A Boring Life

I mentioned before that I felt inspired by Jay Lake, and I wanted to talk about that a little more.  One thing that inspires is his prodigious output (over 240 short stories and 7 novels since 2001).  Another is his commitment to keep on writing even during his fight with cancer (hang in there Jay).  But what really impresses me is his dedication to having a boring life.

That’s not a jab at Jay…that’s how he summed up how he finds time to produce so much work.  He mentioned this in an interview Mur Lafferty conducted with him on episode 131 of Mur’s excellent “I Should Be Writing” podcast.  Jay said he doesn’t watch TV and doesn’t play games, and that’s how he finds time to write.

Finding time to write has long been my problem, or at least that’s how I phrased it before.  But truthfully, the issue is how I prioritize my writing.  The last few years, I’ve let recreation–primarily video games, PC games, roleplaying games–take priority over writing.  And whether it’s guilt over letting my writing slide, or a mid-life crisis making me feel like I’m wasting my life playing, or whatever you want to call it, I haven’t been enjoying games much lately.

Jay said that everyone consumes, but only some of us produce.  I’m feeling the need to be productive again.  The last time I was in writing-mode, a friend was baffled by the fact that I would work a full-time job and then come home and do more work (on a writing project).  I think I’m eager to baffle him some more.

Doctor Who Season 5 Premiere

Doctor Who title card 2010

The latest season of Doctor Who began airing last night on BBC America.  I liked the premiere episode very much, and I’m looking forward to seeing more of Matt Smith as the 11th Doctor.  I also liked that although the show was set in the present, it did involve a little time travel, which often (strangely enough) seems unusual for the show.

The BBC America airing also featured a few behind-the-scenes comments by executive producer/lead writer Steven Moffat.  I’ve been a fan of his since his BBC series Coupling, and of course his involvement in Doctor Who starting in 2005.  (He wrote “Blink”, the best episode so far!)  In the commentary, he talked a bit about what inspired some ideas this latest episode, such as the crack in his daughter’s wall.  I know I’m not doing it justice here, but it was interesting stuff.

Did you watch it?

Space Opera

I’m collaborating with Shane Jackson (remember that name) on a novel, and we decided on space opera as our genre.  Since the most recent space opera I’d read was Mike Resnick’s Widowmaker (from 1996), I wanted an update on what the field was like now.

Wandering the aisles at Borders, I found a short story collection called The New Space Opera 2 (2009, edited by Gardner Dozois and Jonathan Strahan).  Man, it’s been ages since I read a short story, because I’ve been focusing on novel writing and felt that novel reading would be the best preparation.  But I’m really liking these stories.

There are a lot of great contributors here too…Cory Doctorow, Elizabeth Moon, Mike Resnick, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, John Scalzi, Bruce Sterling, Bill Willingham, and more.  And Jay Lake, who’s been particularly inspiring to me recently, but I’ll save that for another post.

Anyway, great stuff here.  I’m six stories in, and hungry for more.  I was tempted to head right for the Resnick story, but since it’s toward the end I’ll save that for a nice dessert.

Hello World

Hello world.  This is what I figure will be my blog covering writing, personal stuff, miscellaneous rants, whatever.  I’m not sure the best way to start a blog, so let’s just call it started and get on with it.