Tuesday, 31 December 2013

A New Year Beckons

Another year is coming to a close and a new one rises from the ashes. Or some other poetic way to say:

Happy New Year!

I'm looking forward to 2014, mainly so I don't dwell too much on the last year. Despite best intentions I don't feel I achieved much and just kind of coasted through, making me more determined to make 2014 the year I do "stuff". I don't yet know what that "stuff" will be, but I'm betting it will be fantastic. I love "stuff".

Number one on my to-do list is to once again attempt the dreaded LIFE PLAN (read that in deep booming tones of Christopher Lee for full effect). I've dabbled with LIFE PLANS before but I always chicken out and create a year plan or a three year plan, like some bloody politician. This time though I'm going to sit down and have a serious conversation with myself, one that hopefully won't turn into those talks you have with career advisers in school:

"So what do you want to do with your life?"
"...No idea. Something that isn't boring."
"Okay... well what do you like?"
"Films, books, games, stories, art... you know, fun stuff."
"Well you can't make a career out of any of that - how about *insert the last thing you ever wanted to do*? It's rewarding and offers some great opportunities!"

The second point on my to-do list is to post on this blog more, which will no doubt be featured in the LIFE PLAN under the writing header. I also want to fit more drawing, learning new things and travelling, as well as improving my fitness and all that other stuff that's really rewarding but is a real butt-ache to actually do.

So here's to 2014: may it bring fortune and glory to you all. And to finish off, here are some trailers of films I'm looking forward to in the coming year. Happy Hogmany!

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Videogames and Me

Lots of people like to give games a bad rep. They're blamed for mass shootings, knife crime, animal cruelty and even turning someone into a sex addict. Despite the fact that no one has ever been able to identify a definitive causal relationship between games and violent behaviour, the stereotype continues. Combine this with the general representation of games and gamers to be less than positive and you can imagine how frustrating it gets to be a gamer after a while. It was refreshing to see a TV programme on Channel 4 this weekend called "Video Games Changed the World", which went through 25 of the key games through history, along with profiling issues and topics they and other games have raised through the years. So rare is a positive portrayal of games and gamers I could even ignore Charlie Brooker's more annoying moments. I don't think my hobby gets enough positivity around it, and you hardly ever hear about how games help people, or the good they can do. So here's my attempt to rectify that balance a little with a personal story of how games have helped me and continue to help me on a daily basis.