the Internet, and both of those facts means social media is where I hang out with friends. But I plan on better managing the time I am on it. A couple of years ago I made a guideline for myself of, if I spend more than five minutes an hour on social media scrolling mindlessly, to ask myself if there’s something else I wanted to do with my time instead. Usually the answer was “yes,” in which case I went and did that for the rest of the hour. I think I’ll get back to that.

(Mind you, sometimes the answer is “nope, social media is all I have planned for now,” which is fine, too. But I usually do have other things I want to do with my time, I have to say.)

4. Also, I’m feeling a bit sludgy these days, and the weather is finally nice, so I’m going to get back to exercising most days, which is a thing I’ve gotten a bit away from in the last several months because, well, I’m lazy and I default to not exercising pretty easily. This is not great, because I’m in my 50s now, and the eventual consequences of Not Actually Moving A Lot are going to be visited on me a lot sooner than I expect. Boo! Aging! Boo!

So: May! Events! Writing! Exercise! Non-Doomscrolling Activites! That’s the plan, and hopefully the last three will stick beyond the month of May as well.

— JS

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