gridlore: Old manual typewriter with a blank sheet of paper inserted. (Writing)
The novel I failed at last year is returning, only this time I'm actually planning things in advance.

For each character I'm writing a short description and synopsis of what their motivation is. I'm also going to be creating an "action grid" of sorts; so I can place each character and the two MacGuffins in each chapter. I'll be color-coding for main plot, background action, and things that happen off-stage but are important. This is going to be sort of a SF Noir thriller, so I'm going to be juggling several threads. I'll probably flowchart the plot as well.

No, here's a question. The plot concerns a plot by a corrupt corporation to turn over several dozen genetic samples to a rather nasty culture that has done bad things with genetic engineering. The bad guys want these samples to gain an edge in the constant internal feuding over who is the best. One faction gaining control and building better monsters means an eventual war. So our heroes need to infiltrate the site of the meeting, play a con game to become part of the bidding, and replace the actual samples with flawed ones. Stealing the payoff is a bonus.

So how big would a container holding say sixty isolated DNA samples be? Assume the need to keep them stable outside a lab for at least four days. Gym bag? Large dufflebag?
gridlore: (Burning_Man)
So, how was your summer? Mine was great right up until last Monday. And by “great” I mean I had unnecessary surgery, never really went anywhere, and mostly hid in my apartment. But there was one shining beacon on the horizon: Burning Man! Yes, ten days of glorious art and weirdness and. . . and. . . waiting in line for five hours to get in followed by daily dust storms with 45mph winds.

But even at that, I was at the Burn! Me and 70,000 other weirdos soaking up the goodness and fun. I was kissed by not one but two hot European young ladies (one from Rome, the other London), took part in restocking some of the 1,500 porta-potties in a howling dust storm, and despite an apocalyptic storm on Burn Night the Man Burn was a thing of beauty.

Yes, everything was fine until Monday, when we started tearing down our camp. This is where my troubles began. First of all, we brought far too much water. The suggested 1.5 gallons per person per day is aimed at the younger, more active set. As dancing ‘til dawn to crappy electronic dance music wasn’t on our agenda, we ended up with a lot of water. We gave away two 7-gallon containers - filled - to a campmate who just wanted the extra weight to balance his trailer for the trip home. The other two, which we like better ergonomically, were just loaded onto the truck full. That left our 5-gallon water cooler. It was about a quarter full, and kind of gritty (that dust gets everywhere!). So, being the helpful guy I am, I picked it up to carry it out to our greywater evaporator.

And promptly tripped on my hydration backpack. We had been discussing replacing the camelbacks with insulated bottles earlier, and I think the packs heard us. I go flying, and immediately lose proprioception in my right leg. I was a bit stressed. Left foot comes down fine, I drive my right foot into the densely-packed Playa. Hard.

Funny thing about peripheral neuropathy: when it comes to my legs, everything hurts. All the time. So I just shrugged it off and limped over to where Kirsten was sitting. We peeled my boot off to inspect the damage. No discoloration, no swelling. No way I’m getting my boot back on, so we switch to the shoes I’m supposed to wear in Reno. Hurts like a bitch, but with some help from campmates, we get out of Black Rock City and head for Reno!

Which is where I realize things are getting worse. Wednesday, Kirsten had an appointment for a facial, and then we were off to the local ER! I take her to the best places on vacation. After a set of X-rays, the doctor comes in and says “You really did a number on your foot.” Folks, I didn’t break a bone. I didn’t break two bones. No, friends and neighbors, I broke my 2, 3, & 4 metatarsals! Big time! Which is why I have this giant horking splint and a new silly way of getting around. 50 years old and this is the first time I’ve ever broken a bone.

But when I related this story to people, they seemed kind of let down. “Doug,” they said in one collective voice, “that’s so mundane. We expect more from you.”

Right. Buckle your seatbelts and read the back of your ticket.

Twas the night of the Man Burn, and all were drawn as close as we were allowed around the iconic figure of Man, brightly lit in red neon. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a monster dust storm blew up! The wrath of the Playa was upon us! That’s when I saw her: a little blind Girl Scout carrying a backpack of what I assumed were adulterated cookies, being led astray by her guide dog, who apparently broke the first rule of Burning Man: ask what’s in the food. Disregarding the storm, I lept from the truck, racing across the perimeter as gale force winds battered me.

