Before I get into it, I just wanted to stop and say HELLO to whoever it was that made a syndicated feed of this website on LiveJournal. I kinda wish you’d told me, so we could better keep it updated (it hadn’t updated since the site restructure 3 months ago), but I futzed with some redirects and got it working again.
On to the real updates. My parents flew out last Wednesday to spend a week visiting us. It’s been good fun, and I’m glad to see them. They got to meet our puppy, and we’ve done some basic touristy stuff (Science Fiction Museum, went out to Port Townsend and Port Angeles, etc), and in general have had a pretty laid back week. It’s amusing, since they get up before Mickey does, and generally by the time I come downstairs, they are sitting in the green chairs Mickey found on Craigslist for free, reading. We’re meeting with Uri for dim sum this afternoon, which I’m sure he’ll appreciate, since he’s unfortunately shouldered most of the driving burden in coming down here to visit us rather than us drive up to visit him. (As a side note, Freya LOVES Uri. Initially we were unsure how she’d handle him, since he’s A: male, and B: 6’8″. We needn’t have worried, she thinks he’s the best thing since doggie treats.)
On a technical note, I did in fact order my new machine. The specs listed before are accurate, and it should be shipped by the 28th (possibly sooner). My brother (the PC user in the family) simply pointed out that I could have picked up 3 or 4 Mac minis for that price. Use Pooch to connect the processors and it’d be a pretty hardcore machine (in fact, there’s already a company offering co-location hosting using Mac minis). That’s not really the point, however. The machine I got is more expandable, more adaptable, more powerful, and won’t become truly outdated for quite some time.
I got slammed by the sales tax, and was almost tempted to look into getting it shipped to our friend Dan’s house in Portland (no sales tax in Oregon, for those not aware). Even with the 2 hour drive each way and the gas prices being what they are, I would have still saved considerable money (tax came to $260 for the computer, which is a set of speakers, or an iSight, or a new airport base station, or…)
School has been going moderately well. My packet was a little late, and I’m wondering when I’ll be seeing the response (haven’t yet). I’m working on my next packet, and not worrying about it. As ever, I need to do more writing, both fiction and annotations. More on the fiction side, though, as I haven’t really developed any of my fiction pieces beyond last packet’s work yet. I did some editing of the NanoMage draft, however, as I used that as a fiction-writing submission for a potential job.
Writing… still gives me trouble, but I think I’m getting somewhere with it. What really helped me was reading Neil Gaiman’s blog, in particular the entry where he discusses his relationship with his work. He comments that he never likes his own work and always thinks it could be done better. If it succeeds in what he wanted to do, however, he’s satisfied or even happy with it. Getting such an admission out of an author like Neil is really encouraging to people like me, who feel everything they write is tripe (despite others around me liking it). Hopefully I’ll be able to keep it mind long enough to actually finish a piece or two. (As I read somewhere a while back, just because it feels like it drags when you’re writing it doesn’t mean that it drags when you’re reading it, and cutting or revising parts that actually DO drag is what revision is for.)
This is just a general update on what’s going on, so I apologize for the topic-jumping. I’d really like to get back into blogging for the sake of blogging (I enjoyed it), but life needs to settle a bit first. I always feel chintzy doing simple updates like this, especially when I compare to some of the posts I wrote in the past. In any case, time to get ready to meet Uri for lunch. Check back again.