Today I resigned my three remaining Pern-themed MUD wizbits and retired all of my remaining RP MUD characters, theme irrelevant. I may someday bring the characters back or create new characters, but I do not foresee this happening in even the remotest future. I am keeping my "characters" on social games such as TooMUSH (C'vin) and on the living room MUSHes hosted by various friends (Cat or C'vin, usually).
Note that all resignations and retirements were done in good faith and with no acrimony involved. I have not deleted or otherwise messed with any information on the DBs, and callicrates and I will continue hosting those games which reside on spundreams.net, theme or wizard status irrelevant. If some of the code I've left behind breaks and the admin(s) ask, I will happily log on and try to fix it. I still consider all of my former fellow wizards to be friends, and those who have LJs are still on my friends list.
For those wondering what lead to this, the answer is "a myriad of things". Probably the single defining event was Andy's getting a job in and our subsequent move to Albuquerque. We lost net access for a quite a while and I found myself happily occupied otherwise instead of in MUD withdrawal. We got access back just about when our beloved kitty, Thena, died, and I had absolutely no desire to RP for several months afterward. In the meantime I found myself drawn to PACA, a no-kill rescue organization from where we adopted our newest family member, Heidi. I was given a volunteer shirt several weeks before they finally had me fill out the official volunteer application, and the application only happened because they needed my indemnification on file. The two hours a day I spend volunteering are the prime hours for RP-MUSH events such as hatchings or major TPs.
Having a company build us a house from ground-up didn't help, either. Most of our time for the chunk of months between January and May were spent dealing with house stuff or visiting our lot/skeleton/house-in-progress. Since we closed in mid-May a lot of my time has been spent in unpacking and doing other house-related stuff; even my LJ entries have tapered off significantly.
The final event is more immediate; Andy and I are extremely worried about our second kitty, Gail. She recently developed a non-chronic but still life-threatening illness and things were very touch-and-go for a while. She stabilized a week or so ago, but is not improving. During her illness she lost over two pounds, none of which she's gained back. Her formerly sweet and affectionate behaviors have been replaced by an acute fear of Andy and me because we keep force-feeding her yucky bubble-gum-flavored goop. Her current walking pace is beyond slow, and she doesn't fight back when Heidi starts playing too roughly (as kittens are wont to do). If the appetite stimulant prescribed yesterday doesn't work, we may be looking at hospitalization and possibly even intubation. Needless to say, RPing or DB maintenance are way down on my list at this point.
I will continue updating the ATWL, mostly because the submissions are so few and far between that there is no significant time drain, aside from wading through the spam, and also because dragon names still fascinate me. We're still working on fine-tuning the spam filter so that it doesn't catch the occasional update, and I really need to wade through the 1000+ messages to find any submissions made recently. Once I do I plan on returning to updating within twelve hours of receiving the submissions unless they're mismarked as spam. Anyone wanting to help with filter fine-tuning, please let me know.
Thank you for taking the time to read this. If you have any questions, please comment or send me e-mail. I can be reached using my LJ username and the domain gmail.com.