Blinded by dust, I pressed on! But then, disaster! The static electricity from the storm ignited the fireworks on the Man, and the whole thing burst into flames! Now I wasn’t just fighting the wind and scourge of the dust, but fire tornadoes were now whipping across the desert floor. Clothing burned from (most of) my body, I swept the little girl (who turned out to be just 18, lucky me!) and her stoner dog up into my arms to race back to the now-cheering crowd. . .

That’s when the Paiute attacked. Upset about burners using Pyramid Lake without the proper permits, the entire reservation came at us on SUVs and ATVs and other Three Letter Acronyms. Having only Adventure Cane and an encyclopedic knowledge of Errol Flynn movies to guide me, I fought off the taco-selling tribe while forcing my way to the safety of the L3K line!

Where I tripped over some moron’s abandoned bike and broke my foot.

The End.
Brought to you by Vicodin and my clumsiness.


My video of Burn Night: https://youtu.be/M7jmvXfws_E
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Illuminati!)
Douglas E. Berry - Creative Writing
11 JAN 16


The Bar Story Every Science-Fiction Author Has To Write


I really don’t like large parts of the World Science Fiction Convention. Oh, the panels are always excellent, seeing internet friends in person is great, and you can find anything in the dealers room. . . but the sheer size of things puts me off. Just too many people in close quarters.

So I had decided to forego the human sardine tin that was the party floor in favor of relaxing at the hotel bar. Luckily, the bar in this hotel had non-alcoholic beer and really good nachos. Sitting in a comfy chair people-watching was a good way to kill a few hours.

I was enjoying my relative private time until this guy plops down in the chair across me. It’s a free country, and an open bar, so I couldn’t complain. I tried to go back to watching the parade of fans in the lobby, but this guy was staring at me.

“Can I help you with something?” I asked in my best ‘go away and leave me alone’ voice.

The guy gave me a really crazy smile. “You’re Douglas Berry!”

“Guilty as charged. . . do I know you?”

“No, no. But I’m very familiar with your body of work.”

My body of work? I’ve sold three short stories and some role-playing material. Unless this guy worked for one of the contractors I used to haul material to, I had no idea what he was talking about. I took a closer look. He looked like any other fan attending the con - smartphone, badge festooned with ribbons, old convention t-shirt. . . That’s when I did a double-take. The shirt was from MidAmeriCon, the 1976 Worldcon, and it was brand new. The stranger leaned forward, and I could see that his name badge read Demanu Meatempus. I took a swig of my O’Doul’s, wishing it was something harder. This guy was starting to weird me out. “Okay, who are you, and what do you mean my body of work?”

The strange guy laughed. “I’m gonna tell you a story, and you aren’t gonna believe me, but I swear to you every word is true. I’m from the future, and I have a gift for you.”

“Unless it’s a sports almanac so I can get rich betting on the World Series, I don’t know what you could possibly have for me.”

“Well, I could have financial information to help you invest; but no, I brought you something far more up your alley. Y’see, in my time, you are remembered as one of the Grandmasters of Science Fiction. A visionary. Possibly the greatest futurist ever to write.”

“Well, you’re full of shit, but I like your story. Please, tell me how great I am.”

Another laugh. “Oh, I could go on for hours, but I will tell you that I’m a recipient of the Douglas E. Berry Writers of the Future Award.”

“Isn’t that the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Award?”

“Who?”

Now I was the one laughing. “OK, there is hope for the future. Let me buy you a beer.” Demanu peered at the menu as I waved over one of the servers. With some trepidation, he told the waiting server “I’ll have a. . . Heineken?” Except he pronounced it ‘He-in-ek-in.’ A fan who doesn’t know beer at all? This was beginning to get spooky. The server just rolled her eyes and left, returning quickly with a familiar green bottle. He took a sip and grimaced slightly.

“But back to it. You are a time traveller from some undetermined point in the future. . .”

“August 27th, 2568.”

