Alright…I’m dead tired. This was my first day back to work in ten days and I spent the whole day catching up on what is the busiest time of the year for our company. After waking up at 5:20 to write, working all day, running and eating, now I’m here, writing this blog, feeling like I could crash and sleep with no problem (especially when sated as I am with Panda Express).
I’m not going to at least until I can get a 1,000 more words down, hopefully more.
Though I had a ten-day vacation, I had an unfortunate case of writer’s block for most of it. Where I’d thought I’d be finishing the first draft, I instead only wrote 12,000 or so words. Thankfully I wrote myself out of the abyss, but that section is going to need some major work. I think I write best in that hazy part of the morning hopped up on coffee, and I spent most of my vacation waking up past 8 (which is very late for me). I think I’m less critical of myself in the early morning. There’s less going on in my head. There’s been no one to ruin my day, yet (just kidding on that one…I think).
The vacation was kind of awesome. For the first time in probably three years, I had a lot of down time. I didn’t do anything crazy, but still, I think I spent it most very well. I saw family for Thanksgiving, friends, and sort of learned about myself as a person. I even spoke to a couple of classes at the University of Oklahoma about my writing experiences, which was crazy fun and awesome (esp. when the professor buys you pizza afterward).
All in all, vacation was great, and I’m very happy I had this time to myself that was not necessarily all about the writing.
I’m starting to realize, maybe for the first time, that I’m very happy with myself as a person. That might sound strange, but happiness has always been a real struggle for me. I don’t think it’s just seeing my dream coming true before my eyes (knock on wood), though maybe that’s part of it. I really do think I’ve learned and grown a lot over the past year. For a while there I felt like I was in a period of stagnation, but now, I’m starting to feel myself take flight.
It’s a pretty awesome feeling. Even if things don’t always go my way and if I don’t understand why things have to be bad sometimes (how’s that for vague)…my revelation lately has been that I can be happy with myself, even when things aren’t great, which to me is the key to happiness.
Writers are kind of notorious for being bipolar, but even so, I can be happy with myself. I can’t control others or my circumstances but I can control myself – and that is true freedom and happiness. I definitely feel like I’m a different person than I was a year ago.
In three days, it will be the “birthday” of The Wasteland Chronicles. I published Apocalypse on 12/5/2012 and I will ALWAYS, ALWAYS remember that day and seeing that first trickle of sales (I think I got 6 on Day 1, mostly friends and family I’m sure, lol). A lot of stuff happened between then and now.
I lost two jobs (one by choice, one not by choice). I wrote four books, and it will be five here in a couple of weeks. I made a New Year’s Resolution last year to write 6 books. I will have 5 of them published, and the other one is in draft form, but is non-Wasteland Chronicles. I learned how to better my craft and how to put my books out there. I’ve met some awesome people along the way. I even dated a little bit – and even if those didn’t work out in the end, they were good experiences and I learned about myself and about life through them and met some nice girls.
I think the key theme is, I’ve been much, much busier now than ever before. I’m no longer wasting my life watching tons of TV or playing lots of video games. I’m finally at the point I want to be, and I love the feeling.
I’ve always considered myself a shy and quiet person most of the time, except when around people I trust. I’m just not comfortable pretending to be someone I’m not or pretending to be happy when I’m not. I’m not one for masks and I always strive to be authentic in all that I do, which I think can throw people off sometimes. I don’t know, maybe not. Not sure why I’m writing all of this.
I guess what I’m saying is…for the first time in a while, I’m okay with who I am. Isn’t that weird? So many people aren’t because we’re taught to listen to certain people when we really should be giving them the finger.
Okay, now I’m rambling. I know I go on and on about writing a lot, so here’s a little window into the life and mind of Kyle West. For what it’s worth.