One of the worst feelings I have that isn’t a result of my questionable brain chemistry and varying mental health is having a fun, interesting creative work that I’ve produced but cannot share with the people who would be most interested in it. I love creating stuff just to make it, but I want to share the things I create and like with other people. Partly to help make them (the stuff I’ve made) better, partly to share something I think people will like, and then also partly for the good, good serotonin hit I get whenever someone likes a thing I’ve created.
Right now, I wrote this very fun short story to help me get into the mind of a D&D character I’m playing, and while I was able to share it with my primary reader friend and the DM of the campaign the character was in, I can’t share it with the other players. We’ve all got just oodles of secrets. None of us trust each other. I even created a bit of a hot-water incident by doing something in-character that might seem like a betrayal but is really just my character being an idiot (can’t get specific because I don’t know if we’ll have played our next session by the time this goes up). All because we don’t trust each other.
And this story has some big secrets and provides an insight into my character that they have to earn. I can’t just give it to them. We have to play it out in-game, or never see it happen because my character has gotten himself killed doing something dumb or, as he would put it, merely inadvisable.
I just dislike having something cool and fun and awesome and not being able to share it. I write because I love to tell stories, I love having stories to tell, and I love sharing stories with people. I play D&D for the same reasons. So I really enjoy when I can cross those streams and write something for a D&D game and then share it with people who are invested in that game. It just feels good. And it sucks when I have to wait to share stuff! I can’t even post it here because maybe they read my blog and I can’t let that be how they find out about certain aspects of my character and his background.
Someday, I’ll post it. Eventually, after either the campaign falls apart, my character dies, or all the secrets come out, I will share that story. I will show a moment that defines my character as our game began and then share another one that will define who he is at the time of the sharing. Because, fuck, I just love telling stories. It’s my favorite thing to do. I have so many stories inside me that the ripcord escape from my not-actually bottomless pit of depression isn’t therapy or alcoholism or whatever. It’s writing challenges. Writing stabilizes my mood and helps me make decisions and helps me work through stuff I’m not ready to deal with and it gives me something cool (though also sometimes heavy and emotionally difficult) to share with other people.
A lot of people have called me lucky for finding my calling so early in life. I have complicated feelings on the matter, given that this developed as a survival trait based on the one aspect of my personality that isn’t a result of my parents or brother traumatizing me. My entire life is complicated, and it’s difficult to pick out things that are just good from the mess of my first two decades of life, so I don’t like to talk about how “luck” factors in (also partly due to the bitter thought that lucky people don’t go through what I have). I will admit, though, that knowing what fulfills me and what I want out of life is incredibly helpful. I just wish I had the time to create more and could share this one really cool story. Ugh. Maybe someday.