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May 02nd 2007

Thanks to all of you who have sent me birthday wishes, I really appreciate it and it made my day a lot better. It's still frightening that one year has actually dared to pass again, but here I am, older, and yet still the same ... old child.

As one would expect, the last few days I relaxed a bit and spent some time with Auriane. As of today I continue working on my projects. Antaran still needs a bit of polish, but I expect it to get the final cut next week. HQA Comic, you're next.

I've got a few recommendations for you. Here's the insanely addictive Puzzle Quest - Challenge of the Warlords for the DS. You can do everything in this game. Choose a character, select a job, level up your character, get a mount, level your mount, craft items, get more towns, build structures in towns, train skills, fight monsters - you name it. And the best part is that it's all based around this puzzle system. It's really hard to put this game down once it has sucked you in.

Next up: Movies. Check out Freedom Writers, No Man's Land and Pursuit of Happyness.

And now I've got some irrelevant gaming news for you.
- As I see it there's still no second patch out for S.T.A.L.K.E.R., so I'll wait a little longer before going back to that again.
- The PSP received a price drop and is now available for 169 bucks. I hope Nintendo drops the price of the DS Lite now, because I'd love to have one.
- I took a quick glance at the C&C3 map editor, but I couldn't get myself interested in doing a map.
- Final Fantasy 12 for PS2 was the first FF I haven't bought ever since the legendary purchase of FF7. A friend of mine told me FF12 was a masterpiece, but other sources tell me it's boring and way too similar to the MMORPG FF11, which still leaves a bitter aftertaste in my mouth. Also, FF12 plays in the world of Ivalice, and the last time I entered that world was through Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, and I can't really say that the aftertaste is a lot less bitter. And now FF12 Revenant Wings is coming out for the DS, throwing FF12 with Final Fantasy Tactics Advance into a pot, adding real-time strategy. I don't know if I want to eat that soup. They even re-used sprites of FFTA.

Oh well.

On a rather personal note, I've already written about my new schedule that allows me to work from Vienna every second week. Since parking my car in Vienna during weekdays costs way too much I'm kinda forced to go by train again. It's been a long time since I've traveled by train. It's a bit less convenient, but it actually saves me a lot of time. I won't just sit in my car for two hours staring at the pavement. I can actually be productive again or read something. Most plans for HQA were made in trains. Now that HQS is on the horizon, maybe that's actually a good thing. Another good thing would be to actually possess a laptop. I could finally make music while traveling. That would be sweet.

April 27th 2007

Muddasheep's Daydream Part 10

Whenever I'm out to buy something, there's always a section in the store that displays empty sketch blocks, copy paper, notebooks, small diaries, and I have to stop and look at them. Sometimes I even pick up one of the notebooks and skim through the empty pages. It inspires me. It fills me with pleasure to imagine what these pages could hold. I think I could spend hours looking and skimming through empty pages. In stores I always get the urge to buy a new notebook or a block, but then I tell myself I wouldn't really use it. But the idea of holding an empty block for inspiration is just so tempting. Last Christmas I got a Moleskine. It is a very beautiful notebook, and probably would be quite handy, but I don't dare writing anything in it. It's lying on my desk, and whenever I look at it I get this warm feeling, the drive to draw, to create. If I were to make notes in it, I would destroy the magic of it. In the company I work in coworkers are given hardcover notebooks in A4 format, but I refrain from using them. Whenever I see somebody opening his or her book and just writing meaningless letters on the empty pages, I feel it is a disgrace to the beautiful notebooks. They are meant to contain something worthy. Beautiful sketches of dreamland creatures and landscapes. Or perhaps be used as a journal.

A few years ago I realized I am not alone with these thoughts. On the internet I found a website of the german author Andreas Eschbach and he expressed the same feelings. I just wonder if there are even more people around with this - shall I say - addiction for empty paper.

As a side note, Andreas Eschbach's homepage helped me out a lot on how to develop my writing skills. I guess now would be a good time to thank you for that, Andreas.

April 26th 2007

The final entry of Antaran's Journal has been discovered.

April 25th 2007

A few rough days lie behind me, but now I think my situation will improve once again...

My boss agreed to change my job into a week-by-week schedule. I will now work one week as usual, then the next I will work from Vienna over the internet, which should make me feel a lot better and get my stress level down a bit. Of course, from Vienna it's a bit hard to make music, but I will hopefully get other stuff done. Or at least get some time to relax.

My spring allergies have almost died down, so I'll soon be able to sing again without sounding like a crow.

It's kind of weird at the moment since the last time I really worked on any of my projects was two weeks ago. I'm one month behind with my plans for 2007, and that's really bugging me.

I'm also turning 23 pretty soon. Twenty-three. It feels like just yesterday I was still 16. And I haven't visited a dentist in six years and I'm having nightmares about the things the dentist will do to my teeth after such a long time. But from what I hear, I'm definitely not alone with my dentistphobia.

Muddasheep's Daydream Part 9

Can I murder someone?

It's just one of these questions we all know and have gone through. If there were no consequences, what would you do? Would you kill people? Would you rape women? When I say that in every human is a person that is able to do anything, I heard a lot of protests recently. I say that I would definitely kill somebody, if only to observe what it feels like to take somebody else's life.

When I write stories and people get killed in these stories I try to imagine exactly what the scene looks like, and how it feels to, for example, get a dagger forced into your head from under your chin. I ask myself what it would feel like if you had an arrow shot in your chest, or for how long you could survive. I do research on what the metal does to your body, and how to cut off tongues but still being able to survive. Or how you experience a fall from a cliff and finally hitting the ground.

Not only that, I also imagine all day how I could possibly die or be severely injured any second. I walk up the stairs with a fork in my hand, and imagine tripping and the fork forcing itself right into my eye. I imagine losing fingers, I imagine falling into glass doors and slitting my veins open. I see myself in car crashes, getting pushed aside by trucks, or getting hit by a train when crossing tracks, and how it would feel to be split up into pieces. Probably there would be just a quick signal of pain and then you're gone. I imagine cutting through my fingers when cooking, I imagine being burnt in my face when holding a pot with hot water and tripping, the skin burnt away to the bone. And there's always the heart attack. Your heart stops beating. I had several occasions where my heart stopped beating for short amount of time, but those one-two seconds felt like hours. Similar to when the heart beats too fast for a split second. You feel like you're going to burst. And then there's always the insects that could overwhelm you, the asteroid that could hit any second, and the crumb that you suffocate from.

And at the end of the day I just wonder why I am still alive.

April 21st 2007

Thanks to the support of my friend Darrn the music collection known as "Remains" is now available on the new thing of the internet - Vuze. The benefit of this is that I can provide a torrent download for people who want to get Remains and it might get some bandwidth pressure off my server.

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