Remember that The Anxious Author post I wrote a few weeks back called 3 Alcoholic Drinks to Take the Edge Off? I really need to take my own advice this week and have a bottle to myself.
The last two weeks I’ve been laid up with a sprained ankle and it’s still impossible to put any weight on it. My walks to and from work, which were my only outdoor activities during lock-down, have disappeared. I can barely hobble to and from the bathroom on my crutches without physically falling in the bath. (Anyone cursed with terrible balance will know the struggle). Long story short, I’m starting to go mad.
Books and video games are the only things that make me feel that I’m not stuck in a tiny flat in the most populous city in the country during a heatwave. When you can’t go anywhere, pretending you can – and are – is the only cure.
This last few weeks I’ve been to the land of Skyrim, Hyrule and spent several weeks in New York. All the books on my TBR pile lately are mostly set in New York. Not complaining, it’s an amazing city and probably even has real life witches and vampires in there somewhere. I just need to stay a little longer than two weeks to find out.
This recovery period has taught me that escaping from the busy pace of life and escaping from pure boredom are two completely different things. Escaping from life is to completely ignore all the drama and problems going on and become entertained by other people’s much worse, much more interesting problems. Escaping from boredom involves grasping at anything that’ll keep your brain cells alive long enough to ride out your rut. Or until your ankle heals up.
Now I’ve finally experienced both, the importance of books, TV and games has never been clearer. Believe it or not, when I can walk I don’t get bored. I potter around until I find something interesting to do. I’ve never been bored a day in my life until this last few weeks. Just lately, reading, writing and shooting arrows at Falmer has been getting me out of bed and I couldn’t be more grateful.
Some people have developed the odd concept that art and media isn’t an important contribution to society. As an author, I didn’t really see my work as very important until the last few weeks. I took reading for granted because I could do it when I wanted and was spoilt for choice.
But I need to extend the biggest thank you to all the authors, artists, video game designers and creatives out there. You keep the world spinning by entertaining us and keeping us sane. For goodness sake, don’t ever stop!
Thanks for reading!