Summer is about to rear it’s blazing head. Thoughts turn to vacation, escape, heat, and relaxation. The life of an amateur creative trying to turn pro doesn’t stop with the seasons though and projects new and old demand attention. It’s a great time to get introspective and update the to-do list. The many hats of summer come into play as we analyze our priorities: the Jayne hat of podcasting, the top hat of role-playing, the writer’s hair band (it’s a hat, or head accessory at least!), and the blogger’s laptop of frustration (also an accessory, but hey it’s on your head) comes out and battle to become some sort of towering pillar of hats.
The podcasting front has exploded. We start out strong with new episodes of the Hiddengrid. We’ve managed to get a number of shows in the can and have actively planned out the next few episodes. New stuff will appear in the feed at the end of June/start of July. Working with Zen has been a great experience and getting to dive into my favorite fictional setting is a blast. Not only should new major episodes be coming out for HG, but a new series is coming down the pipe. Saturday, the 16th, I sat down with a number of my normal rpers and launched the recording of the Sixth World Chronicles, a podcast focused on showcasing Shadowrun actual plays and the how and why of the game. The show will be recorded monthly and go out in twenty minute segments twice a week. Recording and running an RP campaign has already been an interesting experience and I’m looking forward to the feedback. Hidden Grid comes out every other week on Wednesday. SWC episodes will start coming out weekly on Mondays and Fridays.
Shadowrun related podcasting isn’t the only audio I’m doing right now. Earlier this month we released the first two episodes of a new podcast, 5 Things We Like. This has been a show the vanmost group has been plotting for some time, and last month we recorded the first half dozen episodes. The show follows the concept of “Hey, we’re all nerds with opinions. Let’s share them based on a sub-genre at a time.” We’re already put out our lists for top 5 super powers and sci-fi weapons, with upcoming episodes of top 5 anime TV shows, movie quotes, and BAMF video game characters. They’re coming out twice weekly on Tuesday and Thursday and the response so far has been fun.
My show here has been hit and miss. I’ve been trying to record episodes for the Healthy Road to the Con but I’m issues with the last week of audio files going corrupt before uploading. I’m about ready to give up on the smart phone recording. I’m going to try to get the regular Hiddennode episodes back on a schedule of every Saturday, leaving Sunday open as a free day for no podcasts from me.
The different worlds of RPGs amaze me. I love the amount of unique experiences you have session by session and campaign by campaign. The three worlds I’m a part of right now really underline this theme. I already mentioned the Shadowrun Sixth World Chronicle game I’m running, last month I spoke heavily about the Burning Wheel game I’m a part of, and while we’re taking a break in June due to scheduling issues, the werewolf game will be entering its third session soon.
The sessions each have their own requirements for time and occasionally they’ve been interfering with others. For example, last week I spent most of my free midday time working on setting up the campaign for SWC when I normally would spend it crafting posts like this or working on fiction. The length of time of the games, such as the six hours Saturday night for SWC, the seven hours for the werewolf game, or the late night sessions for Burning Wheel take their toll on productivity elsewhere. Managing those time frames will become a bigger focus in coming months, when I’ll need to keep my schedule razor focused.
I’ve been lousy about keeping up my “a book a week” schedule. The rate the reviews show up here should be an indicator of how much I’m reading. I did finally come out and setup a Goodreads account and maybe with this I’ll at least keep to the order I want to read books. I recently finished Blackbirds and will be putting up that review as the next blog post here. I’m currently reading a second draft beta read of a story for a friend and then I’ll be beta reading Andrew Eckhart’s book too (so expect a delay in review posts after Blackbirds). The next officially released books I’ll be looking at will be Nathan Lowell’s Double Share then Tee Morris and Philippa Ballantine’s Janus Affair. I think after that I’ll want to read a completely new author. Maybe one of the Nebula winners from last year.
I admit I’ve been enjoying the writing the reviews and looking at the books from a “what did they do to make this work” approach. Chuck’s work on Blackbirds has given me some thoughts on making a broken character hold themselves together and some tools to do that with. Sigler’s Nocturnal made me think about hiding one genre of story inside the mask of another. Seeing how Morris and Ballantine have progressed after Phoenix Rising with Janus will be fun and informative, just to see how experience can shape an author.
Speaking of authors, my own work is coming slowly at best. I’ve been battling with projects back and forth but by the coming weekend my schedule of projects will break up enough that I can focus on the writing once more. I’m going to be putting Rebin officially on hold for a week or two while I work on a short story. Nothing major. Just something to get the creative juices going again and to recapture the productivity of last November. Unless I have a major change in schedule, I have major doubts on reaching my 365,000 word count plan for 2012. That’s fine. It was a heavy goal for a newbie writer and I just need to adapt it. Since we have two full seasons left with June coming to an end, we have enough time to plan for a word count per season. 365 days a year, so about 91.25 days a season. 90,000 words in 3 months. I can do that. There’s our plan for the summer starting July 1st. I’m not going to stress the daily word count though. Let me worry about it project by project, and weigh in things as they finish up.
I suppose what you’re reading now covers this section, now doesn’t it?
I’ve managed to entangle myself with a number of projects. Idle hands are not something I’ll worry about for any time coming. This post is a sign of times to come, as now that I’m doing far more than I have in the past, I have more to share going forward. I can’t say that everything will turn out on exact dates, with desired outcomes, but I will continue to strive forward, crafting, building, breaking, and rebuilding.
I like the array of hats I have right now. I’ve always enjoyed them, and now that they are piling up I’m just looking better and better.