Reflecting on 2016

Photo by Tiko Giorgadze

For the majority of the year, I have remained fairly silent. Obviously, the podcast has been ongoing, but, as a professional writer, this past year has been stagnant. I've toyed with ideas, I've started working on the ideas for the sequel to The Faithful. Despite all this time put into the ideas of the sequels, little to no writing has been put to the page.

There are many reasons for this, but perhaps the most obvious is my migraines.

Around the middle of June, I had a migraine that hit me, but, unlike so many others that I've had in the past 22 years, this one stayed with me. All in all, that one migraine lasted 72 days straight. I tried many things to break it, none of which worked. I lost count a lot of the time, then had to work my way back through the days to find it's origin. Even then I don't necessarily know the exact day, just the events surrounding it.

When it finally broke... I still had pain, just not as much. I was migraine-free for three weeks, then it hit again and hasn't really stopped. I've spent more than half a year with a constant migraine. To make a long story short, my doctors have abandoned me, my medication has been restricted, and, at the end of the day, my brain isn't wired properly to write when in constant pain.

That is to say, I have not stopped thinking about the novels. But it is hard to put words to page when they aren't exactly flowing. Nathan, of The Dubious Consumers Podcast, has tried to convince me to write the "migraine" novel, to display what my mind is like under this pressure. To give a different point of view, perhaps.

If 2017 is anything like 2016 has been, I may not have a choice if I want to keep writing.

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Justin D. Herd

Justin D. Herd is a purveyor of the weird and strange. He occasionally squawks at friends and family, but does so only under the cover of night. Okay, that's not true. He squawks in full daylight. Drinking games have been built around his peculiarities, but the truth of it is this: he is a loving husband, with two wonderful dem--children. One growls at things he likes, including pretty women. The other has started to learn hand-eye coordination. Neither had made it to the tender age of three. From there, things will only get more interesting. He spends most of his writing time either at a coffee shop or sitting at one of his many desks around his house. Any other place makes it nearly impossible for him to write. He uses horror movies and rock music to help get the juices flowing. His favorite authors are Jeremy Robert Johnson, Alan Campbell, Terry Pratchett, Justin Cronin, and Patrick Rothfuss. He consumes most of his books through audiobooks, but still loves his personal library and getting lost in the printed word.