Wednesday, December 6, 2017

How to Hobby When You Can't Hobby

There's a few things in common every hobbyist has; we all love to hobby, whether that's painting or gaming, and we all are short on time to do that. It's the constant struggle greater than Horus vs the Emperor, greater than Archaon vs Sigmar, greater even than Duncan vs a single thick coat of paint. So, what are some ways to overcome this obstacle?

There are many reasons why you might not be able to hobby. You may be away from your home too much, you may be too sick to pick up a brush, or a multitude of other reasons. Both painting and games require a fairly stable "workspace." Some place where you can set up your gaming table or all of your paints, which obviously is a bit of a space and time commitment. This is pretty much impossible to do while traveling or while on your lunch break at work. Luckily, there are plenty of other things you can do to scratch that hobby itch while you wait.

Black Library books are a great way to indulge in the hobby. Personally, I absolutely love the lore and pretty much devour it up, across AoS, Heresy, and 40k. I like to read everything the old fashioned way myself, on the printed page, but the shorter stories I can read on my phone or computer when I have the time, and those are quick enough to finish in one lunch break. The Advent Calendar stories are a perfect fit for this. With the recent addition to Audible this is even easier to fit in to your schedule. White Dwarf is fantastic for this too, and makes for even faster reading since you can just do a chunk at the time. This may have seemed pretty obvious for a lot of people out there, but I thought it deserved to be mentioned. Plus, there are plenty of people out there who don't indulge in the background lore as much as others, to whom I recommend, give it a shot!

An aspect of the hobby that's long been a staple is the storied art of list building. Playing around with different hypothetical army lists is something that everyone does. I can almost guarantee that for every army list that sees the tabletop there are a multitude of first drafts left in its wake. With Army Builder on the Community Site now and the Azyr App it's even easier for AoS. I can't tell you how many times I build random lists on Army Builder, testing out ideas and armies I don't even own yet. Power Levels in 40k makes this pretty quick and simple to do in the grim darkness of the far future now as well.

If you're suitably motivated and have the drive, fan projects are a really fun and engaging way to hobby. Depending on what you're doing you may just need your computer, or even just a pencil and a piece of paper. This could be some fan fiction, a mini game, additional rules, or whatever else you can think of. When I made the Unofficial Tomb Kings Battletome I spent plenty of hobby time away from the paints and gaming tables working on it, and it was super rewarding. Projects like this only enrich the hobby and are great things to share with the wider community, which brings us to the last, and largest aspect of the hobby.

The Warhammer community is a fantastic and welcoming place for any hobbyist out there. Whether it's on Twitter, Facebook, forums like TGA, WhatsApp, or just chatting with your friends, there's nothing quite like talking about and sharing Warhammer. The amount of time I spend talking about it, sharing pictures, and blogging about it (like right now) more than likely exceeds the amount of time I actually spend hobbying. I've met so many great people through the hobby, people who started out as Twitter handles and then became friends. I've also been inspired by countless hobby projects I've seen online. Half the time when I'm driving to work I'm listening to one of the Warhammer Podcasts out there like Facehammer, Bad Dice, Garagehammer, The Independent Characters or the many, many more there are. Seriously, it would take almost this whole article for me to list all of the podcasts I listen to and enjoy. Games Workshop is in on the game now too with the Warhammer Community site and Warhammer TV. The Twitch feed is something I could have only dreamed about back when I started in this hobby.

I was going to hyperlink out a bunch of the things I mentioned to make it easier for people to enjoy, but my website seems to be against me hyperlinking anything at the moment, so please, I encourage you to search all them out on your own, you won't be disappointed.

I'm sure there are many, many more ways to hobby without painting and gaming then I can think of at the moment. What are some of your favorite ways to "alternate" hobby? Are there some that aren't on the list above? Let me know in the comments below.

Until next time,

Tyler M.

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