Snow from a Distant Sky is now Available

Blog post No. 491

20220414_161437_hdrI may be milking it a little by now, but this is a short post to announce the official release of Snow from a Distant Sky. In case you don’t already know, it’s the fifth book in The Synthetic Albatross Novella Series that started with The Thinking Machine in 2018. As I’ve mentioned a number of times, the series is now on hold for the foreseeable future. One of the main reasons I wrote the series was to have new books each year for the annual events I was attending. Now that I have Broadcast Wasteland, Break/Interrupt, and Snow in my pocket for when I do go back to events (you can read last week’s post to know why I’m not taking part, yet) I think my time is better spent working on some novels. Continue reading “Snow from a Distant Sky is now Available”

The Social Me

Blog Post No. 481

southpark_facebook_gifWelcome to February of 2022. Right now I’m trying to figure out what this blog will look like for the year after having one of the best (in terms of views and visitors) years in the last decade. It’s hard to not take stock of the first month’s numbers, compare them to last year’s, and make predictions. If those numbers are any indication (and they probably aren’t) I won’t be breaking any records. But that’s okay. Not going out for readings or other events is strange and I’m sure it’s limiting my audience growth, but so is having as limited an internet presence as I currently have. I’m not a big fan of social media (though I check it enough). I hate making posts that feel empty. I believe in the concept of paying for a person’s attention with either information or entertainment.

Continue reading “The Social Me”

Cold Writing in Hot Weather

Blog Post No. 458

hgj5g8dn6h711It’s hot outside. Like, seriously hot. Some people have no idea what the part of Canada where I live is like. The area used to be a swamp. In the summers we get heat waves that may look quaint to people who live in more southern climates, but our heat is wet. It sticks to you. When we reach 32 degrees Celsius (about 80 Fahrenheit) it feels like 40 degrees with the humidity (104 F). Again, that doesn’t look like much to someone who sees 120 F in Arizona, but the humidity is a killer. Continue reading “Cold Writing in Hot Weather”

Starting the Fifth Novella

Blog Post No. 454

ek9ec_bxsainecfIt’s August (already, somehow) and for better or worse, I’ve put the Invasion Novel aside to start the fifth novella, Snow from a Distant Sky. I had a really good plan for July that would result in me getting the third and fourth draft of the novel done and (ideally) put me in a good position to have some folks get their first look at the book. That didn’t happen. Between going back to the day job and the earwig invasion, I only managed to get the third draft done. I think I managed to make it a good one, though. I didn’t want to rush (because I would miss a bunch and it would have been a waste of time and effort) but there is still a long way to go. It’s definitely not ready for people to see. Continue reading “Starting the Fifth Novella”

Surprise, Surprise

Blog Post No. 438

20210413_135426Surprisingly, the sample copies of my new novella, Break/Interrupt, came in earlier than expected. Not surprisingly, there was a mistake and I had to pay to upload a new file in order to fix it. The books came in last week, but I spent the weekend searching for coupon codes online in hopes of avoiding the steep cost of making the fix. It was just a little thing. The text on the back cover was off centre. Some of the issue is from the wildly varying printing and cutting tolerances that comes from print-on-demand books. Also, I was relying on the previous book’s cover as reference and since this book is significantly larger, the spacing was off. Continue reading “Surprise, Surprise”

Sharpening the Knife

Blog Post No. 419

tenorWhile Christian has been going over the latest draft of Break/Interrupt, I’ve been working on the ebook (still). I’ve made some good progress, but the deeper I dig, the more mistakes I find in my current attempt. It’s gotten to the point where I have a single major issue remaining and I’m going to (hopefully) fix it by redoing the whole thing with new encoding. That means creating a new file and moving all the code over, then reviewing my code looking for places where I can replace old tags with new one. (Tag being the wrapper for the content i.e. <p class=”first”>content</P> for a paragraph). It’s more complex than that, but really not by much. Continue reading “Sharpening the Knife”

Coding for ebooks

Blog Post No. 418

giphy-2One thing to get out of the way right off the bat. I am not a coder and my meager accomplishment would likely insult the sensibilities of a real coder at a single glance. With that in mind and the overwhelming amount of help I’ve gotten from Arvin (my bad code is in no way representative of the help he provided but is an example of my own shortcomings) I am on the cusp of finally having the epub version of The Thinking Machine finished. There is still the Kindle version to do, but I hope that it’s as easy as the tutorials make it seem and I can just press a couple of extra buttons in the program I’m using and it will be spat out the other side. Continue reading “Coding for ebooks”

Gaming with Friends

Blog Post No. 417

baby-safety-manual-23Last week I finished off the third draft of Break/Interrupt and (like passing off a mewling baby) handed it over to Christian for review. There is still a lot of editing left to do, but other than more potential cuts, the story is pretty well set. With the novella out of my hands, I am trying to be productive in other ways without diving into another project that will have to be put on hold when I get the edit back. At the top of the list is coming up with some good ideas for the cover so that Glen Hawkes can turn my scribbles into something cool. Continue reading “Gaming with Friends”

Virtual Launch – Tomorrow

Blog Post No. 404

117683921_337019071017620_2351180101954076933_nI messed up. I was so surprised by the news last week that I wrote a post about not going back to the Day Job for the rest of the year when I should have made a post about the virtual launch that Adventure Worlds Press is doing tomorrow (Friday August 14th). Since we released three books this year and we haven’t been able to do traditional launches we decided to put together something online. It’s strange to think that the book I’m promoting, Broadcast Wasteland, came out in April, but since time has lost all meaning in the pandemic, I’m sure it’s fine that I’m launching it now. Continue reading “Virtual Launch – Tomorrow”

Called Off

Blog Post No. 403

19d30fb6d40181810dde3dacbc4f48f3As you probably know, I’ve been home from the Day Job since early March. There are a lot of people in similar situations, and to be honest, it hasn’t been too bad for me. With Employment Insurance and the Emergency Benefits, I’m not really losing much money. (Some months may have even been better than what I sometimes get since the Day Job fluctuates so much). With the various stages of opening (for better or worse) across the province where I live, some folks have been going back to work, and many more are scheduled to when my area hits the third stage and schools open. As for me, I’ve been officially informed that my Day Job won’t be reopening until 2021. Continue reading “Called Off”