Sometimes, like it or not, it’s time to admit your shortcomings.

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I am a curious mix of many things: an awful lot of Internet, social pressure, parenthood, genre bias… and the list goes on. So much, from so many often contrary sources. Music is an essential part of that, so is computer gaming. Writing, photography… you get the picture. Except, in the last two years, a lot of the foundations on which this picture was created has slipped away, out of my control.

Therefore, we have reached the point where it becomes necessary to go find the original pictures on which my puzzle is created and work out what pieces are missing or damaged. Except, in that process, there’s a revelation: I’m not restricted by that original look and feel. There is absolutely no requirement to keep living in the 80’s, or pretending it’s the 90’s. Nostalgia is what underpins other people’s lives and not mine.

You can create different compositions with the same pieces. Who knew?

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My long form fiction, it transpires, has become an incredibly useful timeline when it comes to demonstrating how much has been learnt in the last decade. It also means that this work is not anywhere near the quality I need to try and sell myself with. With an important couple of submissions coming up, time to be brutally honest. What you think is great has elements of that within, but needs a heck of a lot of work.

Poetry right now is going great guns: proof of that’s becoming apparent. Short stories also have a phenomenal amount going for them, and working on those is absolutely worth time and effort. The long form, however, needs you to evolve further than is already the case. You’re not good enough. Not yet. It’ll come, in time, just like everything else has and for now, getting upset about what’s been lost is counter-productive.

Time to accept reality before drawing a line in the sand.

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Making life changes is hard work, kids. You don’t sleep properly. Lots of old stuff you’d conveniently forgotten about rises up and attempts to ruin progress made. Just remember that conflict makes the most potent source material. What you are now, after all, is a form of intellectual evolution.

Time to work out what I can save with confidence.