Reinvention

Life is Like Editing…Live, Die, Repeat

Life is Like Editing…Live, Die, Repeat

Living life is so much like editing a book.

Here’s why…

It’s been a slow go today.

Actually…a slow go the entire past month.

Why? Simple…

Editing.

Ugh!

Don’t get me wrong, I love to write. I write every day in my journal—things that may never be published; and, some that will. Who knows for sure?

However, editing is a much different beast than simply doing AIC (Ass in Chair) time and going at a fresh blank screen with the creative juices flowing.

Editing is like taking on the beast you’ve created. An unruly beast at that.

The project at hand? Book 2 in the Catharsis Awakening Series. I just made it into Chapter 5 today; editing that is.

Speaking of beasts…

Ever see the Tom Cruise movie Edge of Tomorrow?

The tagline goes like this: Live, Die, Repeat—and that describes the editing process perfectly.

It’s a kickass movie where Cruise plays a military officer named Cage that’s never seen combat, and the whole world goes to war against an alien invasion.

Cage is forced into a combat role but it gets worse: every time he dies, he starts over and repeats the day he enters combat.

The upside of Cage’s situation is that he remembers the previous day and how he got killed on the battlefield, which he learns from his “mistakes” and avoids repeating the same thing over…um, getting killed.

The cool thing is, once Cage learns how to avoid a bomb blast, gunfire, or just simply being eaten by a mob of aliens, he moves ahead in the story to the next day.

Each time he dies, he learns, and he moves on, eventually to lead his troops to victory and saves the world in the end.

Whew.

Like I said, kickass movie.

Editing is kickass. Um…actually, more like kickin’ my ass because it feels like I die every day I look at the manuscript.

I read the text, then I rewrite, only to find out that I need to rewrite a section far earlier to explain what the heck I just rewrote. It’s like Cage being gobbled up by aliens.

Then, it seems like I’m stuck in the same place in the manuscript, just like I’m starting out on day 1 of the battlefield.

I tell ya…writing is a lonely place!

A lot like life.

Waking up and trudging through the same material just to rewrite it over and over and over, then to rewrite something else to help make sense of the thing you rewrote.

Does that make sense?

Each death we incur brings us a little bit closer to conquering our alien world and hence why the tears when an author finally holds up the first copy of their work at the end.

But this isn’t just about writing. It’s about anything in life you’re fighting.

Like when you conquer some nasty alien you’ve been fighting what seems like for a whole lifetime, no matter how small of a victory.

We make mistakes, we learn, we pivot, we change, we gain ground…no matter how incremental it is.

Don’t give up!

Keep at it.

We need you.

The world needs you.

For heaven’s sake…don’t quit!

Posted by Christian Martin Jr. in Living Better, Reinvention, Self-Improvement, Writing
Re-appreciating the Small Things

Re-appreciating the Small Things

I went for a short walk this morning.

Snow fluttered from low lying clouds. Small flakes. Slowly tumbling this way and that.

A carpet of white rested on all things. Not deep, but just enough to cover everything. Not even a small patch of pavement appeared in the street; a white velvety blanket everywhere.

Wow, I thought as I flicked at the snow before me with the toe of my boots.

Then I stopped.

Quiet, no one around. I was the only one on earth that was walking through this virgin snow. Not even an animal had sauntered by yet.

It was peaceful.

I wondered at how this used to excite me when I was a kid.

For some reason, new snow, softly falling from the heavens, just made me happy when I was a child.

Now, after a life lived—hopefully there’s more to come—a life where I’ve lost hope, regained hope; lost faith, regained faith…and in the process, turned apathy on like it was some sort of a light switch to survive and get through the day.

I couldn’t help but think about how I’ve taken for granted the things that used to make me feel alive.

Small things that used to supercharge me that as I’ve gotten older, I don’t think much about.

I wonder if we’re so busy being busy that we’re too busy to stop and appreciate the things that used to make us feel alive.

  • Watching the clouds change shapes.
  • Laughing at my dog chase his tail and then barking at me when I’d make fun of him.
  • Enjoying a comic book and reading the funnies in the paper.
  • Smelling a freshly mowed yard, that after playing in, the green stains never seemed to leave my jeans no matter how much mom would wash them.

There are times I wonder as to what does excite me, and what the heck I am passionate about these days.

Yet…

Happiness, peace, life, and joy…all falls squarely on my shoulders.

I can choose how I view things. I am responsible if I remain stuck or not. I hold the keys to whether I continue to operate in a state of apathy where everything is numb, trudging through each day without any feeling of life inside.

Of course, this isn’t meant for any one person, nor is it directed at any sole situation.

I recently heard, write like no one is reading. This is for me more than anyone else, but perhaps it’ll make you think.

So…

A deep breath, a sigh, and a thought of how a subtle shift in thinking and viewing the storyline in my head can make a huge difference.

Alone in the street, I smiled and thanked God for being alive. It’s a new day. Fresh start. A clean slate.

I’m responsible for my own happiness, joy, and peace. No one else. And no one can take that from me.

Breathing in the new morning, I continued on my walk thinking how a simple thing like fresh snow is exciting to me…again. I smiled the rest of the way home.

How much wear and tear, trouble and frustration, worry and anxiety, I could’ve saved myself if I would’ve realized this sooner in life.

Posted by Christian Martin Jr. in Life Hack, Living Better, Reinvention, Self-Improvement