Wednesday, July 30, 2014

More change -- the kids are coming home!

Since I restarted this blog talking about all the changes that had occurred in my life over the past 18 months, I'll continue that with a new one. My oldest daughter, the one who married and moved away last September, is coming back home!

Well, sort of.

They had to move out of state because her husband, who I'll call Andrew for the purposes of this blog, still had one semester of college to finish. My daughter, who I'll call Erica, has two years of school left, but she put that on hold so he could finish up and then, hopefully, get a job teaching. She had already been accepted at a university about 45 minutes down the road from here (after doing community college for her first two years of college), so they were fairly limited in where they could go.

The teaching thing hasn't worked out yet for Andrew, but yesterday he was offered a position with a media company in the same city where she will be going to college! Better yet, that puts them 45 minutes from us to the west, and 45 minutes from the rest of my family (mom, sisters and their families) to the east. She and Andrew will be smack-dab in the middle of us all!

Good for all of us – though she and Andrew might get tired of us after a while, I don't know.

The challenge of it all is the timeframe. He starts his new job in twelve days. That's right, less than two weeks. They have no apartment, they live three-and-a-half hours' drive away, and they both work, so it's not as if the two of them have nothing but free time between now and then. There's also the issue of furniture, but we'll figure that one out as we go.

Just as soon as I tell you all I'm back, ready to start publishing a few pieces under my own name again, I find I'm going to be a busy little bee over the next few weeks, doing a lot of traveling down there and back, helping them get set up, helping them move – all built around my day job.

It's a good challenge to have, though, and I can't tell you how ecstatic I am they will be moving this close.

And, since I wasn't blogging last year when the two of them were married, and I am talking about them now, I'm going to share a couple of wedding photos. The first is my wife and I escorting the lovely bride toward the ceremony and her waiting husband-to-be. The second pic is my mom with the two of them, and the third one is the happy couple. And yes, the dude is that tall – he's 6'7" (but he still can't take me on the basketball court. Just don't tell him I said that.)

Until next time (I'll post again this weekend), happy trails!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Back in the old ball game...


I wasn't sure what to say in the rebirth of my little blog, John's Dark Scribblings, so I thought I'd just say hello.

After all, what does one start a conversation after a nearly 14-month absence?

So, hello, and welcome back.

I have been away from this little corner of the world for quite some time I suppose, and I should explain.

A lot happened in my life last year. I suppose that's always the case for a lot of people, but in my case there were some big, major life changes.

Tragically, my father passed away in February of 2013. I come from a strong family where we've been taught to just keep moving forward, keep working, never let all the bad stuff drag you too far down. So that's what I did, that's what all my family did in the aftermath of our loss – we just kept moving forward.

Between that loss in the late winter and the fall of 2013, there were more changes for our family, more joyous ones to be sure, but change none-the-less. My second oldest daughter went out into the world, going to the University of Virginia, in late August. A couple of weeks later my oldest daughter married a fine young man we've known for years and moved out of state.

Like I said, some major changes.

In the midst of it all I kind of lost my way in my writing, aided by a confusing, on-again, off-again policy by my employer that prohibited any employees from doing any writing or editing outside the company. Even fiction. Except when it didn't. Like I said, terribly confusing.

I never stopped writing – I still write and edit at work on the job as a newspaper editor (though just between you, me and the virtual fence post, my job has become more about compiling and writing reports, meetings, and paperwork than it has been about actual honest-to-goodness journalism -- you know, writing and editing work that is germane to your community). And I didn't call it quits entirely with the fiction work – I do some, let's say specialized type of writing under a pseudonym (and no, I'm not tell you anything else about it, at least not for now).

But the work that moved me – the horror that I once wrote, the mystery and historical novels I outlined - just kind of drifted away from me. Or maybe I drifted away from them. I arrived at a point where I couldn't just put my head down and keep working. I still had to do my day job, because I have a family that depends on me for income and a staff that depends on my to lead it and a company that's paying me to do that job. Beyond that I just wasn't sure what I wanted in my writing, or my life for that matter. So I stopped blogging about my work, even took this blog down from public view for quite a while.

Now I'm back, and I'll be returning to some of my writing roots over the coming months and years. I won't be terribly prolific – I have a burgeoning pseudonym career to keep going (well, okay, a pseudonym CAREER may be overstating it, but it's something I'll keep up for a while). I also still have the full-time job to keep working at, and I need to spend at least a little time with the family.

But I will be publishing a few horror and mystery tales here over the coming months – short stories, a novella or two, I'll be releasing a novel in August and another one in November. Beyond that? We'll just see how it goes.

For now I'll just say hello, and glad you're back with me.