In These Hard Times, Sacrifices Must Be Made

29 Jul

So last week I blogged about my time management issues, and how I needed to make some changes.

Sadly, this week some of them have come to pass.

I have NOT quit my job or abandoned my family.  The missus disabused me of the former idea, and the onslaught of hate mail directed at even the notion of it disabused me of the latter.

(I suspect the missus might have organized some sort of bot email campaign on that second one, but I can’t prove it…yet.)

I’ve left the indie press I co-founded.

I won’t be MLing NaNoWriMo.

I loved being an ML.  It was a lot of work, consumed a lot of time, and occasionally threw sharp rocks at me from out of left field, but at the same time I found it very rewarding.  I loved the energy, the community, the sense of being in the middle of the ebb and flow of it all.

(And my ego loved getting the ‘atta boy’ emails from my nanos.  My ego did not love the low number of those ‘atta boy’ emails, but hey, what can you do?)

I’ve done Nano for nine years.  NINE YEARS!  I’ve been an ML for seven.  So for me, nano IS MLing.

I’m really going to miss it.  But as much as I hate giving it up, I just don’t have the time. Like that Cat’s Playing In The Dreidel song (or something along those lines), I don’t want my kids to grow up as heartless, empty shells of human beings because dear ol’ dad decided to rule with an iron fist over his regional nanos rather than rule with an iron fist over them.  Dictatorships tend to be inherited, so I need to focus on the family.

And you know what, seven years is a long time under my benevolent dictatorship (well, OK, I’ve actually been a co-ML for seven years, so I can’t claim all the despotism for myself…dammit).  This is a good thing.  Bring in some new blood, some fresh ideas.  Kick the old dog into the animal shelter so a younger dog with new tricks can show off.

All to the benefit of my dear regional nanos.  I hope they appreciate what that old dog has done for them as the shelter technician euthanizes it.

(The other solution was to neuter the old dog and end the cycle that way, but seeing as I’m the old dog, well…that idea just didn’t sit with me as well as being put to sleep.)

As Captain Kirk said in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, “Galloping around the month of November writing novels is for the young, Doctor.”

(I may have taken a few liberties with that quote.)

I do plan to participate in Nano this year, but just as a writer. Which reminds me, I really need to start outlining this year’s book.

Now Star Trek III: The Search for a New Co-ML begins.  No persons containing unstable proto-matter need apply.  That’s all my region needs right now, a co-ML who unexpectedly explodes.

(And for you trekkers out there, here’s an interesting link about the early version of the TNG writer’s bible.  I have no idea if it’s authentic or not, but it’s an intriguing read: )


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8 responses to “In These Hard Times, Sacrifices Must Be Made

  1. Anne Marie

    29 July 2011 at 7:06 am

    With all these changes, I hope you’re keeping something that’s fun and for you only. Otherwise, I think you might explode. And listen, I’m NOT cleaning that up. :p

    • ianmdudley

      30 July 2011 at 3:18 pm

      Hahahahaha! Oh, you were serious! 😉 Yes, I am keeping some things that are fun. My kids are fun (sometimes, anyway, not so much when they’re crying at 1am on a work night), and I do plan to continue writing. And when that isn’t enough, I just numb my brain with television.

  2. Commander in Chief

    29 July 2011 at 8:01 am

    I, too, have laid down my ML burden. I’m gearing up for grad school this year, and it’s looking like I’ll be moving house in November, and those things are ultimately more important than the ego strokes I’d get from MLing. I was lucky. I had TWO great co-MLs last year, both of whom are college students (read: boundless energy and very few commitments) who are carrying on after me. Hope you get the same.

    • ianmdudley

      30 July 2011 at 3:20 pm

      Wow! Looks like you’re going to be crazy busy. Glad you have trusted people to run things in your absence. My co-ML from last year is staying on, and I hope to recruit someone I think would do very well as the other co-ML.

      Good luck with grad school and the move!

  3. Lisa Eckstein

    29 July 2011 at 10:19 am

    Well done surviving the task for seven years. Three years nearly killed me! You were a great ML, and the region is so much better for all your hard work. I hope there are some promising prospects for taking over your position. (No, it won’t be me!)

    • ianmdudley

      30 July 2011 at 3:21 pm

      Dammit, and I was going to ask you! 😉 I’m hoping to have a definitive answer on my replacement soon; we’ll see.

  4. lauren

    29 July 2011 at 5:29 pm

    and so the baton is passed again… looks like it’s a good year for it with mr. baty moving on as well. i can speak from experience when i say it is quite a joy to actually be able to focus on just your (and by your, i mean my) writing without worrying about everyone else’s. best of luck and see you in november’s forums.

    • ianmdudley

      30 July 2011 at 3:24 pm

      Yeah. I made the decision several weeks ago, and was somewhat amused when I saw Chris Baty’s announcement. And it will be nice to not have to worry about other participants, or going hoarse from too much rah rah-ing at write-ins, That said, my region really does pretty much run itself.

      See you in the forums!


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