“. . . right, and you’ve come here because I’m going to be a famous SF writer. Why not go see if Jesus really rose from the tomb? Or if Benjamin Bathurst really did walk around the horses?” I popped a nacho in mouth in triumph, only to have to slam the remains of my fake beer when it came loaded with a jalapeno. Demanu grinned.

“Time crashes. Think about it. We came up with time travel in the early 26th century, and based on evidence, we still have it three million years from now. Think about how many millions of people have tried to view or record the Resurrection. The entire era is a black hole. Same for Bathurst, except that time crashes seem to have caused him to vanish, possibly to a parallel timeline. Almost all the really interesting periods have been crashed, and the more attempts to look, the bigger the crash. I’m a historian. I’m researching the early phase of the Ideology Wars, and this is as close as I can get to the 11 September attacks! Being able to meet you, and help you, was just a bonus.”

He took another polite sip of his beer. “But my research time is up. This is for you.” He pulled a thumb drive out of a pocket and handed it to me. “Keep it chilled when you’re not using it. It has the complete political, economic, and military history of the next 400 years along with detailed explanations of the technological achievements we’ve made. There are major gaps - the Ideology Wars caused a lot of data to be lost - but there’s enough there to keep you going for years.”

Demanu glanced at the clunky watch on his wrist. “Whoops! Less time than I thought!” He stood and began to walk away before turning back. “To think I met the legend, Douglas Eugene Berry!” Then he sort of folded sideways and vanished.

“But my middle name is Edward!” I was speaking to an empty space. I looked at the thumb drive sitting in my hand with mounting horror. I write as Douglas E. Berry. He had found the wrong guy. Or had he? A lot of data had been lost, he said; maybe that included my correct name. Or was there a Douglas Eugene Berry somewhere who wasn’t going to be a Grandmaster of Science Fiction because this guy made the wrong connection?

Consequences be damned, I grabbed the departed Demanu’s barely-touched beer and drained it. Tomorrow, my pancreas might throw a hissy fit over the booze. Tomorrow was time to examine what was on the thumb drive and think about what to do. Tomorrow was a day to start writing about it.

After all, I am the Writer of the Future.
gridlore: A pile of a dozen hardback books (Books)
Yes, another fundraising post.

I'm working on a novel for NaNoWriMo. Working title is The Prophet Principle and it's a SF thriller/caper novel. I will finish this and publish it through Createspace. But here's the thing. . .

I suck at names. I tend to use name generators, which are fine, but I would prefer to both do something fun and raise some money for the trip. So I'm selling naming rights. I have about ten characters who will be in most of the book. About half will die along the way. Here's the deal.

For $250 donation to the fund, I'll name my protagonist after you, or whoever you want. I'll take your description or photo, any mannerisms or quirks, and write them in. Note the character is a confidence artist and thief.

For a $100 donation to the fund, You get to name one of the supporting characters. Same as above. Some of these characters have roles established, so we might have to find a good fit.

For $50, your name gets mentioned. Somewhere. Random bartender, Krazy [name]'s Used Starships, mook who gets killed and his mate goes nuts screaming "They killed [name]!" As above, but details will be limited.

When you make your kind donation, comment with "character." Kirsten will send you my email so we can have some fun. When the book is published, I'll autograph a copy and mail to all the people who became part of it.

I'll be honest; this book is unlikely to win a Hugo, or sell more than a few dozen copies. But I think it will be fun and I am determined to be published.

So please consider making a donation! We are still a few hundred dollars way from maxing out the donation match challenge from Earth Baby, so your donation will count double!

We just found out there is a book and map marketplace next to the Grand Bazaar. We need the money.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Atheism - God)
Had a fun assignment for my writing group. Everyone was to write a short piece, not more than a page and a half, all using the title "Angels in Hell." As expected, about half changed the title or put their names on their work. The works were read at random and we had to guess who wrote what. I was surprised that so few people identified my work, I thought my style was distinctive. Anyway, here it is:

Angels in Hell

“I remember being killed. Is that weird? I was walking off stage at the Indiana State Fair. Posing for pictures, shaking hands. Then I get punched in the back, fall off the stage into the mud. All I remember after that is the press of people and all of them screaming for someone to call 9-1-1.”

