Go ahead and be amazed. This TV junkie has been television-free for sixteen, count ’em, sixteen wonderful weeks. Sure, I ached that I missed the end of season episode of “Major Crimes” and hubby caught me muttering and carrying the remote around the house during the season finale of “Castle,” but thankfully, life has intervened to pull me out of the house and away from temptation.
I’ve hiked in the Smokey Mountains, flown with hubby to lunch in Venice, Florida, spent a few weekends near Asheville, visited family in Las Vegas for a week, and learned how to load and fire various handguns.
My evenings, previously spent in inertia on the sofa–remote in one hand, popcorn in the other–are now filled with stories by Janet Evanovich, Kristan Higgins, John Foxjohn, Sue Monk Kidd, Ian McEwan, Diane Capri, Liane Moriarty, Joshua Graham, and Kristin Hannah. I’ve even discovered books by first-time authors: Deborah Wilding’s Then I Met You, Martha Sibley George’s Goodbye, Miss Emily, and a few others I’m judging for the international Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence contest. Recently enjoyed the second novel by Noelle August. The first book was Boomerang and the second is Rebound. Also read an exciting medical thriller written by a physician friend that should be coming out soon.
I was hired by a national aviation magazine to report on Sun ‘N Fun, the annual general aviation gathering founded by the Experimental Aircraft Association, better known as EAA. Sun ‘N Fun begins next week in Lakeland, Florida. The Brietling Jet Team will be performing airshows, and a few friends will be receiving the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award next week. The son of friends will also be in town after being certified or approved to land on carriers. Is this a great life or what? I get PAID to meet my aviation heroes and write about them.
So, overall I have not missed television. I’m out having fun in the real world and reading wonderful, hilarious, and exciting stories. Oh, and I’m writing a few of my own. One is a 90,000-word suspense story with elements of romance, and the other is an 85,000-word suspense story with elements of romance. My BETA readers and critique partners are chewing through them now. All prayers are appreciated.
I made it a month without television. A month. Handsome and my daughter are in awe. They still bet I won’t last the year, but the odds have shifted slightly in my favor. After telling a few friends about my resolution, they unconsciously began defending their television viewing as if holding candy bars at a Weight Watchers meeting. Honestly, deep down, I really miss slouching in the sofa with a bowl of popcorn, but it was becoming a habit that reduced interaction with living people. I don’t judge television as evil, or self-indulgent, or a complete waste of time. I certainly don’t judge others for how they spend their time. Dear friends, my resolution is about reclaiming my most valuable commodity—TIME.
If I had given up television for my health then I’d be at the gym or jogging sweating off twenty spare pounds of jiggle. It’s not about the television. It’s about time. The older I get the more valuable time becomes.
When handsome turned on the two-hour season finale of “Major Crimes” I had to flee the room on wobbly legs to overcome the urge to sit beside him. I hope the recording stays on the DVR until next January. So instead of caving in on my self-imposed TV fast, I finished reading a rollicking fun art heist and intrigue story call The Job.
With the time rescued from television in this first month, I’ve read: Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty, The Job by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg, How to Make a Living as a Writer by James Scott Bell, (pre-publication sneak peek of) False Truth Part 8 by Diane Capri, The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine, The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd, Gifted Hands by Ben Carson, and yes, a few Dr. Seuss books to help Giana with her sight words.
Also saw American Sniper, Selma, and Black Hat in theaters.
Overall, the TV blackout has driven me back to writing. Revisions on two suspense novels blaze on. I entered chapters of one of the novels in a prestigious contest. While it would be sweet to win, the guaranteed outcome is critiques from the judges, which is well worth the entry fee. An editor requested a reprint of one of my magazine articles. The local newspaper called about covering an aviation story, but I declined because I knew the instructor who died in the crash and because I’m a stringer for a national aviation magazine. Give me airshows and conferences and fly-ins to report on, but not crashes. I also took a workshop on WordPress taught by Pat Haggerty to sharpen my tech skills.
So far the lack of television has been a positive change in my life. Like any habit, it takes willpower and time to maintain the change. Wish me luck.
What would you do with an extra fourteen hours a week?