Archive for October, 2008

Oct 31 2008

NaNoWriMo kicks off

Published by under Writing

As I write this, NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month, is kicking off as the world turns under the midnight line. It will be November first here in Colorado by the time this gets posted. NaNoWriMo’s web site will do a better job of explaining it than I want to take the space here to, but essentially it’s the opportunity to get together virtually, and in many cases in real life, to try and crank out fifty thousand words of fiction in a month. There’s a lot of cameraderie and you can learn a lot just from the effort. Nobody expects the result to be of finished quality, that’s what editing and revision and rewrites are for, and they come later.

I’m taking the opportunity to get a big chunk, at least, of my Apollo 18 (working title) done. It’s a technothriller about a secret mission to the Moon shortly after Apollo 17, to investigate a secret Soviet landing (the N-1 explosion was faked), in parallel with Project Jennifer (the attempt to recover a sunken Soviet nuclear submarine). Yes, figuring out how to stack and launch a Saturn V in secret a bit of a trick.

I see from the clock in the corner of my screen that it’s just ticked over to 00:00. Time to post this and fire up the word processor. If anyone’s interested I may post snippets as I go. We’ll see.

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Oct 27 2008

Epsilon Eridani has two asteroid belts.

Published by under T-Space

NASA announced today that observations from the Spitzer Space Telescope lead them to believe that the star Epsilon Eridani (about ten light years from Earth, and currently the closest star to ours known to have planets) has two asteroid belts. There’s a somewhat expanded story at Science Daily.

This has no immediate effect on my T-Space stories (dodged a bullet there, I was just commenting yesterday about how astronomical discoveries sometimes render stories obsolete) but does give me a few ideas, and has stimulated me to start adding to the T-Space pages. The first is of course on Epsilon Eridani.

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Oct 26 2008

New T-Space page

Published by under T-Space

I’m back from MileHiCon. It was a lot of fun, I met a lot of old friends and made some new ones, and was on several panels. I’m exhausted.

However, I did want to point out the new T-Space page that’s up, giving a bit more detail of the background of the T-Space series of stories (the Jason Curtis stories, The Venaticorum Archive, and others in progress). As time goes on I’ll be adding more here, both for those of you who are interested and to help keep my notes on the place organized 😉 I don’t have comments turned on for that page yet, but feel to leave comments to this post.

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Oct 22 2008

Progress on the site upgrades

Published by under Uncategorized

I finally figured out how to do hierarchical pages (pages that link to other pages rather than posts, there are important differences in how they’re handled by this software), and the rest of the essays from the old site are now up. There’s still a little bit of content from the old place to move over, but the end is in sight. It helps to know what you’re doing.

Most of the dates on the old essays are wrong, they’re dated as of when I loaded them into the new system. I may go back and change that at some point.

Note: Because in some cases I cut’n’pasted HTML from the old site, there may be some broken links. I’ve fixed all the ones I’ve found so far, but I may well have missed some. Please report broken links using the comment mechanism. Thanks.

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Oct 20 2008

Oops! Or, how come this never happened to McGyver?

Published by under Uncategorized

I don’t know how many times I’ve told my kids to be careful with knives, and certainly I know better. So what do I do when trying to remove a pressed-in fitting from the end of a hose? Try to cut the hose with my Swiss army knife, is what, holding things at exactly the wrong angle. Of course, the knife slipped.

Fortunately I manged to “only” impale/slice the index finger of my left hand, over the first joint. I think my fingerbone stopped the blade from going any deeper. It was bleeding quite a bit, so I went to the doctor’s office. It wasn’t until they started testing how well I could straighten my finger against a force that the more subtle implications sunk in; I could have severed the tendon that runs up the back of the finger to extend it — and I’d be re-learning how to type about now. As it was they put four stitches in it to keep the wound closed. That made a great graphic lesson for my kids: “see what happens if you’re not careful when using a knife.”

And I think I’ll leave the bloodstain on the tip of the knifeblade as a reminder to me not to be so stupid.

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Oct 18 2008

Going live!

Published by under Uncategorized

Okay, here it is, the new content management system for this website. You can now post comments to individual postings. No self-registration yet, but that’s coming soon, I want to see how this server stands up to the load first.

Not quite all the content from the old site is transferred yet but it should be within the next couple of days. I also want to do a bit of fine tuning to the page layout and maybe shift a few things to static pages.

Comments welcome, let me know what you think.

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Oct 18 2008

MileHiCon 40

Published by under Uncategorized

The 40th annual Denver regional SF/F/etc con, MileHiCon, is coming up next weekend, and it promises to be a blast. I’m scheduled for three panels: “The Bartender’s Guide to the Galaxy” (I once worked as a bartender, I’ve invented a couple of exotic drinks in my stories — remember, when making a Nervous Nellie, add the liquid nitrogen last — and off the top of my head I can think of at least three or four SF short story series set in bars or taverns); “Terraforming the Earth” (I’m more interested in terraforming other planets, and the global warming folks think we’re Venus-forming the Earth); and “Exploration Space Architecture Study” (near-term plans for exploring the inner solar system).

There’ll be the usual mix of gaming, videos, art show, dealers’ room, costumes and panels covering topics of interest to aspring writers to author readings to the legendary Friday night pajama panel, and of course the original Critter Crunch on Sunday.

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