The man behind the desk, the one who had greeted me when I woke up in this nice office, smiled. “Not at all, Colby! Those who die when awake usually remember their last moments in the flesh. It’s the people who die in their sleep that drive us here in Receiving and Orientation nuts; usually takes hours to convince them that they aren’t dreaming.”

Sam - he had told me his name when I showed up - laughed at some joke only he was getting. I pressed on. “Just to be clear here, and meaning no offense, did you say I’m in Hell? Not quite what I was expecting. I’m not sure if I should even be here! I led a life of public service!”

Sam was leafing through a thick file that hadn’t been there before. “Oh, you belong here. Colby Garrand, junior United States Senator for Michigan, former Governor of Michigan, former Deputy DA for Oakland County. At the time of your death, you were on your way to the Republican nomination for President. Seems you lied, backstabbed, and cheated your way to the top.” Sam peered at me over the top of the file folder. He had very dark eyes. “A man after my own heart, really. Know what you haven’t asked?”

I shook my head.

“You haven’t asked who shot you. It was Miles Matthews, nephew of Frank Matthews, the man you railroaded into prison and death.”

I shot to my feet. “Now you hold on one darn minute. . .”

Sam also lept out of his chair. He was very big. “No, YOU wait. You withheld evidence from the defense, you intimidated witnesses and you bribed a judge. Then, as Governor, you manipulated the parole board. Frank Matthews was innocent, and he died in an attack in a prison workshop. That alone gets you into Hell.” Suddenly this wasn’t funny. My mouth got very dry. I tried to swallow past the lump in my throat.

Sam noticed my distress and produced a couple of beers. “Now, let’s talk eternal punishment! Since both your exes are in Heaven, you’ll be assigned a bachelor pad. You’ll be close to the library - which has everything ever written - and a rec center. Oh, I’ve taken the liberty in enrolling you in the Infernal Bar Association. Lawyers in Hell, who knew, right?” Sam laughed at his joke. “Mostly it’s a debate forum and drinking society. Now what else do we have here. . .”

“Bar Association? Rec center? What kind of punishment is this?” I couldn’t help myself.
Sam looked up. “Oh, that. Excuse me for a moment.” He stood up and left the room.
Before I could wonder where he had gone, I was suddenly enveloped in a blanket of pure love and protection. Infinite love, freely given, as old as creation. Then it stopped. I fell to the floor as Sam reentered. “Please!” I babbled, “Please do that again! I’ll pay anything! Anything!”

Sam considered me from the edge of his desk. “No, that was your one shot. That was what you gave up; that was the presence of God. You could have had that for eternity.” He pulled me back into my chair. “Know why we Fallen hate you so much? You’ll get over this. You’ll heal. It’s the gift that we fought the Throne for, the Free Will denied to us. We won the war, did you know that? But in the peace we were exiled to watch you termites build a new nest. What you just felt is our birthright, and you cast it off in pursuit of temporal power and pleasure.” Behind me a door swung open. “This entry interview is over. Get out. Take your reception packet and leave.”

I hurried out the door, clutching the thick envelope of papers that had popped into my hands. Behind me, before the door could close, I could faintly hear Sam sobbing.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Bosch)
Trying to write this morning. This is what I got.

The lad fancies himself a poet )

gridlore: A pile of a dozen hardback books (Books)

This is a bit that was sparked by a discussion at my writing group. I'm not going to try to sell it, because I've read any number of similar stories in the past. I'm just trying to get into the habit of always writing when a story idea hits me. Comments and criticism welcome. As I was checking for typos I realized that the Shade itself was inspired by the Domination win video from Civilization IV.

The Shade )

gridlore: A pile of a dozen hardback books (Books)
... and seem to be fond of alliteration.

I recently dredged up a story fragment I wrote several years ago for a fresh look. I rewrote it to take it out of the Warhammer40K universe, and expanded it a bit. At which point, Kollin, my view point character, started speaking like a Brit.

This was not planned. He just got written that way without my really intending it. Works for me.

