Quick Update

Just a quick update here.  Yes, I’m alive.  I was just away for the Easter weekend.  Things went well.  We ate some yummy food, visited with family, and drove a bunch of miles.  I missed you all, though 🙂

Last night I had my monthly writer’s group meeting.  They seemed to enjoy my Chapter 2 and had a bunch of suggestions that I believe will help me a lot.  Now I just need to go back and implement some of them and start on the Chapter 3 revisions.  I am so lucky to have found this writing group.  They see things in my writing I just can’t seem to see.

Anyhow, I will post something more substantial later.

Free Doctor Who Novel and Acknowledgements

So, ever since I got my Sony Reader (eBook reader) I have been lurking on the MobileRead Forums. For anyone who has an interest in electronic books, that’s a good place to hang out. Anyhow, the other day someone posted a link for a free Doctor Who novel titled Who Killed Kennedy, which according to the site is a much sought after book originally published in 1996. The author of the book has agreed to allow readers to download it.

In addition to that, the BBC has several Doctor Who books available for download as well.
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I have received a few awards in the past couple days that I thought warranted mention and acknowledgment. I would just like to say these type of things really do mean a great deal to me, partly because it means you enjoy what I’m doing here and partly because you like me, you really like me 🙂Taffiny awarded me with the Colors of Friendship award.Vesper gave me the Mwah! award.

Neil gave me the A Roar for Powerful Words Award.

Thank you three for thinking of me. Everyone else, if you have the chance check out their sites. All three are writing some great stuff. While you’re there, tell them I said hello 🙂

We’re Back

Well, I’m finally home from visiting everyone for Christmas. We departed on the 24th and just got home this evening (the 29th). It was tiring, but nice to see everyone. Thanks to everyone for the comments here. I will respond soon. I have been away from the computer for five days, which doesn’t seem like a long time until you do it.

All of my family was generous with gifts and I’m happy to say I received a bunch of books, which should keep me busy for a while. I got The Wee Free Men and Thud! by Terry Pratchett and Widdershins by Charles De Lint. I also received Diaries 1969-1979: The Python Years by Michael Palin of Monty Python.

The big gift I received was the Sony Reader (an e-Book reader). I love the feel of printed books and will probably never completely switch to electronic books. I wanted the Reader more for the free books out there such as the ones on Project Guterberg that are available as free downloads. I will write more about it when I have had some time with it.

My wife bought me the DVD to the movie Stardust and I can’t wait to watch that. It was such a good movie. I’m so glad she bought it for me.

The most fun was seeing my daughter with her presents.  We did the presents between my wife, my daughter, and I just this evening when we got home.

Anyhow, I’m back now, Christmas was great, and now I have to catch up with reading everything you all have written!

Merry Christmas

I just wanted to take a moment to wish you all a Merry Christmas and thank you all for stopping by here to read my words and more importantly to write some of your own. This little blog here really does thrive on comments, and it means a great deal to me that you all continue to add your thought on my musings.

Today is my last day at work until January 2nd. That is one of the perks of working for a University. I may not make as much money as I would in industry and I don’t get any monetary “Christmas bonus”, but at least I get a nice Christmas Break.

I will be spending most of my break visiting family, which translated means traveling. We are spending a night at my parent’s house, a couple nights at my wife’s Dad’s house, and a night at my Grandma’s house (the one that passed away recently, this may be our last time in that house) to visit that side of the family.

We should be home the 28th or 29th. My wife is running in a 5K race on the 31st so we definitely have to be home by then. I hope to have at least a couple “quiet” days at home after this.

I plan on writing a bunch of posts and scheduling them post throughout next week. You probably won’t notice a big difference here other than I may not reply to your comments right away. Please continue to post them, though. I’ll respond when I return.

I leave you with a funny YouTube video about Pachelber’s Canon and it’s pervasiveness in music of the past and today (trust me, it’s funnier than my lame description).

A Roar for Powerful Words

I’ve been awarded the A Roar For Powerful Words Award from The Shameless Lions Writing Circle. Thank you to Szelsofa and Hoodie for giving me this award. It really does mean a lot to me.

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Three things necessary to make writing good and powerful

  1. Take me somewhere else – When I read, I read to escape. I don’t mind stories about every day things, but I would much rather have a story take me to a new world, or a place on this world that I didn’t know existed, or on a grand adventure. These are the stories that get my attention, that make me feel alive.
  2. Make me laugh – I like to laugh.  It makes me feel good, whether it be on the radio, on television, or while I’m reading a book.  This goes with the whole take me someplace else thing.  If you are having a bad day, what better way to feel better than to laugh?  Don’t get me wrong, I like a good, well-written story.  It is just an added bonus if it makes me smile.
  3. The Good Guy Wins – Sometimes the world stinks. It just does. People do bad things to each other and they often get away with it (I’m looking at you Bush Administration). The last thing I want from my entertainment is for the wrong people to get their way as if often happens in the real world. I’m not saying everything has to be easy for the “good guy”. Maybe one of the “good guys” even dies. That is fine as long as the “good guy wins” in the end.

