That's about all there is to say about it: it's been far too long since I've updated here. To recap the past year or so: I lost my job at the end of July 2016, which gave me a five-month "break" from my daily routine, namely "find a new routine, where that routine is job-hunting." I have to admit, it was pretty bleak, and I was feeling very down on myself. We're all creatures of comfortable habits, and I certainly had grown comfortable to the point of complacency. But a new position in the new year set things aright for me -- a new environment, a new team, new skills -- everything I'd lacked, and for so long that I didn't even realize they were missing.
Unfortunately, that employer made some restructuring decisions within my new team, and not wanting to be caught off-guard twice in under a year, I built on the experience of the five-month misery and chose my own path this time. I left the new job, and started a new-new job. For someone that agonizes for months over how to use gift certificates, finding, applying, and accepting a new position like this is positively breakneck. Don't tell anyone, but after literally decades of resistance, I might be learning to accept change and even uncertainty into my day, even when it means tamping down my natural introversion and general unease around humans. Amazing times indeed!
One constant in all this flux, though, is the advancing of the year and the inevitability of November and NaNoWriMo. But this year, I'm even looking to shake up that routine a little bit. This year, I'm looking to break out of my self-imposed writing bubble. I'm banging the Nano drum at work, for example, saying "join me" instead of "please ignore the odd typing sounds." And I'm looking to attend the Night of Writing Dangerously this year, the fundraising write-a-thon held around the middle of the month by the NaNo organization. Logisitics and my own stick-in-the-mud-ness have always been my excuse, but I've outgrown the excuses. Actions are serving me better.
The other half of the attendance equation, of course, is the /raising funds/ portion, and I've even worked on my natural Midwestern resistance to asking for help to… ask for help. Or specifically, to ask for donations to NaNoWriMo, in the form of sponsoring me + rhino to attend. Here's my page for the event:
I have a lot of respect for the team behind NaNoWriMo, shaping what started as a kind of collective distributed flashmob and transforming it into a respected non-profit devoted to fostering writing and creativity, and teaching that Big Crazy Dreams aren't that unattainable after all. I truly do credit my years of participation for giving me the courage to change how I look at huge projects and to give me a mental mindset for chipping away at big problems. And I have made it a point to donate every year after that first wild ride. Is it coincidence that my donation years perfectly align with my Typewriter Brigade years? Of course not! Typing makes us kinder, more thoughtful, and (hopefully) more giving people. And that's a kind of change I have no trouble adapting to.