Reflections In Hindsight

Grace in the Rearview Mirror…it's closer than it appears

  • Ephesians 4:29

    Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. (NIV)

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    • Weekly Winners
      Once again, we offer you a warm welcome to the Bookshelf of the Barn Door Book Loft. And before we announce our winners we’d like to offer a special thanks to these Christian authors who offered a sample of their writing to our faithful readers:Kelly Irvin who offered her Amish Romance The Bishop's Son. June Bliss who offered her Women’s Fiction Starfis […]
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      Once again, we offer you a warm welcome to the Bookshelf of the Barn Door Book Loft. And before we announce our winners we’d like to offer a special thanks to these Christian authors who offered a sample of their writing to our faithful readers:J.M. Downey who offered her Political Suspense Privileged. Ann Allen who offered her Non-fiction Out of the Darknes […]
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      Once again, we offer you a warm welcome to the Bookshelf of the Barn Door Book Loft. And before we announce our winners we’d like to offer a special thanks to these Christian authors who offered a sample of their writing to our faithful readers:Rick Barry who offered his Suspense:  The Methuselah Project. Candee Fick who offered her Contemporary Romance:  Ca […]
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    • Spotlight on "Anything for a Story" by Cynthia Hickey
      Stormi is delightful as the accident prone and bumbling wanna be detective. What she lacks in skill she makes up for in nosiness. Add in the sexy detective and a slightly nutty family and our lead character has her hands full.~Amazon reviewerAbout the book:Stormi Nelson, best-selling romance author, moved into her huge Victorian house in the private communit […]
    • The Winner of the January Clash
      Thanks to all of January’s wonderful authors! Here’s what readers had to say: All of these books look like so much fun! When I first saw The Volk Advent by Kristen Wilks, I was intrigued by the combination of a teen trying to escape murder charges and a pack of wolves, and I like to read historical fiction because I can experience other cultures.Cynthia Hick […]
    • Smashing Selections Brighten the New Year in This January Clash
      What an exciting 2016 kick-off for Clash of the Titles. Readers can choose from a teen novel, mystery, suspense/ thriller, love trilogy and an Amish novella collection of sweet romances. One of each sounds good. Peruse the selections, decide which to put at the top of this year's to-be-read list, scroll down, and vote for it on the *form below.Voting st […]
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      First, congratulations to Bonnie who won audio copies of Leah's Peace and Chasing Norie in the raffle. Next is to thank you all for your patience in my lack of new books in the last year and a half. I really needed the break but now I've got to get back on the horse and get some writing done. I'm getting people asking when the next book is com […]
    • Audio Versions Are Here!!!
      That's right. I'vebeen having my novels recorded in audio. There are three finished now and more in the works. Healing Love, Cottonwood Series #1 is available read by Lori Smith. She's working on Lord's Love now. Leah's Peace and Chasing Norie have been released read by Suzie Venable. Both these women are wonderful readers bringing t […]
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      Hi again,It's been a long time again since I posted. Haven't done a ton of writing but I did start a new novel or novelette or series of novelettes at the beginning of the month. November is National Novel Writing Month. The goal is to start a novel and write 50,000 words during the month. November isn't over yet but I know I'm not going […]
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      Stormi is delightful as the accident prone and bumbling wanna be detective. What she lacks in skill she makes up for in nosiness. Add in the sexy detective and a slightly nutty family and our lead character has her hands full.~Amazon reviewerAbout the book:Stormi Nelson, best-selling romance author, moved into her huge Victorian house in the private communit […]
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           A holiday story from inspirational historical author, Jewell Tweedt! The story, a novella titled Christmas Bells, is a stand alone e-book or available bundled in a print anthology with two other stories in Love's Christmas Past from Prism Book Group, November 2015.About Christmas Bells:Come hear the sounds of Christmas… Vivacious frontier widow Con […]
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    • The Color of the Season by Julianne MacLean
      NOTE:  Due to a serious need to cut back on my workload, this will be my last official book review on this blog.It doesn’t seem possible that the evening can get any worse for police officer Josh Wallace after he is dumped by the girlfriend he planned to propose to, but it does.  Josh and his partner are shot while chasing a carjacking suspect. While on the […]
    • Book Review: Swept Away (Trouble in texas Book 1) by Mary Connealy
      Ruthy MacNeil is rescued by Luke Stone after she nearly drowns fording a flooded river with a wagon train. Her step family doesn’t survive and she is finally free of their mistreatment. Luke surived the horrific ordeal as a prisoner of war in notorious Anderson prison during the civil war, only to learn that his father has been killed and the family ranch st […]
    • Book Review of Everything She Ever Wanted by Ann Rule
      When Pat Taylor wed Tom Allanson he had no way of knowing it would destroy his life in just a matter of weeksIn fact, Pat destroyed a lot of people’s lives. The attractive Southern belle was spoiled by her mother and she expected to live a lavish lifestyle at any cost. Nobody crosses Pat who was fascinated with Scarlett O’Hara. Pat could pour on the charm, b […]
  • BLOG NEWS

