Discipline – A lesson in being focused.

My time between blogs probably says it all. That word, above this paragraph, looks resolute. Hard. With it’s three i’s scanning the horizon for any sign of procrastination. I’ve got to be honest in saying that I’ve let it in. Choosing a vast array of things, that have stopped me from knocking out that all important first draft. Don’t get me wrong. I have an idea of what I’m doing. Of when I’d like to get to point B, from the A I left some time ago. The issue is, I keep changing the when. Discipline is a tough thing to enforce, particularly when its you vs yourself. Most do it through fear. The deadline, the bribe -” tough love, all of which are hard to do when its just you. Though Bobby Fischer did it. Do you know who he is? If you don’t, he’s down in history as one of the greats, if not the greatest chess player of all time. An American, who ran a foul of the American political system, was refused re-entry to his homeland and end up living and dying in Reykjavik, Iceland. He captured the worlds attention when I was born in 1972. I can’t say I remember the moment, though he beat Boris Spassky of the USSR for the world chess title. Check out -˜Bobby Fischer Vs The World.’ A great film on a crazy life, from a man who dedicated it to the discipline of chess. More indie films like this one on the arthouse equivalent of Netflix right here: mubi.com

Malcolm Gladwell claimed in his book -˜The Outliers,’ that to be good at anything, you need to spend 10,000 hours doing it. He cites the Beatles and their time in Germany as a launch pad to their greatness. I think I’ve spent about 300 hundred hours attempting to surf, and if my results lend themselves to judgment, then he’s on to something. I’ve just finished reading Stephen King’s Memoir – -˜On Writing’. It’s the second time I’ve read it, the first was when I started this whole process at least a decade ago. I somehow lost the hardcopy so bought the digital and reacquainted myself with his process. I’m a fan of Stephen King. I can’t say I’ve read everything he’s written, though would be confident that I’ve gotten through at least half of it. He’s a character writer. One who takes the reader on an immersive journey through the eyes and often the minds, of those that inhabit his head. They’re usually connected with two previously unrelated things, Telekinesis and the Pubescent teen for example. You’ve probably seen more films based on his books than you realise, like these two: The Shawshank Redemption and The Running Man. He writes to loud music. Typically rock n’ roll, from 9am -” 1pm every day, finishing an hour or so earlier on a good one. Everyday. You heard it. Even Christmas, says the author of something like 65 books. I admire him. The good news is I too have almost completed the first draft of my second novel. Let’s call it, at 80%. He’s probably published two books since I started, but there you go. Stay tuned for more news and I’ll stay more focused. Till then.