Then I was writing what will be the second half of chapter 1. At some point, I swear Kollin looked at me and said, quite distinctly, "you know I'm lying about all of this, right? I'm a con man, a liar. Congrats, me boy, you have your first Unreliable Narrator." Which means I'm free to take Kollin on a twisted tale, and reveal at the end he made the whole thing up to amuse himself while being interviewed by a historian.

I've already done a first draft of the final chapter.

Does this happen to other writers?
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Default)

  • Completely fallen off the habit of writing here.

  • The "Goals & Accomplishments" thing has been stopped because it was just making me angry.

  • Too many Fails, not enough being done.

  • Plus, bronchitis really kicked me in the ass.

  • But life does move on.

  • Seeing new doctors.

  • Back to the Y on a regular basis.

  • Been trying to write more.

  • Gearing for upcoming events.

  • It's that wonderful time of the year here in Santa Clara where you can put almost anything out to the curb for pick-up.

  • As a result, our street looks like a disaster area.

  • We also have pickers coming through in advance of the official pick-up.

  • Normally an annoyance (They double park, block our narrow street, and drive at 5mph while scanning the piles) this year they worked in our favor.

  • We had a few things to put out. All the old dishes and glasses we're dumping, an old stereo, some other stuff.

  • I was really worried what would happen with all the breakable stuff in the street.

  • But yesterday [personal profile] kshandra was shaving my head in the carport (easier to clean up) and we saw a nice older gentleman looking over the pile across the street.

  • Got his attention, and he happily took all our crap.

  • Got to watch lifeguard training at the YMCA today. Really interesting.

  • Now I need lunch.

  • The Giants are struggling. We've dealt with a lot of injuries early in the season.

  • Today's game was rained out. Boo!

  • But we did sweep the hated Dodgers in SF, and our next three are against LA in Chavez Gulch.

  • BEAT L.A.!

gridlore: A pile of a dozen hardback books (Books)

This is something that came to me while noodling around with my "Dwarf Empire in Egypt" concept. I'm currently reading a history of Egypt, and the idea of extremely long-lived great houses and ancient blood feuds entranced me. [personal profile] kshandra says that Hekaib reminds her of Tyrion Lannister. Not intentional at all.

Family Ties )



I like these characters. I may do more with them.

There is an unintentional pun. Hekaib has very poor eyesight and is known as Grayeyes. His antagonist is from the House of the First Cataract.

gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Me - Glare of Sarcasm)

  • My apologies for mostly vanishing over the last week or so.

  • The letter from the government telling me that I can work again and all my benefits were going away just kicked my butt.

  • I was seriously non-functional for eight hours after reading that, and barely able to operate as an adult for the rest of the week.

  • But things have been done.

  • We filed all the paperwork for a reconsideration.

  • We've contacted a legal group for assistance.

  • We've spoken with my doctor.

  • Which also led to another melt-down when it turned out that none of my referrals had gone through.

  • Which should be fixed now.

  • But we did enjoy FogCon.

  • Remember FogCon? We went to FogCon before all this started.

  • Nice, relaxing event.

  • I got the entire Mars series autographed by Kim Stanley Robinson.

  • The non-awards banquet was good.

  • Saw some old friends we haven't encountered in too long.

  • Next up, BayCon, where I will be a panelist.

  • We've learned that we need to get a room on site so I can retreat and rest.

  • This drama has also played merry hell with my workout schedule.

  • I either forget to go to the Y, or am too stressed to go.

  • That changes now.

  • The YMCA is now on my calender. Three visits a week minimum. Monday night aqua-aerobics with [personal profile] kshandra.

  • The change in my energy level since I started working out has been amazing.

  • My writing continues to improve gradually.

  • Working on a couple of things I might submit for publication.

  • The writing group I attend through Santa Clara Adult Ed has been amazingly helpful.

  • I'll probably self-publish my novel through Amazon, just so I can saw I wrote a novel.

  • Y'all are buying it. yes?

  • Still want to get back into gaming.

  • Thought I had a couple of leads on a group, but they fell through.

  • Anybody interested in a regular gaming night in the South Bay?

  • 20 days to Opening Day for your 2014 World Series Champion San Francisco Giants!