    Thank you for your encouragement and support for the past three years. We've had fun connecting with you and hope you've found useful material here on Reflections. And here's the but... Reflections In Hindsight is closing on December 21, 2012. Elaine and Sophie and I can be found over at http://authorculture.blogspot.com; April can be found at Clash of the Titles, http://www.clashofthetitles, http://www.aprilgardner.com and watch for news for more novels from her!; Janet is ever-present on the Internet with her very special words of wisdom and grace at http://www.janetperezeckles.com, and Luther--who knows where he'll show up next, but I'd watch my back if I were you... Book Reviews are always important, so I, Lisa, will continue to offer them through my blog, as well as those promotions for your new books or book launches, or your news.
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Confessions of a Video Game Addict

Posted by Ben Erlichman on October 14, 2010

What I’ve Learned

After having logged an estimated full year’s-worth of playing video games, time I could have spent developing my writing career, I’ve finally discovered what might serve as motivation for me to play fewer video games: my own laziness.

I hate working. I hate being responsible for making money, for putting in long hours at jobs I hate in order to pay the bills (though I’m actually enjoying working for my dad so far). I’d much rather play video games than work, but since that’s not an option, I work, then play video games when I get home.

I realized today that the only real way to break that cycle is to sell a novel, then to sell a few more after that. Once I’ve got at least three books published, I should be able to make my living off of writing and perhaps extra-writing activities (like speaking publicly, etc.). My goal is to be self-sufficient in my writing by the time I’m 30, which is about 5 years from now.

Video games hinder that goal. They keep me enslaved to two different things: more video games and my day job. The more video games I play, the less time I have to work on my novels, which means they take longer to finish. That means it takes longer to get them published, and, well, you get the idea. My video game addiction is literally keeping me from succeeding as an author, or at the very least, slowing it down considerably.

So if I’m really serious about my writing (and about not working), something’s gotta give. Soon.

And really, what do I have to lose?

Long, dark periods of isolation. Feeling like my life lacks purpose. Quick, easy entertainment.

That last one is just so darned strong, though, so hard to avoid.

I think that this series has helped me realize a few key things about video games and video game addictions. Video games aren’t bad, but devoting too much of your life to them can have detrimental side-effects. They can quickly seize a place that a friend of mine referred to as “the throne in your heart,” meaning they control you to some degree.

Parents, here’s my advice to you: don’t keep your kids from playing video games. It won’t work. They WILL go behind your back and play, either at home while you’re gone or at a friend’s house. Instead, provide them with so many other fun alternatives that it’s hard for them to want to play video games.

Here’s an example of a good compromise, one that works especially well with boys and young men (who are the main group of video gamers): over the summer, the guys in my youth group and their friends have gathered at our church on a Friday or a Saturday night at least once a month for what we call a “Night of Manly Mayhem.” It’s an event specifically designed for guys who want to do two key things: 1. play video games; and 2. beat each other up with foam swords.

In recent events, I’ve noticed that by and large, our attendees would rather swordfight outside and run around playing capture the flag (with the swords) than sit inside and play video games, which serve as a break when our bodies are worn out from the sword-fighting.

Parents, perhaps this is a good thing to explore with your gamers? Enable them to do things outside or that are active that seem like they’re video games in real life. Kid plays Madden on his Xbox? Have Kid learn to play football for real, even if it isn’t on a real team. Kid loves action/adventure games? Help Kid make some swords for him and his friends to play with. Shoot, they can even make armor out of cardboard so it’s safer, or Kid can just wear his football pads instead, if he does both.

My last message is to the gamers themselves, people just like me who need video games in their lives: you do need them, but you don’t need them as much as you think you do. What do you love about life? What really gets you going? What’s your favorite thing to do? If “playing video games” is your answer, that’s not sad or unfortunate, it just means you haven’t found anything else that compares.

It also probably means you haven’t looked very hard. My encouragement to you is to either get serious about your gaming and go pro (and one local tournament should give you an idea of how you stack up against others), or figure out what else you love to do and find a way to make money at that. That’s what I’m trying to do with my writing, and I know someday it will work out so that I can write full-time and still play video games too.

In the end, it’s your decision. Are you going to take one year out of every fifteen you live and spend it on video games like I did? Or will you use it for something else? I want to encourage you to keep looking for that “something else.” When you find it, you might just realize what you’ve been missing all along, just like I did.

*Feel free to check out the first three parts of this series on my personal blog, In the Fray.

2 Responses to “Confessions of a Video Game Addict”

  1. I hate to burst your bubble, but you can count how many novels I have out now. And the marketing takes more time than the writing.

  2. You had some great advice! Sorry-that didn’t get included above. Thanks for sharing.

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