…How’s it going, 2000 man?
I used to run the 400m dash, so it’s no shock to end up back where I started after a long, excruciating sprint. I can say without hyperbole that my first lap around The New Gay ruined my life, or at least created the ideal circumstances for me to ruin it myself. I’ll grant that the experience helped me grow up and I was lucky to have the support of so many amazing people around the world — even now I stand on the shoulders of our old staff and readership.
Unfortunately I also learned about the difficulties of making a living online, the effects of prolonged longterm stress and the sad truth that not everything we love loves us back.
I compromised my health, my sanity, my relationships with my friends and family and now-husband, my innate trust that the world is a kind and decent place — nearly beyond repair— because of some idealistic notions I’d harbored at 23.
At 27, when I walked away, I believed that I had done more harm than good. And not just to myself. I’d made a few too many promises I couldn’t keep, gotten too many others caught up in a dream I no longer believed in, created monsters in my legacy. I woke up one morning like Roland Deschain, brandishing rusty guns around a world that had moved on without me. So I moved on too.
Someday I’ll tell you how that went.
Now at 31 I’ve got something like a life again. I’m blessed with a great husband, an amazing group of friends, a life no longer dominated by crippling depression and anxiety. What I still don’t have is a full-time job, and am finding that all networking and no creative platform make Zack a dull boy. So like a frequent masturbator with sandpaper palms, I’m opening old wounds with grim hope that the pleasure outweighs the pain.
I’ll be starting out small and solo — our downfall before was expanding faster than I could handle — though I’ll likely start soliciting additional contributors in the near future. Short term I’ll be debuting two creative works; One a serialized writing project that should debut in the next day or so, the other is a mixed media collaboration with a New York City artist slated to roll out in early February.
I come back with no set agenda or grand philosophy. I’m not the person I was in 2007 and the world I live in changes every day. I have no idea how long site this will be up or what it might become. All I know is that I have a few things to say these days. I suspect some of you do too.
The last four years have shattered my illusions about planning, so I don’t come bearing a map. My only ambition is to buckle up, take the wheel when it’s offered and hope the vehicle doesn’t fall apart before it gets where it is going. Let’s ride together and see where we end up.
Welcome back to solid ground, my friends.