Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Limited Edition

I've got the final edit of Spirit of Bear Valley uploaded to Lulu. I'm only going to leave it there for a short period. So, if you want to buy a copy in print, this is your chance! I've priced it as low as I could ($8.99) so it's affordable for all.

If you do order, be sure to select USPS Media Mail as the delivery method. It's the cheapest way to go.

Here's the link one more time:

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Carl Sagan's Passing - 10th Anniversary

We all owe so much to Carl Sagan, especially those of us without a degree in the sciences. He explained the cosmos to us in a way we can understand.

Today marks the tenth anniversary of Carl's death. Let us all pause for a moment of silence for the man who made "billions and billions" a standard phrase. Go here for more info:

Carl Sagan Memorial Blog-a-thon

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Spirit of Bear Valley offered to print the NaNoWriMo books for folks who won (e.g., managed to hash out 50K words), so I thought I'd take them up on the offer. Since I went to a bunch of trouble to format it, pick out a cover, and all that other stuff, I thought why not put it up for sale to the public? So I did. Hanging my head in shame at self publishing a book, I'll nevertheless try to get somebody/anybody to buy it.

If you happen to take a peek, you could also give it a wonderful rating so maybe somebody will buy a copy.
Spirit of Bear Valley Link

Monday, December 18, 2006

Margaret McGee

Margaret is a writer friend of mine and she just put up a website of her works, so I thought I should promote it. Margaret and I worked together a million years ago as tech writers. She's a superb writer and turned to writing stories and articles about her faith. Good for her! Still, I remember her fondly for her edits on a little story of mine about Big Foot that eventually was published by Bewildering Stories.

Here's Margaret's website:

You would do well to check it out. She's a lovely lady and a fine writer. That we've maintained contact after all these years says a lot. I appreciate her and I'm sure you'll appreciate her as well, especially if you are of the Christian faith. Now, I'm not, but I can still appreciate Margaret's writing and her strength.

Makin' Out Like Bandits

We moved into a 55+ manufactured home park about 1-1/2 years ago. We found out last Christmas they have a contest for best lights display. My hubby, not to be found wanting, put up lights for a week and we won 3rd Place, which is a $50 prize. At the Christmas potluck, we also won a ticket draw for another $15. My parents, who also live in the park, also drew a $15 prize. It was a profitable night at the old folks' home.

So, here's a pic of the lights. Not quite all are visible because I can only backup so far across the street to get the shot.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

A Time To. . . Now Available

Despite being the 'fairer' sex, women have long demonstrated that they possess great strength. They instinctively know there is a time for everything and they face it with Strength, dignity and determination. Here you will not find damsels in distress or shrinking violets. Instead, you will meet women who wield strength in war and compassion in the face of hatred. Women who know there is A Time To... Laugh and Cry Kill and Heal And even a Time to Die.

Now Available at Lulu

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Will Riley

Check out Will's latest story in the Angler, titled Curse of the Apple Pie

Will is an absolutely brilliant writer and I wish he'd write more. He's funny, poignant, and versatile.

Here are a couple more of Will's stories. I think they're well worth reading. I'm blogging them here because the man is so shy, you can hardly find him tooting his own horn. That's a shame because I think he could definitely become a very famous short story writer.

A Man Walks into a Bar - Bewildering Stories
Too Late Now - Fifth Story Review (I also have a story in this issue)
Bernard, A Special Case - Diddledog

That's all I could find for now. Will really should get a list together somewhere so that everybody can enjoy his stories.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Tuckersville USA

A buddy of mine, Gene, challenged a bunch of us to a round-robin write-a-novel (novella, short story, whatever). He's writing the first segment to give us a starting point and then we'll round-robin scenes/chapters in order. This sounds like fun or total chaos. We'll find out which in the next few weeks.

Just a nice quiet town where people smiled at each other, waved, and lived harmoniously day in and day out. Or did they? Was there more to the story than what a passerby might see when they stopped here to rest? And what about those folks who lived in the hollow? Maybe, just maybe, the town wasn’t as quiet as it seemed to be.

If you'd like to follow the progress, here's the website Gene set up.

Tuckersville USA

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Holiday Songs

My buddy Gene tagged me to post my five favorite holiday songs and to tag other folks to do the same. Here's my list:

Oh Holy Night
We Wish You a Merry Christmas
Silver Bells
The Little Drummer Boy (pah rum pah rum pum)
What Child is This

Some of my selections have a religious theme, but I really don't think Christmas has anything to do with a specific religion. Yeah, yeah. I know that it's supposed to be Christ's birthday, but historically that's actually in March or April. The majority religion of the Dark Ages didn't want to impinge on the Easter celebration, so the pagan mid-winter festivals were usurped by monks trying to convert the masses in northern Europe. The continuance of the evergreen tree and a mid-winter feast allowed the pagans to more easily buy into this new religion being peddled.

