Monday, February 22, 2010

Just one year of blog... better than a lifetime of... not blog? I guess so. Look, there are bullets, and I need to bite them before I fizzle out and fade away in an anticlimax of mixed metaphors.

I've been doing a lot of soul-searching this past week, and I came up short on souls but long on answers. The TL;DR version is that I'm mostly done with this blog, and moving on to other things. I feel like I ought to explain why, so here goes.

Oi, where to begin?

First is the "bad news": Breath to Breath is cancelled. The things I wanted to do with the book no longer strike me as worth doing in the first place. So what if I can horrify people? Ooh. Scary. Ooh. I just don't care about that sort of thing as much as I did a couple years back when I wrote the first version of it.

Second, I'm starting to make some real damn progress with my therapist. Without getting too much into the gory details, one of my father's gifts to me over the holidays was a pair of binders that basically lay out the unwelcome adventure of my childhood in police reports, court transcripts, psychological evaluations, and correspondence between my father and the various professionals he had to deal with while raising me. I had no choice when I was a teenager but to bury all this and get as far away from it as I could. Well, I got far away, I got some perspective, and now I'm coming back with the tools to dig it all up and solve it, so that I can put it in its proper place. I've cried more in the last fifty days than I have in the previous fifteen years. But this doesn't exactly leave me with much emotional capital left over to invest in blogging, so I guess this has to go for now.

Third, I finally have some goddamned ambition! For as long as I can remember, I've just been vaguely happy to be alive but relatively aimless, drifting from hobby to hobby and never really applying myself. A lot of this was because I didn't want to have to fit in, and didn't really care about the hallmarks of traditional success. But, to be honest, most of it is insecurity and a general refusal to risk rejection. Well, I'm done being whatever I have to be in order to just barely get by. I mean, I'll still do that, just not merely that, and I'm going to knuckle down and take some steps to being what I actually want to be. I've done a lot of thinking, and really, what I want is to be a librarian: a specialist in the art of research, who keeps the books on our shared knowledge as a species. Sure, sure, things are getting increasingly digital, and the internet is huge, but it doesn't have everything. Yet. But even if it does by the time I get my Master's in library science, I'm sure I'll be able to adapt to the state of the art and go from there.

Fourth, to pay for all this ambition, I'm going to be getting a second job (again), which means that even if I did have the emotional wherewithal to blog, I wouldn't have the time (since I won't be doing the crazy sleep schedule like I did last year). I'm doing this because I need steady income I can budget with to save up for things like tuition and a car and what-not. Which brings me to number five...

Fifth, I'm going to look into advertising for The Quantum Mechanic. The only reason it got written in the first place is because I never once had to have a conversation about marketability - that would have stopped the whole thing dead in its tracks. But now it's done and ready to go, I just need exposure to get some market penetration. I'm going to be looking into the in-house advertising services on CreateSpace - after all, they would probably have a clue what they're doing here - but if anyone has suggestions then I am all ears. As of last week, I'm approved for the Premium Catelog over at Smashwords, but there are problems. For one, I think it's blank. Like, I think the book is not present in the latest version I uploaded, because when I loaded it on Stanza, it showed the title page and then that was it. WTF. So I'm going to be working on that some more this week.

I still need to finish 101 Interesting Things, though. That's one of my long-term projects, and I'll see if I can come up with at least one interesting thing every weekend. That seems workable.

Wish me luck!


Jack Phillips said...

Congrats on deciding library science. That's actually something I've been looking into for awhile too. If I go this route for my own post-Navy career, I'd like to specialize in academic institutions. I'm having a real problem narrowing down what I want to do though. I'd love to go to law school but that plus then actually being a lawyer would take up so much time - so much so I don't think I'd be emotionally available to hypothetical wife and family. Bah, rambling on your blog. I'll just call you and talk to you in the near-ish future before I board the Eisenhower.

D said...

Hey, thanks! You're actually the one who got me interested in it, all those years ago when we were talking about what can be done with a philosophy degree (which seemed to boil down to go to grad school). Before that, I thought librarians just got to be around books all day (which is good) and put them away (which is bad), but looking on the ALA website and various other places on the web has me convinced that it's a much more exciting field than I'd ever thought. Talk to you soon, and if not, enjoy your flight!

Typhinius said...

It's usually good to do some "soul" searching, so long as you are going into it with the goal of resolving problems instead of just ruminating on them...and it seems you went into it with the right mentality and came out the other side with some perspective and direction which is awesome.

I don't know much about library science, so we'll have to discuss what all that entails at some point ;p

Zach L said...

I was a library page once.

It was my favorite job ever.

Jack Phillips said...

PS: I totally got your reference to Queen's "One Year of Love" as used on the Highlander soundtrack. I love Queen and Highlander.

Mat Wilder said...

I'll be sad to see you go. I haven't been reading your blog very long, but it's quickly become one of my favs.

Good luck with school.

I hope you keep commenting at Daylight Atheism at least!

Steve Bowen said...

Yeah D. What Mat said, I enjoy you anarchic style and will miss "she who chatters". please don't be a stranger around D.A

p.s TQM is even better in print.

J Myers said...

Any idea how to get TQM added to the book list on the weRead Facebook app? Those of us with FB accounts could then add it to our reading lists, and all of our friends would see it.

D said...

Hey, thanks for the well-wishing, everybody! J Myers, I'll look into that weRead thing.

D said...

J Myers, it looks like TQM is already up on weRead. I don't know if it's because of Amazon or what, but you can find it by searching for the ISBN: 1449962793.