And now, I offer this award to:

  • Julie K. Rose – If you love words, you will love her blog. She offers up words regarding myth, folklore & symbolism daily on her blog. Every week she has a weekly podcast titled the Word-Hoard in which she defines a unique word and encourages listeners to use it in a sentence. Great fun. If you are into folklore and fantasy things, you should check out her blog.
  • Helen Parocha – She is a writer and a mom and if you read her blog you can see the influence of both. Her posts are often funny but also so well written, she makes me jealous! She is also an award winning author, winning the Children’s Book Council of Australia NSW’s Frustrated Writers’ Mentoring Competition in 2006. Stop on over there, you will like what you read.
  • BeAGoodDad – Mike’s blog deals with parenthood in general, but also with other issues such as Autism (his son has Autism). Most it’s about being a good dad, something I strive for every day.
  • Much of a muchness – Diane creates books, which I think is a writer’s dream hobby. She doesn’t just make books, though. She makes beautiful, lovely, books.
  • Others that have already been mentioned. There are others that have already been awarded elsewhere, so I won’t give the award to them again. Just so you know, though, I love the work you do on your blogs as well.

Break Out Bloggers – Sharing the Love

Diane awarded me with the Break Out Bloggers award today, which gives me the opportunity to post about the great upswing in activity I’ve been experiencing the past month or so and it also allows me to hopefully direct that attention elsewhere as well.

First of all, thank you all so much for coming here to read my various writings, to gawk at my crude drawings, or to just say hello. You all keep me going here. This here blog received a record 370 visits yesterday, which is amazing. My post, Frank – A Halloween Short Story, was read by 159 people! On my best months, this blog averages around 2000 visitors. This month I am near 6,000! Here’s a graph, just for the heck of it:

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I hope this trend continues.

I’d also like to point you to a couple blogs you all might not know about. Julie K. Rose has been talking NaNoWriMo in the past few days, which in addition to her Word-Hoard posts and Myths, folklore & symbolism posts make her blog one you should be reading.

Miss Jane has been writing some really good posts about writing craft, many of which you should read before NaNoWriMo. In addition to those, she has also offered to edit your story for free. I plan on taking her up on this and maybe you will too.

Finally, have you seen D L Ennis’s photographs? I could write an entire novel based on any one of them. Take a look at Picnic in the Mist. See what I mean?

These are just a few of the blogs who I think are Breaking Out. If I didn’t mention your blog, please don’t be offended. I enjoy yours as much as any of these. I’m relatively new to these and figured you might be as well.

Finally, don’t forget to check out my other post today, Fairy Tales; Their Origin and Meaning by John Thackray Bunce.

Again, thank you all for reading. Please continue.

Comment Weirdness

I just wanted to let you know I saw all of your comments in my previous entry, so thanks for all of those.  For some reason they aren’t showing on the site.  I’ll work that out when I get the chance.  Some of you posted twice, though, so I got extra comments.  Yay!

Monday and Finally Finished Harry Potter 7

I finished up the last Harry Potter book last night at midnight making me probably the last person in the world to read it. I’ll give you further thoughts on the book at another time, but my initial reaction is that I really enjoyed this book. Let’s put it this way, the book is over 700 pages long (larger than normal font, but still big) and it had me enthralled from the start. I only have time to read in bits, so I would read some, put the book down, and anticipate the next time I would be able to read. That is rare and the make of a great book.

I watched my daughter last night while my wife went jogging for the first time in a while. It has been tough for her to get time to run because of taking care of our little one. Also, my daughter cries any time her “Mamma” leaves the room (even for a moment), so I have to distract her when my wife leaves. Last night we watched her “Pup video” together.

Our daughter still is feeling a little under the weather and my wife and I got it too. Luckily my parents came over to help Saturday night. I’m finally feeling a little better today, which is nice.

Have you all heard about the new iPod Touch. It sounds like a pretty sweet device. I wrote about it Friday on Nerdzapper. I think the iPhone is way too expensive, but I think the new iPod is pretty fairly priced and would surely buy one if I had a spare $299 lying around. Thoughts?

Oh, and I did absolutely no writing 😦

Book Cover Meme

Thanks for all the well wishes, my daughter seem so be doing better today. I have, of course, contracted whatever she had. Hopefully it will only last for a few days. I’m feeling kinda out of it today, so I thought I’d try something different.

Cavan created an interesting Meme on his blog the other day, and I thought I’d join in. He called it A Book Meme and the rules are pretty simple. Here is a direct quote directly from his site:

Go to the advanced book search on Amazon, type your first name into the Title field, and post the most interesting/amusing cover that shows up.

Cavan claims there’s no way you’ll beat his book cover for weirdness. Sounds like a challenge to me.

Here’s the cover I found:

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What this cover lacks in weirdness, I think it makes up in authority. I mean this is a book about Paul dangit! It’s about me. OK, maybe it’s not about me, but it’s about an Apostle, and that should count for something. Also, I’m pretty sure Paul could take that cowboy on the cover of Cavan’s book. And if he couldn’t, I hear Paul hung out with a pretty tough gang of dudes.

Anyhow, give it a try and let me know what you come up with. Can you beat Cavan and I?

Plus, this is probably as close as I’ll ever be to having my name on the cover of a book.