Lazy Weekend; Games and Cloud Atlas and stuff

I haven’t done anything constructive all weekend. It’s been great.

Friday night we went out for a belated birthday celebration (steak at Outback, which was disappointing; the rib-eye was tough and over-seasoned), and bought a bunch of birthday goodies—some games, a Steam gift card, and some TV shows and movies on DVD and blu-ray.

Saturday: I had to re-install my Steam client (it wouldn’t connect), then I bought a couple of games with the card: Alice: Madness Returns—the sequel to the original American McGee’s Alice—is ready to play, but I haven’t started it yet; Syberia and Syberia II were 75% off so I got those, too.

I played Syberia when it came out, but that was a long time ago, so—especially since it only cost about $2.50—I went ahead an bought it. And spent most of Saturday playing it. I hadn’t intended to—I was going to play Alice—but I started it off, just to remind myself how it looked, and got kinda hooked. Interesting game, and very Steampunk.

Sunday: started into some of the DVDs. First up was Cloud Atlas, and it’s been haunting my thoughts since. For the first half hour I didn’t know quite what to make of it, and I wasn’t sure how the bits connected, but things started to come together by about halfway through, and by the end I was enthralled. I can’t get certain scenes out of my head. I’m going to have to watch that again soon.

Next, Star Trek: Into Darkness. Damned good. I will say no more.

Rounded off by watching a few episodes of Castle, season 5. I love that show.

So: it’s Monday morning, 6:45am, and almost time for me to fire up the work laptop and get into day-job stuff. I feel rested and ready to go, so without further ado, I’d better get on with it. Until next time . . .

Psst… Wanna Read My Book?

. . . Well, you can! Advance Reader Copies of Mr. Gunn & Dr. Bohemia are available as PDFs for a short time, and you can have one in return for an honest review posted on Amazon, Goodreads, or your own blog. Xchyler Publishing might want to quote you, too. Interested? Click the Contact tab above, fill in the form (make sure to include a contact email address that I can pass on to the marketing director at Xchyler, who will be sending the ARCs out) and submit it. I’ll take it from there.

While I’m blogging, let’s have an update. Last week was a nightmare—flooded roads Monday, family member in hospital Tuesday and Wednesday, then water in the basement Friday; laid over that was a slew of day-job technical problems that had to be fixed. Despite all of which I managed to finish proofreading Gunn & Bohemia. What a week.

Today, working at home while waiting for guys to come and dry out the basement carpet. They didn’t show up until 2:30pm, but when they did they got on with the job.

On the writing front: I’ve been working up a short story for Xchyler’s next Steampunk anthology contest, which opens for submissions at the end of October. I have the whole story in my head; next step, write it out scene-by-scene.

But that can wait a bit. Today’s been busy and I feel the need to wind down. Time for dinner and telly; I have an urge to watch The Dresden Files if it’s still listed on Netflix.

Until next time . . .

What A Week

It’s been a few days since I’ve posted. It’s been a busy week; I haven’t had the time.

On the writing front, I’ve been trying to work on line edits for Chapter 2 of Mr. Gunn & Dr. Bohemia. I had a few minutes here and there, but not enough time to really get into it until yesterday, when I was at last able to finish the first pass—that’s the one where I take care of the minor rewording and punctuation fixes; it helps built up some momentum for the second pass, where I deal with the bigger (but also, thankfully, far fewer) changes that require heavier rewriting.

So, right now, that’s where I am with Chapter 2: warming up with a blog post while I wait for tea to brew, then I’ll be getting into that second pass. I have every intention of getting that finished and back to my line editor today.

On the everyday stuff: Monday I took off sick (fever; no idea what brought that on), Tuesday we drove down to the INS in Denver to take care of some papers, then Wednesday it was back to day-job work—which is under a tight deadline, so I wasn’t able to get into the above-mentioned editing even during lunch breaks.

Today, we’d originally planned to go to the Colorado Renaissance Festival down in Larkspur—but we ended up watching Breaking Bad (for the first time) on Netflix until 2am. So now it’s coming up to 10:30am and I’m barely awake, and in any case the weather doesn’t look so good. So I think this is going to be an easy day at home. In a little while, once my eyes are properly open, I’ll get back into the editing.

Once that editing’s done and the chapter’s in shape, the next thing I have planned is an hour or so on the still-as-yet-untitled fantasy short story. On that one, I’d reached a scene in which the two central characters have just met, and there’s a certain amount of dialogue—but on reading it back, the conversation comes over as forced. That needs some work, then it’s on with the story. Submissions open in ten days, and it’s not likely that I’ll be finished in time to submit on day one, but I have all of August; it will be completed in time.

Another thing I want to try to take care of today is a little bit of Twitter maintenance, spurred by a post on the Xchyler Publishing blog. As I think I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a follower-farmer; I don’t do the thing where you follow a boatload at random, hope they follow back, dump the ones who don’t, rinse and repeat. I don’t see the point. I follow people who have something interesting to say—or at least, that’s the intention—and I try to read all their tweets, so that limits the number I can follow (currently that’s about a hundred and forty). But it turns out that I’m following some people who really don’t say anything beyond marketing their book (or another person’s book), and perhaps retweeting in bursts (I’m talking about individuals here; I also follow publishers, and I expect them to be marketing—that’s their business—so that’s ok with me). There are also a few who I’m following purely because I followed them back in the days before I realised what was going on with the boatload system, and I never got round to cleaning that up. It’s past time to prune that particular bush, methinks.

Next weekend, we’ll be at Salt City Steamfest! The plan is to be there all day Saturday, so come and find me—I’ll be the one not wearing much in the way of Steampunk gear (I really don’t have any just yet, and I won’t have time to get any before the show). I’ll likely be at or near the Xchyler Publishing booth most of the time, and I’ll probably be on a panel to answer a few questions at some point. It promises to be great fun, and we’re looking forward to it.

Until next time . . .