Hey guys! Its been awhile. I’ve missed you, and I know this is never fun to hear, but we need to talk about our relationship. Because I’m a melodramatic blogger who takes his electronic word page far too seriously. There’s a TL;DR at the bottom if you need it.
When I started my little break, I ostensibly did so because I wanted to improve my life by looking for a less miserable job in a much better city. Then I got the news that my grandfather’s health was failing, which sucked. Then I had a fun little adventure in dentistry, which also sucked. Stuff sucked and I figured it was as good a time as any to take a break from P&P. Truthfully, I’d wanted to take a break for a long while, and bad stuff happening was a convenient excuse. Not to pacify you, good reader, but to convince myself I wasn’t just being lazy.
My writing here has always been more important to me than it probably ought to be. I do that; I take things too seriously. Failure to meet my self-imposed update deadlines would ruin my whole week. It’s an unhealthy way to view a project like this one, I know. But Papers & Pencils made me feel as though my life had some forward momentum when I was severely depressed from lack thereof. But it was stressing me out, and draining my creativity, and the moment I gave myself permission to be more lax about updating, I stopped updating completely.
In case I haven’t made it painfully obvious with my whining, I’m not fond of my current life situation. Things took a wrong turn for me at some point a long time ago, and I’ve felt lost and out of control for years now. I want to make a better life for myself as a working writer and game designer. It’s not a profitable life goal, but it’s a life I think I can be happy with. Papers & Pencils has been an expression of that goal. My attempt to discipline myself as a writer, to teach myself about tabletop games, and to practice my craft day after day. In these goals I think I have been relatively successful, but I passed the point of diminishing returns some time ago and I failed to notice. I need to push myself in different ways if I want to continue to improve.
What needs to come next for me, I think, is focusing on and completing larger projects. The Hidden Tomb of Slaggoth is a step in the right direction, and I want to keep that momentum going. I’m already working on a new tabletop project, which I’ll discuss in an upcoming post. And when that’s done I want to do another. A module, or a gaming supplement, or a collection of short stories, or a novel, or a complete sourcebook. Some of them will be free, (like Slaggoth), others will be for monies because at some point I have to gather up my balls and proclaim to the world that I think I’ve made something which I deserve to be compensated for.
So what does all of this livejournal nonsense mean for Papers & Pencils? Hopefully it pleases you to know that Papers & Pencils isn’t going away. But up to now, I’ve treated P&P like the most important thing in my life*. This will no longer be the case. Whatever major project(s) I’m working on will take on that role. So while I am aiming to maintain a rough M/T/Th/F update schedule here, I’m resolving not to stress about it if I miss a day.
*Yes. This is the best I could do with something I thought was that important to me. I’ve got a real future as a writer, amirite?
I’m also aiming to write shorter posts in general. I’ve always aimed for a sort of “informal essay” style while writing for this site, but that’s hard to keep up with day after day. So while an informal essay will still pop up if I’ve got a topic I really want to dig into, I suspect things will get quite a bit more “blog-ish” around here. Not to say that’s a bad thing, just a different thing than I’ve been doing.
I like Papers and Pencils. I like sharing what’s on my mind, I like the great friends I’ve made, and I like YOU. I’ve received more emails from readers in the last month and a half than I think I received in the year prior to that. It has been so encouraging to chat with the people who enjoy reading what I think, and to hear what they think. I hope I can continue to entertain you with my scribblings.
TL;DR I’m gonna spend more time working on books. P&P will get less attention, but it’s not going away. I still love you. Hope you still love me. XOXOXXXOOO