• Review

    On Spec #79 Review

    Another great issue full of fun stories from On Spec. Orchids by Christopher Johnstone A man searching for odd creatures — and always disappointed — goes to a forest looking for a dryad. A good story, with an interesting take on the dryad as creature and theme. Carter Hall Judges the Lines by Marissa Lingen Carter Hall has figured in a few stories in On Spec and this hockey player turned reluctant ‘protector against weirdness’ has his hands full this time, dealing with some rather dangerous women. A fun read, as are all of Carter’s stories. Commonplace Sacrifices by L.L. Hannett Really really bizarre story with a guardian angel of…

  • Review

    A Note About Reviews

    For the Readers Occasionally I do reviews of magazines and novels on the blog. These reviews are almost always short and generally positive, more of a “hey I read this”. I’ll seldom go into great detail, usually only if I really like or dislike something, or if I know the person who has written the piece. This is more a matter of time, than an inclination. I know I always like stumbling across a person who has read a story of mine. For the Writers If you’d like me to link your name or story to your website, just message me and let me know, I’ll be happy to do…

  • My Life

    More reasons I like my iPod Touch

    I don’t own a cell phone. Have only had one, once, and for a very short span of time and doubt I’ll ever own one again. I don’t understand people walking, driving, and standing at counters, talking and texting away on their little devices. In truth, I find it annoying. But… I consider myself a tech geek. And so last year I bought an iPod Touch… I’ve posted about it before and overall I really like the damn thing. There are things I hate about it — so much of its media is locked in and has DRM, the device is sealed and discourages hacking, you can only develop Apps…

  • My Life

    Healthcare

    This is just an observational post based my own experiences. I’m posting because I’m still surprised by the outrage against the move towards fairer and more all-encompassing healthcare in the United States. I really can’t wrap my mind around why people object to it, and so strongly. Our family’s most recent ‘medical’ incident was that our 2yr old had pneumonia complicated by his asthma. In a two week period we had five doctor’s appointments and a day and a half stay in the hospital. Total cost to us? $0. Not having to worry about the money allowed us to focus on getting him well. The moment money becomes a concern,…

  • The Lazy Designer

    E-mail Etiquette the CC vs BCC

    So the other day I received an e-mail from an editor, the contents of which are unimportant. But what is important is that the editor did a carbon copy of the email to dozens of other authors (using the cc field). So? The problem with this is that I now have the e-mail addresses for a bunch of writers, some of which, like myself, use a private e-mail address for professional correspondence. Now, its not the worse thing in the world for some other writers to get access to these addresses, but it was still a breach of each writer’s privacy. I’ve seen the same thing happen back when I…

  • My Life

    Board of Directors anyone?

    Since I’ve retired from a dayjob I’ve been supporting myself a bit with my writing but primarily through stock and fund investments (the realworld kind, not the Empire Avenue kind). One aspect of owning stock that I hadn’t thought much about before actually owning shares in a company was the board of directors. Now I regularly get literature from the companies I own stock in, discussing their upcoming plans and often, nominations for new members of their boards of directors. As part of this process they disclose the money and incentives that members of the board receive. And wow, do some of them make a boatload of money. And by…

  • Writing Resources

    The Underachieving Story

    Currently I’m struggling through editing/rebuilding a story I wrote the first draft of back in January. I’m really procrastinating (hence this blog post). It just has never had the ‘magic’ I thought the original concept would deliver. Anyways, I went through some old notes on other stories as a way to avoid the dread edit and realized something. Last year, spring, I wrote three stories back to back. Of the three I thought one was great, one was good and one was okay. The great story still has yet to find a home. The good story was recently sold. And the ‘okay’ story? Well, I never really felt it achieved…

  • Writing Resources

    Iceland 1 World 0

    What one volcano in Iceland has been able to do to this ever-so-interconnected world of ours has been fascinating. I’ve been following the news voraciously. I’ve always liked Iceland, reading their eddas several years ago and I plan to visit one day. And the first story I had published was a story about Iceland (or almost about it). That story, His Island, is available to read from my website. And then there’s this fabulous photo from NASA showing lightning around the volcano.