Last month I posted about Murray passing away. Naturally, this month isn’t going to be easy. This is the first time I haven’t had a pet in the house in more than fifteen years, which is my entire freelance career. You really don’t realize how much of your daily schedule is based around pets (particularly sick pets) until they’re gone. I still have moments where I feel like I need to head back home to feed Murray, or that I can’t stay out too late because I didn’t get a sitter for him.
Yes, it’s hard losing Murray. But I also learned a lot. It’s forced me to reassess my current situation, and find new ways of dealing with things. My work process is slowly changing, for example — as much as I hate to say it, I’m a little more productive now that I don’t have to stop every couple of hours to attend to Murray. I wish with all my heart I had the distractions, though.
Family and friends help. So does work. And certainly things are solid on the work front. Unrelated to Murray’s passing, but I did step away from my Executive Producer position at Earplay to take on a role as In-House Developer for Onyx Path Publishing. (It actually happened back in September, but Murray’s death distracted me from the announcement.) Monarchies of Mau is continuing forward at a good pace, and with excellent writers stepping up to do wonderful work. New Pugmire projects are continuing to move forward, and I’ve picked up freelance work on projects like They Came From Beneath the Sea and Deviant: The Renegades. My work on Tunnels & Trolls Adventures went public a couple of months ago. I also just signed a contract for an unannounced project, and behind the scenes I’m helping out Phil Brucato in getting more Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition books out the door.
So, a lot of changes. Some of it is the nature of being a self-employed freelancer, and some of it is living in a new country where a part of your family is gone. But by necessity of describing my situation, I perhaps sound more maudlin than I am. Things hurt less. I’m not as numb as often. I get out more. Life is improving, slowly but surely.
I still miss him, but I need to get on with things.