See, I’m bad at this.
It’s been over a month since I blogged last, and part of that is due to a narrowed focus in my life overall. A few weeks ago I found that my attention was beginning to wander, into something extremely goofy: I decided that I wanted to build a poker table with hole-cameras and create a setup that allowed me to film some of my home poker games. The intent was to create a show that I could toss up on YouTube.
I became temporarily obsessed. For at least a full week, the idea was in every waking moment of thought for me. The research I put into the possibility was staggering. Every day I’d spend time searching forums, reading up on cameras, working out a budget, checking into editing and card-display software, and trying to figure out how my house would be laid out to accommodate it. I even went so far as to buy a video camera to test its functions – which is actually what snapped me out of the obsession.
I had set up this video camera in my poker room and let it film, trying to gauge its quality and the length of time it could record. While I was watching the video, something in my brain snapped me back to reality. I don’t fucking have time for this! was the revelation I finally came to. I barely had time to do the things already on my plate, including finishing my fucking novel (or: “the whole reason I quit my job”), much less add something else as work-intensive as producing, editing, and publishing and amateur poker show.
After my brief bout with insanity I decided to figure out what the important tasks in my life were and narrow the field. I cut out a lot of chaff, and I refocused myself to four broad categories: my book, my house, my podcasts, and poker. If it doesn’t fall into one of these categories, I can’t justify focusing on it – and I completely forgot about my blog.
My book is the clear priority. The text is finished and I’m on to revisions now. I have a copy-editor friend who offered to do an editing pass on it for me, and I need to get the second draft done before I send it off to him. Prior to this renewed focus I wasn’t concentrating on the book hardly at all, and I realized just how fucking nuts that was. The book is the life.
My house is roughly equal priority, and mostly just includes doing chores. That was the deal, right? I’m able to leave my day job to concentrate on my writing as long as I’m willing to take on the vast majority of the housework, since my wife will now be the family breadwinner. In addition to the daily tasks, we are remodeling one room and re-arranging the house layout, so there’s a lot of work to be done there and it all needs to be finished rather quickly.
My podcasts are important to me, even though they don’t provide any real income or benefit. One of them – After The Fact – is ending after almost four years, and I want it to go out with a bang. The other – Trade Secrets – will be my new ongoing focus. I have more fun preparing for and recording Trade Secrets than I do with most other things in my life. It’s one of the greatest crews of people I’ve ever worked with, and our conversations are insanely fun.
If you’ve read my blog before you understand the position of poker in my life. Focusing on it is something I was lacking for a while, and it was beginning to show in my results. I’d been on a several week long losing streak that had begun to shake my confidence. That was unacceptable – especially right now – because I’m about to go compete in a couple of events at the World Series of Poker. Once I drew poker back into my crosshairs, my performance turned around and I’ve started getting that confidence back.
Everything else – at least from a “work” perspective – is of less importance. I’ll do my best to still fire a blog post up more often than every five weeks. During my trip to Vegas for the WSOP I’ll be blogging regularly and even posting some video blogs, but those will be primarily poker-focused. Hopefully I’ll be able to keep it up once I get back.