Unplugged: Inspiration From Some of the Best Things in Life

I love technology just as much as the next gerk and need, but I also have the taste of adventure and outdoors. I’d like to share a story about drawing inspiration from areas in my life other than from gaming. I am a member of a Boy Scout troop in my hometown in Washington. I am finishing up my Eagle rank, and as a part of a High Adventures group, we planned a trip to what is ranked as one of the top 10 lakes in the world.

After a year of planning, I took a well enjoyed hiatus from the connected electronic world for ~9 days. Taking around 200 pounds of food for 8 days and 7 nights, we headed for Bowron Lakes in northern British Columbia at 6:30 a.m. Monday the 9th. After 12 hours of driving, we finally made it to the park to set up camp and sleep.

The following morning, we had a prep meeting with the rangers, and then we rigged up our 6 tandem sea kayaks and 1 single kayak to head to the water. We portaged from the parking lot to the first lake, something that will go down in infamy because of the horrid trail we crossed.

I cannot describe everything I saw. It truly is something one must experience for oneself. With little to no rain, clear skies, and calm water —  I had plenty of time to bask in the glory of the world’s creation.

In a pseudo edition of Lore Life Lessons, I will share what I find in life (beyond gaming) to give me my joy.

Take Motivation Where You Can

It’s easy to get bogged down in life, we’ve all had those days. We either have just enormous amounts of stress and work, or we have persecution and ridicule from the peanut gallery that just gets to our core. Society even contributes (at least in the U.S.). If you’re not pretty, or athletic, you’re not good enough. If you spend your time on a computer for more than 2 hours, not for work, you’re an outcast of society.

In high school, I’ve been constantly picked on, bullied, and even threatened because I bring my laptop for everything and I am a flamboyant geek. I’ve even been mocked as a nerd for writing a book, and having no life because it’s all I do.

Many have similar experiences, but there’s one thing we all say — ignore it, and keep doing what you’re passionate about. They don’t matter. Keep close to your friends and family, they will always be supportive of your choices.

I am fanatical about writing, clearly by my want to get published. I’ve mentioned before that procrastination finds its grip upon me, but also, so does lack of motivation. If I have no one willing to help me edit it, read it, or give feedback, I have little incentive but to pass the time.

After Bowron, I have full will power again. There is no way I can re-create the beauty I saw in reality, but even in my little reality in writing, I can perhaps try. The experiences I had while paddling are able to feed into my story, and better it. Perhaps similar stories are part of the reason that so many MMOs seem to lack their usual player bases in the summer.

Does anyone else find joy in unplugging sometimes? What are your thoughts on inspiration beyond technology, and what are your go-to obsessions that motivate you to keep at it?

For those who would enjoy seeing all the photos from the trip, you can find them here.


  1. Mordil, you actually have trouble finding someone to beta for you? Geez, where were you 5 years ago, I had 20 people lined up to read whatever I sent their way. I was in the same boat you were, trying to find readers, the will to write, finding a publisher.

    I gave up on finding a big house publisher since they all want to talk to an agent first.

    Best advice I can give to get published is look at the vanity presses such as Lulu or Trafford. Both do great work and both are the lowest costing presses out there. Drawback is you have to do all the marketting, but you have a crowd here you can shamelessly self-plug to.

    Took me 6 months to write my manuscript, 6 years to edit it until I was satisfied, and then a full year to grow the backbone to put it out there.

    And if no one is willing to read/critique your work, find a literary forum group on-line and post a chapter. Or better yet, mail a copy to yourself and then start soliciting on-line for beta readers.

    Authors have to start somewhere and taking a chance is the first step.

    (aka The MOUSE – author of King of the Rose)

    – see how easy shameless plugs can be? ^_^

  2. 5 years ago…. hmmm….

    I was 12, barely moving to a new town, and extremely naive. That sounds about right.

    Though, that was around when I first found my niche for writing fantasy and wrote my first chapter for a book I was considering.

    Needless to say, I lost all of that excellent writing (that my 6th grade English teacher handed to high school honors English teachers who thought it was amazing). Currently, what I’m writing is an evolved, improved, basis off of what I wrote in 6th grade.

  3. The teacher who took your work to pass it to a high school teacher… man, that’s eerily familiar to one of my High School teachers who decided to plagerize my work. Needless to say I got her fired for it.

    And you’re 17… goddess, I feel old now -_-

    Good writing, thankfully, has no age. The more you work at it, tweak it, put it on a shelf to revisit at a later date, the better the work becomes. Why? Our minds are continuously evolving in terms of imagination and things experienced. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if your camping trek percolated some interesting stories and / or plots to add to an existing work or something brand new. Even something as mundane as a bus ride can spark something. This is how most of our entertainment (movies, TV, books, games) are born.

    A fellow author once told me: “Anyone can have a good idea, but it takes a really creative mind to draw others into that idea.”

    I hope to someday see your works in a bookstore or on-line (no lack of places to post stories on the Web). Master blogger like you is no doubt in possession of a really creative mind.

  4. You’ve got it: I have some ideas from what I saw / happened on the trip that I want to use in my story.

    I appreciate all the words you’ve said, and I plan on having all my writings — blog posts from here, short stories (the writing contest one, and more that I have thought up), plus “final” drafts of the chapters of my book on this site:

    Lost Scrolls of Natov

    It’s not much, but it still is a decent idea to centralize my writings at one place for those who enjoy reading it, and quick reference for employers (possibly).

    If you, or anyone, would like to see some of my writings before I get to posting them there, shoot me an email at 2nd.Lt.harris@gmail.com, or an @Laeltis message on twitter.

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