Muscle and the Muse

I need to start working out again.

It’s not just my weight, it’s my confidence.  I’m a nervous nilly when it comes to writing these days.  I throw up roadblocks before I’ve even sat down at my keyboard.  I don’t have time to write.  I’m too busy to write.  I’ve too many blogs/essays/interviews to do and when I’m done with all that writing I don’t have energy left for my manuscript. 

It’s pathetic.  I’m feeling pathetic and beating myself up doesn’t accomplish a lot but I’m close to hitting rock bottom here and must take action.

I need to write.

I need to exercise.

I need to cut back on sugar and carbs.

Yes, ice cream is lovely and See’s chocolates are divine, but popping yummy little morsels into my mouth isn’t helping hips, waist or confidence.  Must think like a warrior again.  Must think tough.

Starting today I’m getting serious about the right things, and putting my writing and work out plan at the top of my priority list.  Okay, kids and spiritual well-being are above writing and exercise, but I think there’s room for all four in my life.  I certainly don’t think God is calling me to the freezer and that carton of full-fat Dreyer’s Cookie Dough Ice Cream.  Or the box of See’s candies stashed way back on the top of my fridge.

So goodbye ice cream.  Goodbye chocolates.  Goodbye generous portions.  I’m over being soft and lazy.  I’m hungry for the lean, mean me.  Heck, I’m hungry just to fit in to my favorite jeans again.

I’m hungry to feel like a writer again.

So this is it.  My let’s-get-my-act together and be the professional I know  can be.  Which means writing well, and writing long.   I must start producing more words, must start getting the pages done and the chapters lined up so that my readers will have another book from me.  As glorious as my blog is, I somehow don’t think readers will accept that in lieu of a new novel.  (Or will you?  Because if you enjoy my blog as much, if not more, than I think we have a winner….but no, wait, I’m not paid to blog, am I?)

But I can’t do it alone.  I need your help.  I need to know others are out there sacrificing their sweet tooth and spending hours at the keyboard.  So if you’re on a diet, a fitness routine, or working on a book, please let me know you’re sweating and swearing, too.  Wait, no, that’s not right.  I must be more positive.  Let me know you’re focused and energized and excited about your priorities, too.

So here’s to the rest of my new life! 

Well, to the rest of my May!  Here’s to building muscle and focusing the muse. 

And dropping a pant size. 

Oh yeah.  And finishing that $%!@ book.


  1. Wooooohoooo! Jane, I am with you!! I got really lazy with my internet marketing and my diet/exercise over the last few months. Since I moved to Oregon, I’ve already dropped a few pounds and have made more effort to exercise. So let’s do this together. More movement, more words and smaller portions! I LOVE it!!!

  2. I hear ya, Jane! This morning I finally sat down and made my writing calendar indicating how many pages I’m dedicated to writing per day and on which days. By this Sunday I’ll be done with my plotting and ready to start making the words flow on the page. This comes after some majorly painful writer’s block obstacles, until I finally made the leap into another book that I felt more confident about. I’ll return to the other book some day, but I couldn’t waste any more time staring at my plotting spreadsheet and desperately wishing for the empty cells to fill themselves in. 🙂 Trust me, Jane, you have a LOT of support from us all!

  3. You can do it Jane! I work in San Francisco and there are some serious yummy desserts near my building. I love these fresh milk chocolate chip cookies from Specialty’s straight out of the oven. They are still so warm they melt in my mouth… (sigh) Sorry lost my train of thought for a minute. But I’ve given all that up and my Pina colada drink from Jamba Juice all for losing weight. Ok just stay focus, think positive, think new clothes with new figure, think finish my book… I know I’ll enjoy whatever book you write.

  4. Ah, I know the routine…ice cream stashed away in the garage freezer behind the frozen veggies; then there is the family-sized bag of thick, crisp,salty, dark brown potato chips on the top shelf of the linen closet…
    Exercise has been coming from walking to those spots and moving my arms about to retrieve the goodies. I once heard that there are no calories if no one sees you eat!
    Well, I’ve had my fill of chips and can’t bear the thought of eating another. I think it took “hitting rock bottom” to decide to change my habits. Looking forward to meeting the challenge with you; please keep posting what you are doing to reach your goals.
    Also,please write about your “Mrs. Perfect” booksigning in Bellevue the other night. I keep checking your blog to enjoy reading about the event. Pictures?
    Time for some cilantro.
    Mary J.

