blog

somewhere in time and space we touch asynchronously

Lana's Comet cover image

The time and place

Saturn's moon Titan, several hundred years after our present

The suspension of disbelief

Humanity has advanced to space travel within the solar system, and we've been able to terraform several planets and moons. Also, we created a race of engineered emotionless clones which didn't work out so well.

The quick summary

Dr. Lana meets Cyprus, a surly but appealing OSA officer shortly before her training, and they agree to meet later for a date. Unfortunately, she's a new recruit under his supervision, and he is brutal to his trainees. There go those fun plans. He's mystified by Lana, as she's an older than average recruit who's an ex-Corp (Meash Corp) employee and a doctor with excellent credentials. She could be making a lot more money elsewhere. They get closer as he attempts to figure out her secrets and hijinks of several kinds ensue.

book cover credit E Book Covers by Georgi

The place and time

United States of America, on Earth, in the near future. The area is called Sector Three.

The suspension of disbelief

Earth gets invaded by Not-Very-Near-Human aliens. Chaos and destruction ensue. Other Near-Human aliens (if I trust the cover art and description they are about as different as most early Star Trek aliens are from human) show up to fight them and are trying to live on earth with the humans. Most of the tech we know has been shut down or doesn't work, but the aliens are higher tech than we are.

Cover by Fiona Jayde

The place and time

Deep space and on the jungle resort type planet Dantaralon. I imagine it's in the far future in our timeline, but it could be an alternate universe.

The suspension of disbelief

Interstellar travel exists! Humans and other races are in space, and some aliens are at war with humans.

Quick summary

Meg Antille is working on a cruise ship, and Simon "Red" Thomsill, recently retired soldier, has gotten a job aboard it to get to know her better. During a stopover on a nature preserve planet, things go ill. The ranger station is deserted, the big dangerous wild animals aren't being kept away as they should, and then the ships take off without their passengers. Simon, Meg, and the other passengers get pursued through the jungle by pirates and have to find a way to get off-planet safely. During the journey, Meg and Red develop a mutual respect to go with their mutual attraction.

Like many people, I look at a lot of websites and consume a great deal of content. On a typical day, I visit most of the following:

Since I discovered SFR I added The Galaxy Express and Smart Girls Love Scifi blogs. I read along, entered a contest, and randomness chose me to win free ebooks. I was going to buy many of these books anyway, but I think that the writers' generosity should be...followed? Repaid? Anyway, those authors will get reviews for their newest books on this blog and on Amazon. It's another great way for me to put pressure on myself! I love adding things to my To Do list!

The past winter I took a writing class for short stories, and I found it rewarding. I had not written fiction in fifteen years, and I was unsure whether I'd enjoy another solitary hobby.  The experience has been rewarding afterwards, albeit in fits and starts. I had a story I wanted to flesh out, and there are plenty of sticky points in the plot I have not tackled. I have another story I'm thinking of expanding beyond four hundred words. They're both science fiction romance, or will be once I get more into them. The idea is to have fun and write something I can look at and say "yeah, that's kind of cool". My ambitions lie in finishing projects, the bigger the better. I have no deadline because I'm just doing this for me, but I try to set aside some time a few days a week to devote to books.

I have never fancied myself a writer. I loved writing when I was young, and I have always loved reading. As I aged, I stopped writing fiction. My internal editor and censor was too loud to squeeze much out. I would have plenty of stories in my head, but I would only jot down notes and use them as inspiration for the pen-and-paper/LARP games I was involved in. Writing is a craft that requires plenty of dedication and practice. Since I have so many hobbies, I've never thought I'd have the energy to give writing my stories. However, I recently had an idea that learning to write could improve my communication.

I've changed how I run tabletop games over the past thirteen years. I used to define everything about the world, leaving the characters fairly constrained in an approach referred to by M. Joseph Young as trailblazing. My partner John has referred to trailblazing before as 'the tour bus'. The GM drives you to Plot Point 1, points out some stuff, and entertains the PCs with a canned scene while they act the peanut gallery and do their quirks/traits at each other. Sometimes there's a scripted fight. Then back onto the tour bus for the next destination.

My day job is as a web developer, so I feel it's only right to make my own website for my creative output. The tailor should wear half-decent clothes principle, I suppose.

I'm making this site in Drupal because it's powerful and I know at least some of how to administer it, as my site is on a DIY server. I learned Drupal theming on the job and it's quite idiosyncratic, and it's a bear trying to remember where everything is. That said, it's kept up-to-date and secure and I can even use a package manager to update it. I've used CMS Made Simple, but that, though easy to use for editing, was not the easiest to maintain. This is just the single-user-who's-also the admin case. If you have multiple non-technical users, CMS Made Simple is less work for them to use and learn than Drupal. 

My relationship with social media confuses me. I signed up for Facebook in college and now use it to look at pictures of my friends' cats, see where people I've lost touch with are living and who they are loving. I 'follow' four people's feeds: my brother's, my best friend from childhood/adoptive sister's, a close friend from college/former boss, and a friend who is local to me but posts good things about baseball, cats, and Hawai'i. I have twitter and tweet once a year in a twittish fashion, I follow plenty of people but only consistently read Devin Townsend's posts. I use Google Plus to keep updated on my gaming acquaintances and friends from the Boston area. I keep a LiveJournal for my parents and some old friends and as a chronicle of my mundane life.

I've blogged for over two years about underwear engineering and construction. I still don't really know how to write prose. I thought I would write about my vomit slime generating algorithms.

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