Before you ask, the answer is no. I do not have the hang of this “writer” thing. I have tried, and failed, to post regular blog entries. I do not have the motivation to edit Comedy of Terrors, nor have I worked up the energy to start a new book. (I had intended to write two this year — one outside of NaNoWriMo.)
Meanwhile, I am listening to three writing podcasts and learning that everything I have done to date is incorrect at best. (For example, you will notice there are no images in this blog post. The social media expert interviewed in this week’s The Creative Penn podcast says that blog, Twitter, and Facebook posts must have at least one. Multiple, in the case of blogs.)
Hobbyist, I tell you.
WRITING IN PUBLIC UPDATE
As is the norm, Camp NaNoWriMo (April edition) was a failure. I got two official hours out of the thirty I needed to “win”. What’s worse is that those two hours finished the initial read-through I had started in early March. I have identified a “need to rework for continuity” scene (that’s progress, I guess) but have not actually started the rework. Pondering on extending the end as well, because it is… shall we say… abrupt.
I wish there were more to report.
ALL THE GAMES
One of the big drawbacks to my hobbies is that I find myself wishing there was a way to monetize them. With writing, the solution is to publish. No one will buy them, and I will know there is no way in the Nine Realms that I could ever go pro.
With games, I still haven’t figured out the “no one will” solution yet. Sure, I could stream or record gaming sessions, but I am not Wil Wheaton or Becca Scott. I am not good enough at teaching games or even playing them to justify such hubris. I only know that they are fun and that if I could make money playing games, I would not need hobbies to entertain me in my off-hours.
Another is that they are expensive. This is why if you buy my books you will be feeding my Games hobby. (I don’t think emoticons are a thing in blogs any more… are they? If they are, pretend I included a smiley faced one.) I have a completionist streak in me, which means if I love a game i will buy everything they put out for it.
Case in point: My favorite game right now is Pathfinder: The Adventure Card Game. Its previous incarnation had the following cash outlay: A $60 base set, a $20 Character add-on deck (optional, but required to make it a 5 or 6 player game), and five additional adventure decks at $20 each. For the math impaired, that’s $180 for each of the four previous adventure paths. If you are into Organized Play (which I am), that’s another $20 for each type of character you want to play, as the Character Class decks are mandatory for Pathfinder Adventure Card Society play.
Lucky (or unlucky) for me, I found some bargains on the internet, and I shop at a Friendly Local Game Store that gives a discount off of MSRP. Still, that’s a lot of cash.
And they just released the revamped PACG. A new $60 Core Set (the last base set we will ever have to buy, or so they promised) and the Curse of the Crimson Throne adventure path — $50 complete, though you do need Core to play it. That’s not as bad, but still hefty to put out all at once.
Yet a third downside to my hobbies is TIME. Without going into too much personal detail, my day job keeps me outside the dwelling for more than 15 hours every weekday. No, I don’t work long hours, but my current commute is killer. I don’t sleep enough, so most of that commute is spent dozing. (Can’t really call it sleeping, and before you make assumptions about my being a danger to other people, there is zero driving involved in my commute, which is part of why it’s so long.)
On the writing side, you would think such a lengthy commute would make it easier to write books. Well, if I slept enough, you would be right. Unfortunately, every time I crack open a netbook or a keyboard enabled tablet on my bus or train, my eyes droop, my head lolls, and snoring doth commence. Most days I don’t bother. During NaNoWriMo, sometimes I conquer the sleep demons — but that’s due to November always being a sleep-deprived month, even before sleep deprivation was the norm.
When it comes to gaming, the time factor is scheduling the other players. There is a regular game night at a local comic shop Thursday nights, which I attend as frequently as I can. I am never there from the start (thanks to the commute), but I usually get in a game or two. It’s always fun, and one of my friends helps organize it, so I get to see him much more often than I used to as a result.
For Pathfinder, though, I have two current games going: A “solo” game, where I am playing two characters myself and taking them on the Skull and Shackles path, and a “party” game, where three other people join me for Rise of the Runelords.
Again, without getting into as much personal detail as I would in a private journal, I will say there is a roommate situation that hinders the solo game. I used to be able to play it on a biweekly basis, but the roommate ended her association that took her outside the dwelling on Sundays, and now my S&S time is sporadic.
Party game is simply a scheduling challenge. It’s hard to get together regularly with one other person, let alone three. We have made a concerted effort to meet at least monthly, but sometimes it just doesn’t happen. Like when I had to miss all of November’s slots due to NaNoWriMo. I have introduced the idea of Friday night Pathfinder. We have done it twice, but it is not something that we could sustain on any kind of regular basis. Maybe twice a month, but even that is stretching it.
(This wasn’t meant to be a whiny post. It’s another thing I am doing wrong on my blog.)