To say that my life wasn’t a cushy, get-up-late go-to-bed-later kind of thing, where the idea of pressure beyond the occasional missed deadline or time sensitive pitch, would be pretty ridiculous. I know this, I’m pretty sure most know this. Obviously I’m not firing on all cylinders, but regardless, even if I do make a go of it freelancing entirely, working from home, at the very least, breeds a calm workplace, at the very least.
This, also, breeds a steady, monotonous rhythm that forces each day together, each one clumsily grafted onto the next, until you’re faced with a giant, floppy behemoth that is the past few months, and you realise that you’re just throwing wood onto the pile of blobby days. They’re undefined, formless, amorphous, and oh so fragile. Like a hundred water balloons taped together, it only takes one needle to have the whole thing go from unwieldy structure to cascading freedom.
And so, when I’m asked to leave my house to cover a game, suddenly I’ve got something that, while definitely still being work, is so much more so that I can look forward to it almost like I would a holiday, should I be part of WorkoBot 925, for a few reasons, and they’re all going to make me sound like the pasty, antisocial recluse that I so desperately don’t want to be. But needs must, I suppose.
Firstly, it gets me out of the house, out of this middle class to a fault village, and out of this Conservative with Caps Lock firmly held down county, and into London, where I can just waft through the underground like a bad smell, belched out at the nearest station to spend the day in the company of PR and other journalists. My people. Or, at least, the people I want to be my people. Rub shoulders, settle into a social-friendly open bar stupour, and write feverishly into a notepad about whatever game it is that I’m there to look at/play/sigh about. And that’s pretty great.
There’s little more useful in a motivational sense than to spend some time around other passionate people. Isolated as I am on a day to day basis, it’s often difficult to get that positive feedback loop going, when all you really need is a little push before you fling the stabalisers off into the nearest bush and wobble your way onto independent thought. We’re parasitic creatures, really, and a bit of creative cannibalism is often the best medicine when it comes to requiring a little inspiration, some fuel for your writing fingers. They’re not very economical, really, and they break a lot.
So this is why I’m looking forward to Wednesday, when I get to elope for a day, and recharge my batteries before facing the ever-depressing face of living at home, rent-free, no hours, playing games all day and writing about them. I know, life really sucks, and I appreciate your sympathy.