2022 has come and gone and I have done a terrible job of keeping up with these roundups! I owe you subscribers an apology for that. While there have been fewer posts on here these past several months, they’ve actually been some of the busiest I’ve had in awhile.

A lot of that had to with life itself just being packed to the brim with events, obligations, and things I’ve wanted to do. My most recent post mentioned my Little D&D game sessions at the local library (a second post about those games is forthcoming). Those weren’t long games, but they did take time and effort. I have also been running a D&D game for my older daughter and have been trying to keep up with an ongoing Star Wars game that some friends and I have been playing (sometimes off-an-on) since the beginning of the pandemic.

When you add in the holidays and the hectic pace that’s just kind of standard when you have two young children… there has just been less time (and energy!) for writing.

Which isn’t to say work hasn’t been getting done. Since my last round-up at the beginning of October 2022 I’ve published four posts. These have included:

· Upon the Cliffside Still (Poetry)

· The Sleeping Dragon (Poetry)

· A (Nostalgic) Look Back on then Nintendo 64 (Feature)

· Little D&D: Journey of then Dust Sprites (TTRPG Module)

What’s the Plan for 2023?

And these only represent a portion of the work I’ve done in the last quarter of 2022. I recently wrapped up work on a short story that is currently out for submission. I have high hopes for publication with that and will be finding a way to share that with you all (one way or another). I’ve also completed several other poems and, with the help of Carolyn Smith, have completed several more pages of my in-progress comic: The Legend of Clintpoo.

If you’ve read any of my poetry, you already know the quality of her art. I feel safe in saying that her illustrations in this new comic blow all of that out of the water! I am so looking forward to being able to release the first finished issue later this later. I have no doubt you’ll all be as impressed as I am!

Page 5 of The Legend of Clintpoo, Illustrations by Carolyn Smith. 

Writing about the Nintendo 64 really also stirred my interest in doing more video game-focused writing. I worked in the gaming field for nearly a decade and I still really love video games today. While most of what I have to say now definitely falls under the category of “old man musing about the games he loved way back when,” I have some ideas and topics I want to explore this year.

I also really want to invest more effort into writing and publishing tabletop role-playing materials this year. I really enjoy that work. It only makes sense to do more of it!

What Happened with NaNoRiMo?

Some of you may recall, back in October, that I made a grandiose announcement about my plans to write a novella. Suffice it to say those plans crashed and burned in the space of about two weeks.

Among all other things, 2022 was a year of transition when it came to my attitudes toward writing. I really enjoy writing. I’ve been doing it since I was really young and I take a lot of satisfaction from it. Something I have really come to recognize more and more, however, is that I tend to turn writing into something nasty and toxic.

I have a really bad habit of tying my self-worth and mental health to success in writing. My entire professional career has been built around writing. I have also always wanted to achieve that goal that every writer dreams of: publishing a book!

My National Novel Writing Month project was my latest attempt to strike at this goal. The deeper I got into it, however, the more I realized that it was making me kind of miserable. It’s not the first time this has happened, either. Every time I’ve tried to set out on the journey of writing a book, I end up in a headspace where I kind of hate everything.

Some would say that you just need to push through that! Keep going until you make it! Fight on until you hit that coveted “The End.”

I think life is short.  After talking with other writers, friends, and loved ones, I’ve decided that it’s a fool’s errand to throw myself into projects and processes that leave me bitter and depressed.  It feels especially foolish when there I genuinely enjoy writing poetry, writing essays, and writing short fiction. Maybe it’s just me trying to justify my own decision, but I think too much emphasis is put on writing novels. There are lots of great writers, both past and present, who never wrote a full book.

So… yeah! NaNoRiMo has been called offer me, and I am focusing on content that makes me happy as a person. I hope, moving forward into 2023, that it’s content you’ll enjoying reading too.