  • Who have the Best Commercial Ever.

  • LET'S GO GIANTS!!!

gridlore: A pile of a dozen hardback books (Books)
An exercise I enjoy doing when I’m not feeling particularly creative is to come up with a simple scene and rewrite it from multiple perspectives. This both keeps me writing and also forces me to use different narrative styles. In this example, we have a nearly empty bar. Only the bartender and one regular are there at the beginning. Then a strange man enters, orders a drink, pours it over his head, pays, and leaves.
Read more... )
gridlore: A pile of a dozen hardback books (Books)
You get home from work, and there, sitting on the dining room table, is a buff envelope from the Selective Service. Your heart drops. You knew it was a possibility, but you never thought it was going to be you, right? You grab a beer and sit down to read it.

"Greetings. Having submitted yourself to a Local Board composed of your neighbors for the purpose of determining your availability for training and service . . ." You scan down to see the induction date. Two weeks. Two weeks of freedom.

Dad is thrilled, all he can talk about is his two years, story after story at dinner. Mom is worried about you. Will you handle the stress? You've never been so far from home before. She wonders out loud if this will change you forever, and, more quietly, if you'll even come home. At work the next day, you get handshakes and backslaps from the older guys in the warehouse, and sympathetic looks from the younger ones. They know that only fate kept their number from coming up. Your boss cheerfully assures you that your job will be waiting when you get back. If you come back. Your girlfriend takes it hard. She's heard the stories; everyone has. You swear you'll be true to her and write everyday, but she points out that you'll be under incredible pressure in a strange place. Who knows what will happen? Inevitably, the day comes. Nursing an epic hangover from your farewell party, you board your flight to the training base.

Training is another world. The instructors are hard men; they've been there and know what you will be facing. Long days of constant drilling, learning every detail of your duties, forever on the run. At night in your bunk you despair of ever being good enough. But you are making friends with your fellow trainees. You all work together, conquering the arcane arts you are expected to master. Everyone needs help with something, and as the weeks fly by, you begin to believe in yourself and your mission. Finally, graduation day arrives. All the hard work has paid off. Out of your class of 150, only 4 failed to pass, and one of those was a medical discharge. With flags snapping in the wind and the band playing, you take your final oath. Then, with almost no time to breathe, you and your friends are packed onto a chartered transport to your final destination.

The mood on the plane changes from celebration to somber contemplation of what will be required in the coming days. Again, the doubts creep in. It gets worse when you land. Shouting men with clipboards herd you to the waiting buses. Overhead, military jets streak by. The air is thick and muggy. So different from home. After a short ride through the packed city center, you finally reach your new home. More shouting men call out each newbie by name, directing them off the bus towards waiting groups of veterans of this place. Your name gets called. Clutching your papers, your legs turn to jelly. The guy waiting for you looks fearsome. But his smile when he sees you is genuine, and his handshake firm.

"Welcome to the Capitol, Congressman; I'm your Chief of Staff." He waves towards the dome looming over the scene. "Want the tour now, or would you like to see your office first?"
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Me - Thoughtful)
So after a brief break, I'm back in my writing group. Doing our weekly assignments and working out longer pieces has led me to a rather startling revelation.

I write fantasy.

If you were to peruse my bookshelves, you'd find tons of hard SF, the kind of books that are written by PhD holders and have technical appendixes. Alastair Reynolds, Hal Clement, Robert L. Forward... these luminaries and others are well represented and I devour anything with a good crunchy tech base and a strong story.

But when I write, I can't really do it. It's not lack of knowledge, I can do research with the best of them, but I find that my style just isn't suited to the genre. Even when I try less rigorous SF, my stories still wander off towards fantasy tropes without my wanting them to do so. The only things I've felt comfortable sharing (and trying to sell) are my fantasy works.

So I'm going to stick with what works for me. I've been thinking of doing a series of "Road" stories. Two heroes with a plot concerning going from A to B by way of the charming town of Hijinks Ensue. One is fairly straight forward man at arms, who carries his family's ancient ancestral sword. Problem is, none of those ancestors wrote down how to invoke the sword's powers. That's why he's wandering the world. The other is a former mage's apprentice who just wasn't disciplined enough for the trade. He knows a few minor spells, is decent with a sword and bow, but his real power (and curse) is his charm. Possibly add a recurring female character, who shows up mysteriously to move things along then is gone by the end of the tale.