  5. I’m with you… I have a book to finish by mid-July and I haven’t started yet. We’re in the middle of moving chaos, but I realize now life is just like that, and even amidst the chaos and craziness you have to write. And not eat so much ice cream (or in my case, tortilla chips and melted cheese) 🙂 Good luck!
    p.s. I bought Mrs. Perfect today–it was up front with the new trade paperbacks at B&N.

  6. Oh man, Jane. I’m with you on all of it. Last August I finally accepted that the fat wouldn’t magically float away, even if I wished hard enough. So I pulled up my walking shoes and joined the gym, where I literally force myself to go at least 3 times a week. It isn’t pretty, but I’m finally getting to where I actually miss it when I don’t go. Okay, maybe not, but I can convince myself, right?

  7. Jane,
    Thanks for that blog. I was really trying to find an excuse to skip my workout this morning but after reading your blog, I am more determined. I try to work out regularly but sometimes I just need a break. Not a good idea, it being May now and bathing suit season is upon us here:) I am not a writer (although I secretly always wanted to write a book) but I am an avid reader!!

    Good luck! Keep us posted how you’re doing:)

  8. Oh Jane, I hear you too! I’m an OB nurse and we get a lot of See’s on my unit! I have been doing Weight Watchers the past month to lose that last 7 lbs from the birth of my son…10 years ago! Anyway..I’m exercising and feeling so much more in shape! I have actually lost almost 5 already! It feels great! So, we are with you on this. And please keep on with the novels…

  9. I am totally with you. I have given myself daily word quotas and haven’t touched dairy, wheat, gluten, or refined sugar in months. The diet part no longer bothers me (seriously– I’m defeated by it at this point) but the writing is killing me. That’s how we know it’s work as well as fun! Hooray!

  10. Jane,
    I was at your book launch Tuesday and you look great! Don’t be so hard on yourself. To lift my spirits and get exercise as well, I go on a hike. Last week we went from Issaquah HS to Poo Poo Point, where hang gliders take off. It was a good 4.5 miles one way, but the reward was seeing trilliums, birds and rushing streams and waterfall on the way to a great view. There is a shorter, steeper route also. Being out in the forest clears the head and all that heart pumping exertion makes the brain work better, too. So, I recommend forgoing the crowded gym and trying nature instead! Good luck with the writing! I already read Mrs. Perfect and loved it, and emailed a niece to tell her to get it and Odd Mom Out, too.

  11. I finished the book, but did not drop a pant size. Sigh. I’d like to do both by my next deadline. I did start counting Weight Watchers points at the beginning of the year, and that helps. But I need to make time to work out.

  12. Sorry I’m commenting so late, but I have to get a word in on this discussion. When you said you need to think like a warrior again, your words struck a chord in me because that’s exactly what I need to do. I’ve never felt more confident in all aspects of myself and my life as I did when I took control of my eating and my health and lost a lot of weight. The Christmas holiday threw all of that out the window and I’m still struggling to get back on track.

    I can do it, just like you can. Like you said, we’re warriors. We can do anything!

  13. Hi Jane! this is pretty cool, blogging and all. Actually, this is the first time I’ve blogged. (WHAT! u say) yes its true…making movies 17 hours a day, six days a week doesn’t give me time or energy to open my laptop. But i’m on break and wallah, i’m doing it. Whoah! Anywhooo, I too have added some baggage, I’m actually 50 fricken lbs over my limit, yikes…so let’s do it, all of us, together. I’m gonna start blogging to u, daily if i can, but today I start Stand-Up paddling, its suppose to be excellent for the core muscles and legs, just hope i can get up on the board. Surfing is one thing, (Wave momentum and all) but i’m learning on flat ocean, having to hold that long paddle, geez, maybe I’ll just go surfing,yeah forget the “Stand-up Paddling” too much “hum-bug”, surfing is easier and I already know how to do that…now to just “do it”!, no more beers either, maybe wine? Suppose to be good for the blood, right? does it have to be red? how about white wine? Or maybe forget the wine, I only like it with 7-up in it anyway…Hmmmmm, okay Jane, this is really really IT….I know…I’m gonna run in the mornings and surf in the evenings and sleep during the day…no I’m gonna do housework, pay bills, maybe write a novel or two (like u) during the day. YES THATS MY GAME PLAN and I’m sticking to it! Wish me luck and I wish you success right back….I’ll keep you posted on my efforts. Tee Hee, but I really really mean it, this time.
    Hugs and Kisses, Aloha, Vicki

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