Weekly Preview: Dec 14, 2020

This was a brilliant week in all regards.

I read a draft of Aaron Ramos’s first novel, which I enjoyed. I reviewed his first book, a collection of short stories, earlier this year. I’m excited to one day hold a copy of his second book and first novel in my hands.

Artist Zhivko Zhelev and I were able to finalize the cover illustration for my next novel, Intersection Thirteen. I already had this week’s blog posts lined up, so you can expect that to be revealed next week. Consider it a kind of Christmas present.

The Cave and the Light
The Cave and the Light by Arthur Herman
I’m steadily getting closer to the end of The Cave and the Light, a book I’ve been reading on and off again for a couple of months now. It’s a long read, but a worthwhile one. I’ve picked up a few additional classical authors worth checking out along the way.

There’s also the release of Voyage Embarkation this coming Friday to look forward to. As I mentioned last week, all the preparation is done. It’s just a matter of hitting the buttons.

And finally, there’s my exercise, which is going extraordinarily well.

First a bit of history. I injured my lower back while deadlifting in September 2019. Afterwards, I went through it all—a doctor who tried to fill mmy mind with a fear of heavy things and stuff me full of unnecessary drugs, a good physical therapist who got me moving again and helped me learn not to be afraid of the weights, a trainer who helped me get my deadlift form right so I wouldn’t re-injure myself, and lots and lots of annoying flare ups of lower back pain during light deadlifts over the last year and change, all of which was made worse by the fact that my best ameliorative for the pain—swimming—is an activity I lost access to this past March.

315lb deadlift
Me pulling 315lb off the floor. That's “three plates” in powerlifter parlance (the number of weight plates on one side, not total).
All that hard work has finally paid off, though. This past Friday I deadlifted 315 pounds, just 13.5 pounds shy of the weight I was pulling at the time of my injury, and no pain whatsoever. Not only that, but I blew away my old squat record away by 20 pounds and marginally exceeded my all-time bench press record. Needless to say, I am going to keep eating, sleeping and training exactly as I have been for the last two weeks in hopes of a repeat performance in two weeks’ time.

Writing-wise, after I finish The Cave and the Light, I will be moving on to editing Intersection Thirteen and forbidding myself any distractions from that task. I hope to have draft copies out to beta readers in January.

Here is this week’s blog lineup:

  • Tuesday: Free for All, a return to my thoughts on the traditional publishing industry with a focus on copyright.
  • Wednesday: The Prescient Coder, some things that stood out to me after re-reading Jaron Lanier’s One Half a Manifesto.
  • Thursday: The Typography of Insomnium
  • Friday: A New Edition of Voyage Embarkation