wiggle your big toe

I need to keep writing. Plain and simple. So here I go.

I’m no stranger to breaks between projects. Hiatuses, even. Sometimes I even tell myself I quit forever! I know deep down it’s not true. Just feels good to shake your fist at the heavens sometimes, ya know?

But the last few months have scared me. It really felt like I’d thrown in the towel. Mostly because it wasn’t this angry hate-quit thing I usually do. It was this peaceful, weary acceptance. I feared the blank page.

Friends started noticing. They  wondered where my usual posts were, my affinity for posting on Facebook and Twitter. No new podcasts were coming down the pipe. My game design notebook is full of task lists and meeting notes. Not even a Transformers sketch on Instagram. I heard someone mention that I never talk about my book. Maybe that’s because it didn’t feel like I wrote it.

When I did I was living up north, working as a server. Hiking. Eating organic. Always had a view of the lake. It was…spiritual. Now, I live by a busy intersection. I’m scraping by. I subsist on Taco Bell and Papa Murphy’s. And I can’t wait to shut my computer off at the end of the day.

In a way, I am not the same person that wrote Coming of Mage.

This past weekend I was back in my hometown for a funeral service. My Uncle Joe passed away. Someone had asked me if we were close, and I almost told them no. But that would have been a lie. Once upon a time, Uncle Joe and I were very close. We had the same sense of humor. We saw a lot of life in the same light. We were both natural storytellers.

I was very worked up because I had to read a passage at his funeral. 5 lines. Nevermind that I was no stranger to the stage, or that I’d written and given eulogies in the past. I was utterly terrified of getting up in front of my family and reading off a piece of paper.

After I blazed through the reading like a 5th grader through a book report, I was able to relax and listen to the tales shared by my family members, celebrating Uncle Joe’s life. He was a champion for good. A day-brightener, even at his sickest.

I wish I could say I had some epiphany, or a ray of light shone down and opened my eyes and the angels sang an Ace of Base song. Nothing that epic. However, I did want to stop feeling so shitty. I wanted to start doing things that mattered again. Things that made me happy. Things that were–are–my calling.

Money is an issue. In a perfect world, I wouldn’t have to sacrifice one to obtain the other, but that’s out of my hands at the moment. I need to strike a balance. A job that sparks my creativity, feeds it, but doesn’t burn it out. Sustains it so that I can work towards my personal endeavors. I don’t want to hate writing ever again.

Like I said, money is an issue. But that’s Step 2. For now, I can write. I can create. I can keep doing.

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