What a Horrible Month to Have a Curse… Oh, yeah, and the Kell Inkston October 2023 update.

Sick of the overwhelming amount of quirky and goofy Halloween Music blasting around the internet right now?

No? Well neither am I, but here’s something sort of different anyways: “kinda” Spooky Music.

Castlevania SotN is not only one of the very best side-scrolling adventure games ever made (the slang term for the genre is metroidvania , by jove!) but packed with some of the coolest “dark castle” themed soundtracks as well. Pretty enjoyable on repeat for those who, like myself, need a little bit of atmosphere when writing.

Anyway, let’s talk about what’s going on for the month… it’s not much.

Artist Reflection: You’re 1 person

Oh yeah, you know it’s bad if I’m starting with a reflection.

For the longest time I’ve attempted to do just about everything as a self-publisher: publication, cover design, formatting, editing, ads and marketing, reader engagement, as well as fighting an ongoing stream of irritating emails. What’s more I operate this website, write lore entries, and answer emails for readers, which can often take as much as half an hour per person if it’s a really well thought-out one.

Now, I’m not saying that I don’t enjoy any of these things, in fact reader mail is one of my favorite problems to have, but pulling away from it now with the new publishing contract, it’s helped disconnect me enough to take stock of the actual time I spend writing versus managing the writing.

And it’s insane, actually – the ratio has flipped.

In my younger days: less skilled and less dedicated as I was, I got more writing done overall… How? I would lay around all day eating ramen and watching TV like a total slob! I would sit down to write maybe an hour or two a day before running off to play video games or go to bed five hours early or something kooky like that.

The change now is quite simple to identify: I’m choosing to do other things. I’ve blinded myself with the belief that all these little things (formatting, marketing, engagement, website hosting, etc etc etc) somehow bolster the one big thing (writing, and technically editing) that really, really counts.

Developing audio and print editions for books is important, but across all those dimensions, a publisher would do that for me with these upcoming books, and it’s a bit of a shock to realize how much additional time I’ve found myself with… to actually write.

That said… will I? I have so many real-life responsibilities now, I’m becoming a little concerned about the future. I don’t doubt that I’ll finish the books and the contract out on time, but with the way things are going, will I be so busy being distracted by all the “little things” that I won’t be able to write everything I wanted to write?

Anyway, the big thought I wanted to share here is that it’s easy to get gobbled up in all the secondary and tertiary tasks aside from actually sitting down and doing the work. Nothing creates books other than creating a book, and I think I need to adjust myself better to understand that. I need to find a way to complete more of what I write with less overhead and “maintenance” – as silly as that may sound.

Food for thought, perhaps?

A second publishing contract?

This one is more of a one-off, but it turns out that the same publisher I got up with also wanted to get a short story of mine for an upcoming anthology of theirs. I did, so more details to follow about its publishing.

It’s an entirely new short story of mine, and in an entirely new genre from my usual. No one but me has seen it as of this writing, so I hope you enjoy it when it’s out some time later this year.

Conclusionus (not a real word but it sounds fun)

I hope you’re doing well out there, wherever you are. I recognize we’re living in what seems to be an increasingly complex world that requires increasingly complex sets of knowledge, but do remember to keep sight of the main things – keep what’s most important the most important, whatever that may be.

Please take care, and I hope to see you fuzzy and warm for next month’s November newsletter.

All the best,

Kell Inkston

8. An increasingly poorly-drawn Kell collapses in a states of utter stupefaction at the state of his World and a hideously nasty society he arrogantly refuses to understand.

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