Here's a nice write-up on mid-winter celebrations.

Nevertheless, some really nice music has come out of the deal.

Happy Holidays to you for whatever you wish to celebrate: Christmas, Hannukah, Saturnalia, etc.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Nice to Have Friends

A friend of mine through various crit groups started his blog recently. He writes lovely essays on life in general. Yeah, lots of people do that, but he does it very well.

But, he also went the extra mile for me and put a nice plug for my Cadida book on his blog, complete with the cover art.

Go read Gene's essays (below the lovely plug for Cadida). I think you'll enjoy them.

Shameless Plug on Gene's Blog

Here's a link to the top of Gene's Blog.

I'm also happy to report that beta blogger has given back its post editing capabilities. Things are looking up!

Monday, December 04, 2006

Making Things Worse - Part 2

I retrieved my website, no thanks to Clearwire's non-help. I think they've grown too fast since I did receive good help when I first got the receiver. Clearwire isn't DSL and it isn't cable and it isn't a satellite. On the whole, I'm happy with the service once I found the right place in the house to put the receiver. It's sitting on top of a six-foot bookshelf and pointing generally southeast. It's this flat thing with five lights on top. The number of lit lights shows signal strength. The signal comes from a tower, which I believe is also a cellphone tower. The receiver is connected to my wireless router, and our computers pick up the signal via the router.

But, back to how I solved the problem. After I received another note from Clearwire to call them to "troubleshoot" the problem, I went back into my account and started the setup of another webpage. Apparently, the connection was broken somehow or other and when I started the setup process, the system located all my webpages. Everything is intact. Thank goodness! I'd hate to have redone the whole thing.

The "troubleshooting" the email referred to was obviously just putting me through the re-setup steps that I did on my own. Now, why couldn't they have just said "do the setup again and your webpages are most likely still around." Now, my heart does go out to the other people with their clearwire website which no longer work and they don't even know it. On the other hand, if they don't update their site, then I guess it doesn't matter much.

As for beta blogger, it still does not have the features to do fun stuff with the post. No HTML editing, no picture download, no hyperlink setup. Maybe they'll get it straightened out before they decide they aren't in beta anymore.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Making Things Worse

So, I switched to the Googlized version of blogger, downloaded IE7, and lovingly updated my webpage, MySpace page, Author's Den, etc.

IE7 seems to not allow any cookies set so I have to enter my (various) passwords everywhere new. This is highly annoying. I keep messing with the security settings so the Remember Me checkbox actually remembers me.

The new blogger from Google doesn't seem to be any kind of improvement. But, guess what? You can't go home again.

Clearwire, my ISP, seems to have lost my webpage. I put in a problem report asking if it was just my page or was there a problem with their web server. I got a note back from them that said "We cannot troubleshoot this type of problem." Plus a bunch of other stuff about calling their customer service lines. That would be fine except this is what will happen:
Me: My webpage seems to have disappeared and I can't log into the WebsiteOS to check it.
Them: Is your computer plugged in?
Me: Obviously. I wish you'd just take a look and see if my webpage is anywhere on the server.
Them: Have you installed any new hardware lately?
Me: No, that's not the problem.
Them: ((( other stupid comments which waste their time and mine until I can convince them to simply check )))

Here's the fun part. I googled and found some other folks' websites on the same server as mine. Many of those websites are also MIA. So, it's not just my site. The question comes to mind: Why don't they know their server is eating people's websites? Why do they fail to mention to their customers that they've bombed bigtime and are working on the problem?

So, that's my gripe for today.

Please check my existing websites for information on my writings. In particular, go buy my new book, "Cadida and the Djinn," from Genre Mall.

I would have made that a pretty link, but google's version of blogger doesn't want to supply any of the nice features like adding pictures, building links, making text colored. So, screw them, too.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

A Fun Quote from a Reviewer

The Lorelei Signal anthology, A TIME TO... is coming together and I'll be posting a link for it soon, but I thought I'd share a fun quote from one of the reviewers the editor passed on:

Kim Headlee - author of Dawnflight, said

"This line alone is worth the price of the whole antho!" about this line from Marva's Dasef's story "Chilpequin 22 Miles" -

"Yeah, my cousins both play for the Seahawks. I've got an aunt who's a linebacker for the Chicago Bears."

As you might notice, this is a lighthearted story and I hope you'd enjoy reading it along with the rest of the stories and poems in the anthology.