Have to start plotting out the first tale once I've gotten some sleep. I'm on day three of not sleeping well at all.
gridlore: A pile of a dozen hardback books (Books)
I created this story in honor of one of my Pathfinder characters. Have fun, and please give feedback!

Brummig der Sieben )
gridlore: One of the "Madagascar" penguins with a checklist: [x] cute [x] cuddly [x] psychotic (Penguin - Checklist)

  • Been a while since I've done one of these.

  • Recovery is proceeding apace.

  • Aphasia is still a major bitch.

  • I've now added peripheral neuropathy to my woes.

  • Mostly in my left leg.

  • Been given lidocane cream for that.

  • Spent this morning at the DMV renewing my license.

  • Yeah, that sucked.

  • But it's done.

  • In other news, I'm really enjoying my writing class.

  • See previous entry for my first attempt at a short story.

  • I'm cutting way back on beer for financial reasons.

  • It's a luxury, frankly.

  • Had to let my Anticoagulation Nurse know, since changes like affect how I absorb the Warfarin.

  • But this will work well with my other big change.

  • If I get a story idea, no matter when, start writing.

  • The story I just posted came to me as I was lying in bed trying to go to sleep.

  • Still twitchy about Burning Man.

  • The Giants are currently sucking badly.

  • Pull out of it, guys!

gridlore: A pile of a dozen hardback books (Books)
Do the Rite Thing )
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Keep Calm)
Just finished a game of Civilization. At one point, Hammurabi declared war on me declaring "Die, you gravy-sucking pig." Bad move on his part, as I quickly overwhelmed his force, and took Babylon as the final prize. That's when I got creative...

No Room for Just Desserts. )
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Penguin - Wobble)
To quote [personal profile] kshandra:

Good news: [personal profile] gridlore's supplemental Medicare insurance was approved while we were gone last weekend.
Better news: The policy is retroactive to 10/01.

Bad news: We now have to come up with $524 for them by 11/01.

And I'm getting daily phone calls about our outstanding cable and internet bill - which they've already reduced for me once, but is still $200.

And we're starting to get phone calls about the imaging bills from Doug's hospital stay in August.

And the rent is due in a week.

I am fresh out of cope...and out of shame.

The PayPal address is purplekoosh at gmail. I know money is shit for everyone right now, so I certainly don't expect anything, but even just a dollar will help. And if you haven't got a ha'penny, boosting the signal is welcome.


I'm waiting to hear if I qualify for food stamps. And if you've never seen a $210,000 hospital bill, lucky you (Medicare cut that way down, but still...) We are once again at the end of the ropes.

I figure five grand gets us clear. Pays all the outstanding medical and insurances bills and keeps us alive. So, I'm making you an offer and making an announcement.

I'm writing my first novel. And I'm selling characters. Drop $100 and I name a character after you. Drop a grand, and you get the horrible death of your choice. Dump that five grand that's been burning a hole in your pocket, and you get the best death I can think of. A death that will make George R.R. Martin sit up and exclaim "why didn't I think of that." A death that takes five paragraphs to describe and ends with other characters trying to decide if that chunk is a foot or maybe some ribs.

No idea if this will ever get published, but still.. gift us money so I may stay alive and murder y'all (fictionally, of course.)
gridlore: The Imperial Sunburst from the Traveller role-playing game (Gaming - Sunburst)
Finally was inspired enough to start my first world write up for the book. 1500 words, and the draft is up for peer review.

I rewarded myself with a game of Civilization, which went badly. But given the date, I really want a copy of Sid Meier's Gettysburg. Be a good week to refight the battle with different levels of difficulty and tactics. Need to see if I can find a copy that will work on our box.

In other news, The South Bay has become close, close friends with the sun. 93° here in Santa Clara and climbing. About to take an ice-cold shower.

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gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Default)
gridlore

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