Development Diary #17: The Great Migration

I did something big. And from the pictures, you can probably tell what I’m about to talk about.

My wife and I are pretty organized. I don’t have a picture of what this looked like when the truck was full, but, as expected, it slowly evolved into a mess.

My wife and I are pretty organized. I don’t have a picture of what this looked like when the truck was full, but, as expected, it slowly evolved into a mess.

For the past 13 years, I lived in Massachusetts. I moved to Boston when I was 18 years old for college and stayed in the state after I left school. But at the end of this July, I moved back to my home state of Georgia.

Why? Well, there are a lot of reasons. But I wanted to focus on the one you might find the most interesting.

I’m going all-in on storytelling. Over the past seven years, I’ve been honing my storytelling craft because I knew that I wanted to write the novels I dreamt of when I was a teenager. But instead of writing whatever came to mind and publishing it as fast as possible (and this is not a slight to any of the authors I know in the industry who take the leap earlier), I decided that I wanted to take my time and become the author I envisioned myself to be before I published. This meant dedicating myself to studying with excellent authors and editors. It meant spending hundreds of hours practicing in private. And it meant reading, studying, and analyzing the great storytellers who have come before me.

But the kinds of stories I wanted to tell—the kinds of worlds I wanted to build—they weren’t meant to be in the popular fiction genre. While this may have changed after the Game of Thrones adaptation, I knew (like my pursuits in music) that this meant that my dedication to following such a passion would mean making a meager living unless I got lucky.

I’m fine with that. I was willing to live in a van with several sweaty guys for weeks at a time when I toured as a metal musician.

But I think my family deserves better than that. And though this wasn’t the number one reason for my move to a different state, it was a factor. If I wanted to pursue my art and give my wife and son the lives I think they deserved, I had to lower my overhead costs, and it’s no secret that Massachusetts is an expensive state to live in.

This wasn’t an easy decision to make. Most of the people closest to me live in Massachusetts—friends and family I can’t replace. And this wasn’t just hard on me. I met my wife in Massachusetts. She also had to decide to leave everyone she knows and loves behind so we can realize our family’s greatest potential.

This is the start of a new journey for me and my family. This is the true beginning of the world of Continua. And I know you guys will enjoy the stories I have to tell with Emergent Realms and otherwise.

If you’ve been wondering why my usual twice a month book discussions haven’t been happening on schedule this month, this is the reason. Things are crazy at Wilbourne Manor as we put together our new home.

This is where I’ll be creating in my new home (1)

This is where I’ll be creating in my new home (1)

I’ll slowly transform this room into the office I’ve dreamed of (2)

I’ll slowly transform this room into the office I’ve dreamed of (2)

If you still haven’t had the chance to have a taste of what I’m working on, please go check out two my short stories here:

Have you made any big moves? I’d love to hear your story.