Discipline: Mental Glue for the Soul
I asked for feedback on our FB page the other day, and I had a mixed bag of responses, but it seems a lot of you want more design theory and general gaming tips, whereas I’ve been slanting things more from a writing angle.
You see those crossed out words up there? I thought about deleting them, but thought better of it. I should share them. I should let you know I don’t always consider the screen a giant swathe of vanilla ice cream, and my words those tiny, colored sprinkles for you to gnash up and ignore. Today has been one of those days. We all have them, and you know what? I was so super saturated with the BLEH! of the day, I considered not even writing at all. I know you scream, heresy!, and rightly so. No one can just up and leave their day jobs if their sick of something without getting a chewing out of some sort. The difference? I run the show. In all fairness, I could’ve spent the day playing a video game, and forgetting about my worldly woes. Some of you might think such a break would do me some good. And I’ve talked about breaks, but you have to have them for the right reasons, not the wrong ones.
This is about as personal as I am going to get, and the only reason I’m sharing this is because I imagined if I took a different tone today, this wouldn’t be honest. And despite all the “making up stuff” I do, I want to be as honest as possible. Hang in there. The point is coming (after one more illustration.) Today, the rock I’ve been pushing was heavy and I hit a slippery patch. Me? I dug my heels in and pushed harder. You may have time for a pity party, brother, I don’t. I have words to write, and things to get done. I focused all my attention to the laser-like focus I’m capable of, and I had an incredibly productive day. Look? I’m still typing, even after all the other stuff. Even though this is optional, I created the “Daily Blog Challenge” to connect with the outside world. All you guys and gals on the other side of this screen.
I more or less ignored Facebook and Twitter and the boards. I popped on a few times because I had asked questions about Iron Dynasty because I want people to get fired up about our upcoming release, but (I’ll admit this begrudgingly) I wanted you guys and gals to fire me up a bit more. Creative types feed upon ideas like fire feeds upon oxygen. If it gets too low, our energy levels drop.
What I’m saying here is this: if I can block out the miasma of the outside world for a 10 hour day of writing, you certainly should be able to crank out a few words for your game. Right? Right? Of course.
The key is discipline. If I didn’t have a regular schedule, if I didn’t have some structure, everything would fall apart. Dogs sleeping with pimento cheese sandwiches. Aardvarks in the Himalyas. We don’t want to see that. It’s too ugly.
So buck up, buckle down, and dig into yourself. Get down to the loamy, nutrient-rich goodness in your imagination, and spill some of that across your page. Remember, no matter how bad your day might’ve been (and it’s remotely possible you had a worse one than I did), you can create something. I did. I’m tempted to tell you exactly what nastiness I inflicted upon the city of Charleston today, but I shan’t. You’ll see soon enough. Just remember, they had it coming.
Until next time, get angry, and get to writing. And with them fightin’ words, I bid you adieu!