Five Things on a Friday

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1) I have a number of things to take care of in the upcoming week, so I will be offline for much of that time. I have some posts that are scheduled to go up, but I’m going to be focusing on family and my WIP.

2) Often times, when I’m online, I don’t have access to all my online “stuff.” Sometimes I’m on Twitter but not email. Sometimes I’m online but not ready to reply to a comment on my LJ. Don’t ride me about that, please. Everyone controls their online time in the ways they think are best.

3) I like asparagus with my breakfast. I also need to create a new map for my WIP. These things are not related in any way.

4) I have figured out the “ending” of my book, and my word counts are going to start piling up again. Hopefully the time coming up this week will allow me to finish by the end of next month.

5) My son wanted to play Neverwinter Nights, so we started it up. (I “received” the anthology for Getmas, which means I bought it for myself and thanked my family for their thoughtfulness.) He played it for his entire computer time, and he really enjoyed it. Watching the LOTR movies has given him a love of dwarven fighters. After he finished, he asked me to take a turn. And omg, I really like it and want to be playing it again right now. I recognize this feeling and I fear it. Computer games can make me obsessive, so I’m hopeful that I can keep this thing at arm’s length.

Randomness for 1/5

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1) Best space photos of 2011.

2) The 2011 Wonky Awards.

3) New Zealand orcas attack great white sharks in the shallows, driving one onto the beach. Video.

4) Best of Literally Unbelievable for 2011. Part 1. Part 2.

5) A Doctor Who Timeline

6) Need a dedicated writing space? Live in Chicago. Check it out.

7) Building a Minecraft village IRL.

Randomness for 12/5

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1) 5 Logical Fallacies That Make You Wrong More Than You Think

2) Awkward Christmas Photos.

3) Before and after Photoshop. (Hit the Toggle button)

4) Scholasticism of the Seventies.

5) Texts from Bennett. Hoh. Lee. Crap. via @laura_hudson

6) Skyrim reimagined as a Saturday morning cartoon in the 80’s. Video

7) Worst Nativity Sets. So many bad choices here, it’s tough to single out just one. Naked trolls? Bacon and sausage? Mexican mermaids? Damn, that doesn’t even scratch the surface.

Five Things Make a Friday Post

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1) For folks who are still waiting for the Twenty Palace prequel, I have already self-published a number of short stories and novellas. None of them are in the 20P universe, but one is a historical fantasy set near Seattle in 1879, and the rest are second world fantasies. Some have never been published anywhere else: Kindle | Nook

2) Note for folks who visit that B&N page: I’m not the photographer, and I’ve never published scraped text through Hephaestus Books

3) Today is my tenth anniversary. The traditional gift is an ebook, right?

4) Last night we had our anniversary dinner. We ate steaks from Don and Joe’s, roast beets, green beans, and fingerling potatoes, a fancy cheese that I lost the label for and can’t ID right now, a delicious tiny lemon cheesecake from The Confectional, and a bottle of Beringer Cab from 1997 that we bought for our wedding. Thumbs up to all of it.

5) My son read a D&D comic and now wants to play the game. Do I have time to run a fantasy campaign? Shit to the no.

Quick note before I become productive:

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Skyrim releases today, of course, and I was really taken by this article about it: Things I Ate In Skyrim.

See, I buy games used and play them after they’ve been out a while. I never go online, preferring single-player exploration of the world. I always play on easy.

There have been times when I tried online games, usually through my buddy Jim’s account. He’s tried to get me hooked on Dark Age of Camelot (has it really been ten years?) and City of Heroes. The latter almost worked, but luckily my home life is antithetical to online gaming; if it wasn’t I’d never do anything else.

I’m not exactly Mr. Moderation here.

But I sometimes buy used games and put them in. Recently I played LEGENDARY, which was an amazingly stupid game. I bought because “Call of Duty with monsters instead of Nazis” but yikes.

Lately I’ve been playing FABLES: THE LOST CHAPTERS (I think that’s the title, anyway). It’s sort of interesting and sort of dull. When I’m not playing it, I want to be. When I am playing it, I keep thinking about how much time I’m wasting. And I’m annoyed at the traders who keep clustering around me while I fight bandits and hobbes, when they should be clearing the fuck out. I’m getting devil points with my area effect attacks, assholes! Back off!

Anyway, I’m mentally comparing the epic fantasy novels I’m reading with the “story” in the game, and trying to figure out what I can learn from it. Not much, apparently.

It’s after 4 am and my cough won’t let me sleep

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Attention Google users: There’s no medical advice in this post.

I’ve been sleeping on the couch for two nights because I don’t want to keep my wife awake, but tonight I can’t even fall asleep on my own.

What’s more, I find that the extended edition DVDs of Lord of the Rings don’t include the theatrical version. I have to pay extra for both? I’d have been happy to forgo a NZ travelogue and a docu on the movies’ sound design for the theatrical versions, you jerks.

Screw this. I’m just going to work on my new book and to hell with going to sleep. I can pull an all-nighter like I used to do in college, right? Right?

Here’s a sleep-deprived poll about the wip: Secret lake city of the unexpectedly intelligent alligator creatures, yes or no?

Randomness for 10/13

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1) What it’s like to work on a show in trouble.

2) Saveur magazine invites comix artists to write and draw their favorite recipes. Wonderful.

3) Cameos carved in Oreo cookies.

4) Cat vs. Hairdryer. Video.

5) Six big economic myths, debunked.

6) Super-rich superheroes (and villains) are the 1%!

7) TV/movie starships, to scale.

Apparently, I’m a “special snowflake”

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I just returned from NW Bookfest where, on a panel, author Mark Teppo referred to urban fantasy authors who make up their own monsters as “special snowflakes.”

Well guess what? I am special, because I think UF has to open itself beyond the same stock supernatural characters if it’s going to survive long term.

I’m also a snowflake, in that I melt when you touch me with your tongue.

I hope that’s clear.

Some stuff about today

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Went to the U-District early this morning (as my son reckons things, at least) to attend the live broadcast of local NPR-affiliate show “Weekday.” The first hour was an interview with actor and storyteller Stephen Tobolowski, of The Tobolowski Files. He talked a little about playing a pedophile principal on GLEE, being naked on CALIFORNICATION, and about his play “Two Idiots in Hollywood.” Great show.

The music was provided by “Awesome”. I suspect we’ll have one of their CDs on order by the time I return home, although their music wasn’t really to my tastes. Fun, but not for me.

After the show, my wife and son went home and I visited pals at their theater. They run Wing-It Productions, and if you’re in the Seattle area, you should go to one or two of their shows. They’re great.

Neither of my buddies could duck out for impromptu lunch, so I swung by Half-Price Books and picked up a bunch of old computer games I shouldn’t have bought, then ate lunch, then… Jesus, is it really so late?

I pretty much blew off the whole day, and I have NW Bookfest to attend tomorrow.

Crap. I’m supposed to be a writer, aren’t I? Writing things? Double crap.

Well, maybe I can accomplish something right now…