The Post-PAX Whirlwind

Sometimes it feels impossible to find a peaceful moment. An afternoon with nothing to do except lounge around and take in the Spring air doesn’t exactly come often for me. Between balancing work, writing, and school, I find that I’m perpetually stuck in a constant state of motion.

I’m not complaining, though. I love what I do. I just get tired sometimes.

Two days ago I got back from PAX East. The Boston convention is a celebration of video games. It’s a good one at that, and I find myself happy with the weekend I spent covering some exciting — and fucking weird — games.

I was fortunate enough to sell (at least) one story to an outlet. It’s about a game that I’m personally very excited for. I won’t go into details before the story is published, but based off of my first draft, I think it could be on of my best pieces yet.

Ironically, I think the piece is going to be good because I was under the gun. Deadlines, even when they seem far away, always come creeping up. I spent the majority of my train ride back from Boston trying to transcribe thirty minutes of audio on an overcrowded, speeding bullet. By the time I got back home on Sunday evening, the only option I had was to pass the fuck out. This meant that I only had Monday to write, edit, and generally put something coherent and thoughtful together before turning my story in.

Oh yeah, and I had to go to work at 3PM.

Somehow, it all came together. But maybe that’s because I’ve grown accustomed to a life that doesn’t really give me time to reflect.

That’s a pretty accurate sentiment for anyone who writes, especially all the crazies like me who just want to cover video games. By the nature of the industry — pre-release hype, day one reviews, a game that is forgotten by week 2 — we’re conditioned to always keep moving forward.

Even at PAX, I found it difficult to really linger and take in everything that stood before me. I was surrounded by tens of thousands of people who love the same shit that I do, entrenched in a building that contained some of the most exciting games on the horizon, and all I could really do was keep marching to my next appointment. I appreciated what I saw, of course, but I was never in a position to let it all sink in until I made the trek back to my hotel.

So, if PAX was a whirlwind and life immediately after returning from the trip was chaotic, how do we stay sane?

I don’t know the answer right now, but I do know that by batteries are charging and I’m more eager to write than ever. On my last blog post — the one that I essentially relaunched Wizard of Radical during — I alluded to the fact that I had been burnt out. Going to an event like PAX East really revitalized me, though.

Somehow, one of the most jam-packed weekends of my life made me realize that I live for this shit. I like the cacophony of piling work, rapid-fire typing, and invoices that never seem to be have enough money on them to justify what I’m doing.

I was built for this.

Also, I met Tim Rogers, and I think just saying ‘hi’ and telling him how much I appreciate his work meant a lot to me. It’s crazy to say, but I think he might have seen the look in my eye — the one where I’m really excited, maybe a bit nervous, and utterly exhausted — and understood where I’m coming from.

At least I hope. Otherwise, he probably just thought I was crazy.

I’ll have more to write once I start to dig myself out from under the preview pieces I have piling up.


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