Today is the first day of the rest of my life. For reals, though. Earlier this year I made a decision to spend some time being selfish, leaving my frustrating but ultimately swell job to spend a year or so writing, attempting to write, and figuring out exactly what’s next for me. And here I am. Day one.
I’ve always wanted to be a writer, even before I knew I wanted to be a writer. As a kid, when I played with my GI Joe guys (action figures from the 80s cartoon) I gave each character a new identity and code name. My lead characters were Mike (Mutt) and Kelly (Cover Girl) who didn’t really have a lot to do on the show so they were ripe for characterization. Their daughter was Scarlett (Scarlett, okay, I wasn’t the best. But I was ten.). I think they had super powers. Occasionally, a Star Wars figure would figure into the mix. And, because I was raised on television, every time I would sit down to play I would start with a “previously on…” recap of the last time I played and when I decided I was done for the moment I would end with a “next time on…”
After that I wanted to be a comic book artist, but I was never good at drawing anything other than people in superhero poses. I plotted out my first book in sixth grade. It was me and my friends as kid detectives. It was pretty awful. But what all of these things had in common was this need to tell stories. After high school and college this developed into a more focused sense on screenplays and novels. Nothing produced or developed. I’ve never been able to spend time pursuing it while also having a way to pay bills. Now I have that.
For my current life, my previously on involved working a large video game company (It’s Activision, I have no need to be precious). I worked on games ranging from Call of Duty, Destiny, Quake, and Doom to Skylanders, Guitar Hero, Marvel Ultimate Alliance, Transformers and Shark Tale (a lowlight). I had a tremendous amount of fun producing events on five continents for over fifteen years. I was able to do live broadcasts (digital and TV), which has given me a rush like nothing else. Ultimately, though, I realized I had no passion for gaming. I hadn’t picked up a controller to play one of our titles in nearly three years. I was growing angry and picking fights with people. Little things would set me off. I needed a break.
I could not have asked for a better circumstance of leaving. I resigned in January. They convinced me to stay on contract through June. I was able to plan a lot better for the non-working time, which is now.
I planned financially and creatively, but I never really took the time to figure out how I was going to start this new status quo. Thus here. Thus the blank page. I don’t know what is going to come first. I have plans for a few screenplays, a few TV pilots, a few novels, two plays, even a podcast. I don’t know which muse will seduce me first. But I’m excited to find out. And I hope to spend a little more time here as well. This will be more of a resource for me to discuss/dissect entertainment while also dropping some essays/life updates/short stories.
Everyone has been asking me how I feel? I haven’t had time to even think about it. I worked up until the end of the day on Thursday, spent the weekend on a vacation with my family and returned home yesterday. Today is day one. How do I feel? I’m scared/excited/sad/wary/optimistic/cynical/driven. So, pretty much like every day. Definitely curious to see what happens. It’s fun having no idea what could happen in the next few months. Hope those aren’t famous last words.