30 April 2007

Everything and Nothing

There have been a multitude of topics that I have wanted to write about of late, but I have managed to actually commit words on none but the actual play for the game I am running. And even there I am now a week behind.

The simple excuse? Tiredness. But I've always been tired; everything I have ever written (well, almost) has been written through tiredness. The difference this time is work, and specifically the type of work; I am processing XML files for a publishing firm, and this means that my days are spent looking endlessly at black text on a white background and adding, subtracting, or altering the contents as required. This is not only as dull as the muffled ring of a tuneless bell but it is killing for my eyes; thus whilst I love writing with a passion - even if I only ever manage to do it distractedly - it is possibly the last thing I want to do in my evenings and weekends (well, that and another hobby of mine: reading!). Images on screens are fine - I don't see any during the day and there is significant difference from text - but reading and writing are out. I swear I only managed to get the last summary of the WFRP game written up before the following session out of sheer bloody mindedness and because others, too, get discernible value from it.

In the last month I have started, planned and canned (or put on indefinite hold) posts about Life on Mars, my submission to the next generation of peer pressure in buying an Xbox360 (in intention, primarily, to beat drunken Scotsmen at cricket!) and the climactic stages of the cricket world cup, along with England's pathetic failures and coming transitions. What I most want to write is a piece on how violence is oft over-used in media - be it book, film or game. Not a decrying of violence, explosions and action, not a "videogames ate my baby!" nor "terminator films breed nazi killing machines!" but a viewpoint on how violence and combat are often the least interesting resolutions to dramatic conflict. Not that they are bad: that they are (very often) boring compared with some alternatives. I still plan this, and I might put the long weekend next weekend to good use yet.

My mind has been kept active thinking about things to write instead of writing them (and the idea loss as a result has been staggering), but mostly it has been shutting down all day. Trained monkey, reporting for duty!

On the plus side, this past weekend was top notch. Out with work folks on Thursday for a few more than planned, friend down from Up North on the Friday for a catch up, natter and beers, then a weekend just outside Bicester with nothing planned but lost of gaming. I wasn't even deterred by the fact it was Star Trek-inspired! I even (finally) saw a couple of episodes of Firefly; although I found the pilot episode a long way short of inspiring, it hinted at why everyone I know raves about it, and the actual episode we viewed thereafter had its moments. Visually it did not work for me; otherwise... it sorta did. Enough to make me seriously consider trying to blag the DVDs of someone long enough to watch it all, anyway.

And this coming week will be good, too; it's a two day working week for me (today just gone, and tomorrow). Wednesday and Thursday will be spent in Bristol and going to two gigs in two nights with a good friend, then there is a four day weekend as I have Friday off as well, and next Monday is a Bank Holiday. Hurrah! Hopefully some shenanigans involving shooting aliens (and Scotsmen, and possibly even Lawyers) in the face can be found, along with some time to write, and work on where Splitting Heirs is going... Oh, and book gown hire for my PhD graduation; bloody swindle of a price!


Garry G said...

Won't be shooting me in the face as I'm Amsterdammed on Friday. Mibbe next week eh?

Anonymous said...

You need to give Firefly more time. I didn't like it at first, by the time I'd watched the whole series from start to finish I could describe it one way only: a work of art.

Worth giving the full try anyway.


Garry G said...

I agree about the Firefly thing. The first episode didn't really hook me and I thought the war flashbacks were done very well at all but it keeps getting better and better.

Graham said...

Ah, of course... t'was this weekend, that. Have fun Garry ;)

Yeah there was enough in Firefly to convince me to give it a chance (though dependent on finding someone willing to lend me the discs; it didn't impress enough to inspire buying them). In itself this surprised me as my view of Joss Whedon is very much one of "overrated hack": I could never see the brilliance in Buffy that others could, but I was impressed enough with the hints of character and drama that I would probably be able to get over the visual foibles that did not quite work for me.