So tomorrow is a day of romance, and tiny chocolates, and even if you’re a skeptic at heart it is a time spent a little easier with someone you love. It makes me think about the wonderful things my partner Holly has done and helped me with, allowing to confidently pursue the idea that I am a writer. And while I love her dearly, and the life I lead, I can’t help but miss some of the parts I don’t have.
I come from a family of geeks, nerds, and oddities. To be accepted into the family is to prove your worth as a stranger of convention, and I wouldn’t want them any other way. Many nights were spent with paper, pens, and dice -roleplaying into the night. It sounds silly and geeky, and you’re right, but it was a time where we put down our phones, and used our minds.
My brothers and my friends live fairly far away from me now, so I can’t just suddenly decide to roleplay a new idea, and see how interesting it is based on their reactions and engagement. Some of the best, or at least funniest ideas have come from those moments where my ideas mix together with their personalities and decisions.
I have read magazines and agencies saying that they didn’t want a story about your roleplaying game (like it’s somehow wrong) which I take as snobbery such as the types of people who turn their nose up at your genre choice, just because they don’t understand, which means it’s wrong.
I’m sure there are people who just tread the same of Tolkien worn ground, desperate to produce something new, without actually doing something new, but that’s never been the point for me. Roleplaying is just another way to find your ideas, and it’s social and fun, which isn’t something you find with the solitary life of a writer.
I don’t believe there is a right way to go about inspiration, mainly because I only know what works for me, and then i’m still finding out new things in the oddest of places. I don’t think I could tell someone how to think and create in a convincing manner, so instead I just let them do it their way, offering advice if they want any.
I’m currently writing my second novel, a children’s story set in the city of Midnight, a place locked in time and full of masks. The ideas came from a variety of places, starting with a bridge, a pattern on a strip of wallpaper, and a childhood full of ideas about never wanting to grow up.
In the past i’d have talked it out to my younger brother, where we’d roleplay, talk, and joke around. I could try out something similar, sometimes just so I could hear the ideas out loud. It’s not like that now, and a lot of the time i’m keeping these ideas in my head, or scribbling them down onto paper.
It’s sad to think I might not get time like that again, spent into the hours of the morning, creating stories with my friends and family. Thing’s are better now, and i’m writing more in a way that makes me happy, but some days i’m still little sad that they’re not just around the corner.