Norwescon and Others

So, in a flurry of end-of-week emails, I’ve been notified of several event cancellations due to COVID-19 health concerns, and various state Emergency policies banning gatherings of 250 people or more, not only in Washington, but in other states as well. Many of these events weren’t even on my offiical books, yet, and some are not of professional note here, but this one is: Norwescon—the longest continually-running SFF convention in Washington State has cancelled the event, which takes place every Easter Weekend, in compliance with Governor Inslee’s “Social Distancing” guidelines and banning of large group gatherings for the duration of the declared State of Emergency.

Having lived through several epidemics, having read a lot about the 1918 Flu and other real world epidemics, I’m aware that our current health care and response actions are much more sophisticated than they were 100 years ago—largely due to hard lessons learned. Frankly, I find a great deal of what is currently ciruclating on social media and the news to be hysteria and catastrophizing, BUT, I see the necessity of a rule and standard action plans for management of a possible problem.

It’s frustrating to have worked to put events together just to have them shut down through no action or fault of yours or the venue in which they were to be held. But, as Grandma Jane used to say, “Thems the breaks, kid.” I’ll look forward to working on these events again in the future, but in the meantime, we’ll all have to keep on marching forward, because nothing is gained by standing still and crying (or howling at others).

For now: Use soap! Wash your hands (and face, and clothes, and dishes, and towels…) frequently. Stay home if you can, and don’t villify those who can’t. Don’t hoard the toilet paper. Be thoughtful. Don’t fling blame around—it’s nasty sticky stuff that you don’t want on you, either.


Grim Oak Press is having a Sale

Some of you may already have a copy of the anthology Unbound, from Grim Oak Press, which includes my slightly twisted fairytale villain story “Heart’s Desire,” but if you don’t, now’s the time to grab it for only $20! Yup, premium hardcover for a mere $20 or the Ebook for only $2.99! Quite the deal, yes? Click on the cover photo to the right to go straight to the hardcover edition.

If you just want to pick up some fantasy fiction that’s guaranteed to be Pretty Damned Cool, check out the rest of the offerings at Grim Oak Press—Including Street Freaks by Terry Brooks—during their Super Tuesday sale. It runs for the rest of the month of March. Just click the link:

Grim Oak’s Super Tuesday Sale!


For now

I’ve got all the major parts of this site done. They’re not all to my liking, some of the widgets don’t work as I’d like and I still can’t figure out how to make a scrolling gallery for the Books page, but it’s functional at this stage.  More will happen in the Extras page eventually, and I’ll probably end up letting the original Blood Orbit page die off when it comes up for renewal, since I don’t have the skills to create the necessary graphics and art that would be needed to complete the Lexicon, but right now, things work here and are complete enough to get you the information you need.

Anybody who wants to talk will have to send email via the contact page, since open comments resulted in nothing but non-stop spam. I should eventually get the Akismet spam system back up and running, but not today.

I have a lot of work going on for Mystery Writers of America, and I’m still struggling with the rewrite of the current Work in Revision (WIR)—Marty is stubbornly refusing to change, the devious bastard—but it’s moving, if at a snail’s pace.

Someday, I’d like to write something new.

I seem to be getting it

Slowly but surely, I’m getting the hang of this new set of site tools and so on.

I still have a lot of content to generate, essentially from scratch, and media to recover, if I can. Right now, parts of the site are available, but empty, and others are only partially filled or linked, but it’s all coming along.

Tomorrow I shall be out in Bremerton at a Write-In hosted by the MWA Northwest Chapter—of which I am the current Chapter President, so there’s no getting out of it. But that means I won’t have time to do more here until late in the day, if at all. On the other hand, I’ll be able to do some work on the revision of the Marty Storm novel. Yay!

I Have No Idea What I’m doing…

I haven’t figured this all out yet… and the build system which is supposed to be so “simple” is killing me.

In the process of converting to the new platform and updating the design, I established a new database, but lost easy access to the old one. I also inadvertantly blew away the old site before this one was really ready to go, so I am trying to create content from scratch and ferreting through my very messy directories looking for pictures, cover copy, blurbs, CV, bio, and various other information that was already up on the old site.

While I know that the automated WYSIWYG, click-and-drag systems are easier for a tyro site-keeper like me to maintain, they aren’t always self-explanatory or as “intuitive” as their inventors may think. I’m a proto-nerd and yet I’ve been very frustrated with this process—which should have been done-and-dusted months ago, to boot. I’m also currently hosting 3 separate sites on 2 different systems/ISPs. One of them is not entirely open to me, as I only manage the site, I don’t have administrative control of it. Needless to say, it’s a little… fraught over here.

Trust me: I am trying to get this all done as soon as possible.

Stay tuned!