Twitching in the Corner


A little more than a week ago I setup a twitch account and started live streaming some of the video games I play. So far I have only streamed Mechwarrior Online and Baldur’s Gate 3. It’s been fun and I have met a few new people, so that is cool.

My tagline for the streams is that I am the Old Man Sucking at Playing Games. It is a fitting monaker because I really am pretty bad at video games. Don’t get me wrong, the more I play the better I get, but even that is not enough to say I am any good really. My friends at work that I play with Joke about starting up new games they can carry me through. I could be annoyed by that, but honestly I am embracing my rank mediocrity.

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Week One Mini-Nano Update


So I did not exactly blog every day over the course of this week, and I apologize for that. It turned out to be a really busy week for work and I added a new pastime to my online portfolio: Twitch Streaming. Playing some video games is my primary way to blow off steam, so I thought I would give the Twitch thing a try. I’ll talk more about that on another post, but it contributed to the limited number of posts I managed this week.

The good news is, as far as my Mini-Nano goes, I have managed to keep on track. Since my Day Two post I have managed to maintain an average of 651 words per day in 25 minute increments. Honestly this is the most consistent I have been in a while. I have cleaned up a couple loose threads and started working with someone who is helping with the editing of the story. If I can catch a little break at work this week then I will post a chapter or two and I would love to get your feedback.

So how are you doing with NaNoWriMo or your Mini–Nano? Are you keeping the pace, working ahead, or endlessly falling behind? Let me know!

Mini-NaNo: Day Two


Another day, another twenty-five minutes. I call that a good start. I managed to clear 632 words in today’s twenty-five, but more importantly I feel like I’ve set a path forward for the story. I even finished the chapter, so I may post it tomorrow or the next day depending one how brutal the day job is.

I really need to reread the whole thing and put some sort of timeline in place so I can figure out where I am going with this thing other than the vague notion of an ending. I imagine I will have to spend some time dedicating myself to organization this weekend.

So how about the rest of you? How are you doing on NaNoWriMo? Did you create your own Mini-Nano goal? Tell me about it. I want to celebrate your triumphs with you.

Writing

Mini-Nano: Day One


So today I started my Mini-Nano adventure. My personal goal is to hit twenty-five minutes of writing per day for the next thirty days. I did not get a lot of response on the poll I posted regarding Mini-Nano, but those who did respond picked Beyond the Darkside as the project of choice, so that is exactly what I have done.

I ended up writing for about 26 minutes all things said and done, and in that time I managed a little more than 700 words. Now that is nothing epic, but that is a good amount of writing for me as of late, so I will take it.

One day in. One day successful.

I need to figure out the exactly where I am going with this, so hopefully I can brainstorm a way forward in this story tomorrow. Once I have the current chapter done and a quick edit I’ll post it here.

No Pants Allowed!


https://www.needpix.com/photo/download/1803752/pants-clothing-jeans-fabric-blue-fashion-sky-modern-clouds

If you have spent even a modicum of time in the writing community you know that there are two kinds of writers. Outliners and Pantsers. Let me explain for the uninitiated. An Outliner prepares an outline for the story, prepares for what is going to be written, and sets it out on paper (or Word doc). A Pantser is someone who has an idea, or a character, or a place, and just runs with it. There is little preparation. They are flying by the seat of their pants.

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Dungeons and Dragons Again…Only Different.


So a couple years ago I started playing Dungeons and Dragons again. I had not played since I moved out to North Carolina (other than a sad attempt with my boys and one of their friends), and it was something I truly missed. In Oregon I ran a few different campaigns that lasted for years and giving them up was one of the hardest things about moving to North Carolina.

A little more than two years ago a friend from work suggested that I check out Roll2.net and find a game online. I was a little skeptical, but I checked it out. I poked around a bit and decided to try running my own campaign. I put out a call for players an soon had a group together. Over the course of the next few months players left and new players took their place. I was learning a lot about how the system worked on top of remembering how to even play D&D 3.5. I am happy to say that I am on to a second campaign now, feeling comfortable with Roll20 and the rules for 3.5 again.

So what is the point? Well the point is that I’m going to be posting a bit of gaming related material here along with the usual writing and such.

To kick off this new addition, I am posting a few house rules that we use. If you use house rules or have a thought or two on the ones I mention here, please share.

Continue reading “Dungeons and Dragons Again…Only Different.”
Writing

NaNoWriMo OhNo!


No matter how many mistakes you make or how slow you progress, you are still way ahead of everyone who isn't trying.
— Tony Robbins

Every year as November approaches I go through the internal debate of whether or not to do NaNoWriMo. In all the years I have tried to do NaNo I have only hit the 50K mark once. I always start out with the best of intentions and do well at first, but I always fall short in the end.

So why am I missing the mark? The first problem is as it is for most people: Time. I am lucky if I can crank out a couple thousand words in a week, much less 1667 per day every day for a month. I work a full time job and have a wife and kids. I could probably do 1667 per day if I could find a solid couple hours uninterrupted before 10PM. Most of my writing happens between ten and midnight, but lets face it, I have been up since about 6AM and have been going pretty full tilt until about nine or ten. I am freaking exhausted by the time I can sit down and write.

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Review: Euthanauts #1


Originally Posted on Geek-O-Rama.

Writer: Tini Howard
Artist: Nick Robles
Letters: Aditya Bidikar
Publisher: IDW

There was something special about the woman at the restaurant. Thalia did not know what it was, other than that she was obviously terminally ill, but that wasn’t it. No, there was something more to it, but Thalia could not put her finger on it. When Mercy Wolfe followed her into the restaurant bathroom, Thalia had no idea her whole world was about to change.

Black Crown’s inaugural issue of Euthanauts is a visual masterpiece right from the beginning. Nick Robles’s art is sharp and on point, delivering a tone of brilliant contrast from the start. Continue reading “Review: Euthanauts #1”

Millstones and Milestones


Seventeen. My oldest daughter would have turned seventeen last week. Seventeen seems like such an unimportant birthday. You became legal to drive the year before, and it will be another year before you are an adult. Seventeen is just seventeen.

As I sit here at the park watching my boys and my little girl play at the park, I can’t help but think there is more to being seventeen. This year would be the last she would be a child. Responsibilities sh e will never have to face would be looming around the corner. Decisions about the future would need addressing. She does not have to worry about any of that, but I wish she did.

This morning might have opened with a big breakfast, if we could get her out of bed, and she would have gotten hugs and kisses until she told us to go away. We wouldn’t listen. A dinner of her choosing and a cake made by her mom (or maybe her brother since he loves to bake) would end the day. Would she go out with her friends, or would she stay home with her family? I don’t know, and I never will.

My wife asked me if it would ever stop hurting. I told her no. It will always hurt when those two lonely milestones come around.

For my part the grief for her, my Hailey, hangs about my heart like a millstone grinding away at the wheat of my soul with a slow persistence that I may never be rid of entirely.

Thankfully, I have my wife and children to keep me whole. They are the light that chases away the darkness that wants to feed the destructive urges that lurk beneath the surface. They may never know exactly how much I love them, but I try to show them and tell them every day.

The Sound of Silence


I saw this video making the rounds on my facebook feed, but I never had the time to check it out until early Saturday morning. I love the original version of the song and I like the band Disturbed, so I though the combination might be interesting. I was not wrong. Don’t let the fact that they are a heavy metal band put you off of watching the video or listening to the music. The words are every bit as powerful and the music is haunting in a way that the original never quite reaches. Open your ears and your mind and check this out. You won’t regret it.