Recharging Batteries

I have been silent for an entire month, not posting here, not tweeting, barely answering emails, et cetera. This deserves an explanation. And that necessarily entails some introspection.

First and most importantly, I need to apologize to my friends for up-and-leaving, effectively committing Internet suicide. I gave no one any prior warning. Instead I just stopped showing up, pretty rude on my part. So I apologize for that.

I needed some time away from both my computer and programming. If you do anything long enough, as I have with programming since 1993, you are bound to run into a rut. Remember when Michael Jordan suddenly quit basketball to go play baseball? I guess it’s kind of like that.
I need something different, something to re-energize myself.

That energy came in the form of studying other media like film and anime. I am a fan of both, so a great deal of it was self-indulgent, but I did spend a lot of time analyzing what worked and what didn’t, what left an emotional impact and what fell flat, what made me laugh
out loud and what made me groan at stupid jokes. I cannot claim to have learned everything about writing from the experience, but it taught me certain pitfalls to avoid, e.g. showing a character act according to his motivation and then having a damned five-minute long exposition explaining why he did it even though it was already well understood by that point. This is a classic example of *show
vs. tell.*

As far as programming is concerned, I’ve fallen far behind. Fortunately my friends have been very supportive, even concerned about my well being, and have never thrown it in my face that I’ve failed to pull my own weight this month. This gives me a new, revised sense of vigor where I feel ready to get out there and attack as many challenges as I can before the end of the year.

I intend to return to a normal updating schedule. In the mean time I’ll be working on our game that I’ve mentioned before, the shmup/RPG hybrid. I’ve decided to make the entire player/enemy bullet engine available for free for other developers so that don’t have to re-invent the wheel and can improve on our own work. Now to only make it worth that time and interest.

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