Tag Archives: depression

I’m Back!

Did anybody miss me?

Seriously though, one of the reasons I was gone so long was that I was feeling depressed about my writing. I felt that nobody cared about anything I was doing and all the blog posts I wrote were simply masturbating out into the web, ejaculating my thoughts and ideas into a dark corner of the Internet where all they left was a sticky little stain and a funky smell.

Another of the reasons was that I was pouring all of my energy into my day job. A job that, sometimes, felt like no matter how much of my effort went into it, nobody cared much about it there, either. I was getting in long before anyone else showed up, 90 minutes before I was scheduled to be there, and staying late to make sure that everything got done. Nobody asked me to do this, but I was raised by a workaholic and that work ethic stuck with me, no matter how destructive it might be to my health and sanity.

So, combine depression with continually putting all of my energy into something other than writing, and that makes a sure-fire recipe for being completely burnt out. I didn’t feel like I had any time to write before work, and by the time I got home I was too tired to do anything more than crawl into bed. The only thing left was a feeling of failure as the days passed one after the other without anything getting on the page.

Which, of course, simply fed the cycle.

But now, dear reader(s) (if I have any of you left), I am going to try to start over. I am going to try to focus less on my job in order to save more of my energy for writing. My goals for the year have shifted as a result of this collapse, and I will no longer be trying to write a new novel this year. My main focus is not to simply continue to write, on whatever project I feel deserves the limited energy and attention I can give it. I can’t promise anything, but I will try to post whenever I can and give you an update on how things are moving along.

Speaking of projects, I thought of a new one over this last weekend. It was the opening day of WisCon, which, if you have followed my blog for any amount of time, you will remember I attend regularly. I was there in a last-ditch effort to regain my writing mojo, and, since I am currently blogging about it, I was successful in that effort. There were actually a few panels that I attended that helped me in this, from the Joy of Failure to Taking Care of the Writer’s Body. From Social Isolation to How to Not Give a &#@! All of these panels helped me to refocus my thinking on stuff that doesn’t really matter to the things that make me WANT to get out of bed in the morning.

Anyway, back to the project. There was a sign in the lobby with a title of “We All Met In A Tavern”. I’m not really sure what it was all about, but it reminded me of the old Thieves’ World anthologies, where several different writers all wrote stories set in the same world. It seemed like a good idea, and so, of course, that meant it was worth stealing. Not completely, mind you, but the general idea. So here it is:

The Liars Club

Let me explain. I want to get submissions from writers around the world (or, more specifically, the Internet) to send me stories that are essentially their favorite characters telling a lie. And not just any lie, but a big one. A profound prevarication. An immense insincerity. A fabulous falsehood.

Depending on the submissions, this could either be something simply posted online to the world for everyone to enjoy, or the tales could be collected into an anthology for sale to the gullible public. For now, I’m not sure if I would have the skills or energy to physically publish anything, and I have no idea whether or not anyone will even submit anything, so it will probably just be going online. We can revisit the publication aspect in the future if there is enough interest.

If YOU are interested, here are the rules:

  1. Use your own character. I’m not interested in fan fic or slash fic, so don’t kidnap another author’s brain child
  2. The story has to be told in the first person
  3. The story has to be something outlandish and/or outrageous. Something fantastic that really makes it hard to believe, but told in such a way that it maybe, possibly, could have potentially happened
  4. The story should be told as if it actually happened to the main character, and they should state why they are unloading this load of bullpuckey onto the listener. Whether they are telling the story to explain why they were late to their own wedding or why they have a terrible fear of wheelchairs doesn’t matter, but the story should start with a lead-in
  5. The story should end with the listener’s reaction. Do they believe this nonsense? Or were they smart enough to catch something in the story that revealed the lie?

That’s my idea. I would be interested to know what you think about it (if there are any of you still out there). And, like I said, if you want to participate, send me a story and spread the word!

I won’t bother telling you when I’ll be back with another post, as I don’t know myself. I have only turned on my laptop a few times in the last four months, and that was mostly just to check my e-mail before my inbox exploded. But I am going to try to be better at that starting this week, so hopefully I’ll have another post soon.

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Filed under Conventions, The Writing Experience

Bad Week

This week was pretty bad for me on a personal level. I had applied for, not one, but two supervisor jobs just before Labor Day, and they just announced their selections on Thursday. I’m currently the lead worker in my unit, and so I thought I had a pretty good chance of getting the job. After all, it’s not much of a step from here to there, and I have got seniority over everyone else that applied. Unfortunately, that’s not how things worked out.

Despite the fact that I trained both of the people who were chosen, and that I have been putting in extra (unpaid!) hours at work in order to make sure that my unit runs smoothly, and as I said before, I have seniority, I wasn’t the right person for either of the jobs. After they made the announcement, I was feeling angry, depressed, ugly, stupid, and most of all, unappreciated. I am tempted to start slacking at work, but in all honesty, I’m just not that kind of guy. When I started putting in extra hours, it wasn’t because they asked me to, but because I need to make sure that the job gets done. When I create a new spreadsheet, database, or reference material, it’s usually not because I’m asked to do so, but because I know that it will make everyone’s job just a little bit easier. And when I spend my own money to bring in treats for my unit (which I did on Monday), it’s because I knew they were going to be stressed (there was a software update over the weekend), and would need something to help them through it.

Maybe the management that made the hiring decision understands that about me and that’s why they felt they didn’t need to give me a promotion. Maybe they thought that they could just continue to take advantage of my strong work ethic and technical expertise in the position that I already have. Maybe they’re right.

Or maybe they just don’t like me very much. I have been known to rub people the wrong way. It happened a lot on Thursday, they day they made the announcement. It seemed like every other person I spoke to thought I was being rude. I apologized, but I don’t know if it made a difference. I hope it was just the stress, but you never know.

In any case, I’m not happy with their choices, and from what I know about the two of them (a lot, since like I said, I trained them), they certainly don’t have the experience or work ethic that I do. So I hope management is happy with their picks, because I have the feeling it’s going to be a disaster. It has happened before, but I won’t get into the details.

So anyway, this weekend I am just staying at home and trying to relax, so hopefully I will be able to deal with the coming week. I finished story 38, which was remarkably apropos for what I was going through. It’s titled Beauty and the Beast, and it’s about an ugly man who meets a gorgeous woman, but because of his physical handicaps he feels that it would be better to just kill himself than even try to be friends with her. Thankfully, she has other ideas.

I got into some deep, dark, depressing thoughts in this story, and I have to admit that I have had those thoughts myself. Especially after last week. But don’t worry about me, gentle reader. I have a loving wife who keeps me grounded, and I have no intention of leaving this mortal coil any sooner than I have to.

Once again, I’m not sure what I’ll be writing about this week, but I’m hoping for something a little more uplifting. I think I would like to write something about overcoming challenges, and making the best of what you’ve got.

We’ll see how that works out next week. See you then!

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Filed under About Me, The Writing Experience