No, I haven’t fallen off the face of the Earth.
No, I haven’t given up writing.
No, I haven’t forgotten about my fans.
The last few months have been nothing short of interesting. It really has felt like someone has cursed me to “live in interesting times”, and all I want to do is get back into my writing.
From my last post, I’d been busy focussed on the creation of a couple of specialised papers for a closed readership and, while they were very well received, they are unlikely to ever see a widespread release. How well they were received gave me some motivation that I hadn’t lost my touch with writing, even if it wasn’t what I was expecting to sit down and write.
I’d also been committed to editing work on a completed out-of-genre story, but had been quite stop-start on it. I’d been hanging on to things, worrying a little what my regular readers would make of it, and perhaps even using that as an excuse not to do any work on it. It almost doesn’t matter, as I’d gotten to the point that things started to flounder, and not much has happened over the last couple of months with it. Things were looking promising for a while, with quite a significant amount of rewriting and editing breathing new life into the text, but it fell into the same morass that everything else did.
And what a morass it was. Or perhaps is.
Some demons from my past came back to haunt me in a way that I wasn’t prepared for. I’d dealt with them successfully each time previously, so didn’t feel like this was going to be any different this time around.
Around 20 months ago, I started being plagued by some rather unpleasant history, so I did the mature and responsible thing and went to get help to overcome the issues that it was causing. Things really felt like they were getting better, only to get much worse at the start of 2015.
Much, much, much worse.
I sought help again, this time through a different source. Unfortunately, the help didn’t. It made things worse and, after struggling through all of it until the end of 2015, I thought I’d managed to get things back under some semblance of control, only for things to finally go pop earlier this year.
It took the help of my family, in particular my wife, to realise that the “assistance”
that had been provided last year had not fixed anything at all, and that the control I thought I’d re-established was nothing more than a thin veneer over what was a worsening problem.
Any effort to read, research, or read for pleasure felt like an insurmountable struggle. Perhaps I should have been using it as a sign.
I did finally get the help I needed, and am picking my way back out of the wreckage of something that shouldn’t have been allowed to get so far. I have started reading again, and am finding it a joy.
My muse has flickered back into life, even if briefly. My fear that I had lost whatever spark I once had seems to be unfounded.
Is she going to be the same as what she was a couple of years ago? I don’t know, but I am keen to find out.
I have started writing again -- just little things for now. I have one of my biggest fans very keen to start reading my writing again and, for that, I really do thank my wife for encouraging me to take things back up again.
As I continue to find my way back into the light, I’m finding some of the passion that had gone missing. The passion for reading. The passion for writing. The passion for my family. The passion for my lover - my wife.
Even now, I look back at the mess of what things became and realise with a bit of a heavy heart that there are some very horrid traumatic events from my past that will never leave me. They may not bother me day to day, but there will be times when they drag their horrors back out in front of me to relive. And it is something that I will live with until the end of my days.
Is it PTSD? Is it depression? Is it something worse? It’s funny that some professionals really don’t want to get close to making a determination, or even suggest what things might be.
At the end of the day, a label isn’t going to change the fact that I have to live with the memories and sights, sounds, and smells of those events.
The dead don’t bother me -- I am haunted by the ghosts of the living.I can never endorse enough - if you think you’re having issues, SEEK HELP. It might be hard to open up to someone about things, but it’s much harder not to.