While I know this blog article won't be posted until 2023, I sit here as 2022 rapidly comes to a close and lament the time lost not spent writing. It has been a busy year but not one that has produced much for my writing. I was able to release Books 3 and 4 in my Ascension Legacy series within the same calendar year, a first for me to have 2 books release so close together. It offers encouragement for what might come next year but releasing new books did little to advance my completion of others.
We started 2022 off with happy memories. Our first grandchild was born in Nov 2021. Our son, his wife, and our new grandson came to stay with us for several weeks over the Christmas holiday. We got to spend a significant amount of time with our growing family but this meant that I wasn't writing because I was too busy snuggling that perfect little child.
Of course, their stay had other lasting impacts too. My son is an avid gamer, like myself, and got me to play Apex Legends with him. This is an online shooter and for months afterwards he and I would play every night until the wee hours of the morning. It left no time for writing if I was working during the day, spending the evenings with my beautiful wife, and then shooting strangers on the Internet with my son in a video game.
We still like to play Apex but as our grandson grows, my son has less time to play, something I can appreciate thinking back to how my gaming habits changed after becoming a new father so many years ago. Despite this release from the Apex addiction, I still haven't done as much writing as in previous years. It isn't because I'm out of ideas, inspirations, or motivations though. It is still down to a lack of time.
Even with the Apex "monkey" off my back, I still find myself with little free time these days. Work has seen an influx of tasks, some that have me working 7 days a week 12-15 hours a day. That's enough to wear you out so that when you do have a few minutes free that all you want to do is sleep, not take on another project, even a personal one.
Not only that, we've continued to have family stay with us somewhat routinely. Our nephew, his wife, and their daughter have stayed with us on multiple occasions when he has weekend leave from the Army. Our son, his wife, and our grandson just left after being here for a little over a week to celebrate our grandson's first birthday. When our house is full of guests and we are entertaining and spending time with our family I can't really write. I want to play with my great-nieces and my grandson. I want to visit with my nephews, sons, and their wives. I want to be a part of the family, not a hermit locked in a room toiling away on a book. Sure, I want to write but not at the expense of my family time.
My wife and I have gone on a few trips. We spent her birthday in a cabin near Fredericksburg, Texas. We took a short cruise down to Cozumel. We've gone on date nights and weekend adventures. I love this woman and want to stay married to her, not be married to my books and nothing else.
I've taken time to write, some. I sit in the living room with my iPad and make notes or work on plot lines while we watch TV or she sleeps on the couch after a long day of work. It isn't like I haven't written anything this year but compared to years past, I haven't produced much in 2022. There have been years were I would start and finish 2 books within 12 months and in the 12 months of this year I think I've added something to about 5 different books but none are even halfway complete.
I use to do a lot of my writing in hotels at night while traveling for work but since COVID I haven't traveled professionally. I have yet to find the same level of opportunities to write while at home that I did while on the road. Some might say I wrote out of boredom but I think I wrote out of opportunity. I've always had a passion for writing but as a husband and father there seem to always be demands on my time and attention that limit me from pursuing that passion to a fuller degree. But when I'm hundreds or thousands of miles away from home those obligations and expectations no longer exist. I can sit in a quiet hotel room with some music in the background and just type until my fingers cramp. I'm not sure that I'll see that level of productivity again but in the meantime I need to find a way to get more work done.
Sure, I still have 5 completed books that need to be edited, formatted, printed, and converted to eBooks so its not like I'm lacking material to put out but its the absence of production that I'm longing for. I want to write but haven't found that new balance. Maybe 2023 will be the year I do though and finish those works I've already started so I can look at starting more. I want to be a prolific storyteller, and hopefully a good one too, but to achieve that I need more stories to tell, not just stories to think about telling.