It’s almost the halfway point!

So far, I’m keeping just above the daily word count goal. The story has developed a romantic turn, to an extent, and when this is through, I’m going to have a helluva lot of research to do! Right now, I’m just pantsing along as usual. We’ll see if it actually turns into something I want to publish, here or elsewhere.

I did meet someone at our library write-in who is publishing his story to fictionpress as he writes it. Since he’s rated it as “M” (think a movie rating of “R”) it’s not getting the traffic he would like. Hopefully, when he’s finished, he’ll be able to reconsider the rating. One of his plot twists is hilarious: he made one of his characters a lycanthrope but a specific type of dog lycanthrope instead of the traditional wolf. So the character has dog traits. You can imagine what some of those are!

Thursday was also ML Appreciation Day. Some of my Wrimos chimed in to tell my co-ML and me how much they appreciated us. The staff always sings our praises in e-mails and on the ML’s private forum. But I actually got a gift from my daughter, the artist. She had been working on a series of avatars for me to use online, basically a picture of me (looking much better than I in real life!) enjoying some of my favorite fandoms.

Here’s the base picture:

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Here’s me as the Fourth Doctor, he being my Doctor (and having a scarf like his, too).

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Here’s me in four different Thunderbirds uniforms: the original series, the 2004 movie, the new Thunderbirds Are Go! show, and as Dr. Dianne Tracy, my RP character from International Rescue: The Next Phase.

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But what kept me chortling from the moment I saw it was my ML one!

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I shared it with all the other MLs in the chatnano ML room, and for the first time in 11 years, I changed my avatar on my NaNoWriMo profile! The Girl told me today that the shirt–which you can’t see very well here–is an amalgam of my navy ML signal shirt and a sketched skyline of Greenville, including the Liberty Bridge. So much fun!  There’s a Girl Genius one yet to come, but she says that will take some time to figure out because she has to change just about everything, including the glasses.

So, that’s the scoop as I wrap up week two. Write-ins tomorrow at M. Judson, Booksellers and the Augusta Road branch of our county library system. After that, I should be on the downhill slope to 50K!

My self-designed cover

This is for use only at the NaNo site–I would commission a cover if/when this story ever sees print. I got a little input from the Girl about the background but the rest is all mine. I’m putting it under a cut because I think it’s kind of largish and I’m usually all about the neat when it comes to my site.

ETA: I just realized that my statement “the rest is all mine” sounds like I took the pictures. I didn’t. I found them at FreeImages.com (formerly stockxchng.com). The images are generally free for non-commercial use. I just put all the elements together in GIMP.

Continue reading “My self-designed cover”

I’m finding that coding my stories is very… therapeutic.

Been working on coding things for my personal fiction site. I’ve finished and posted Mosaic – though that will be updated when the muse strikes – and I’m working on The White Winds. There’s still lots to do, but I’m almost halfway through the chapter formatting. I’ve managed to get it down to a routine. Open the .txt files, put in the chapter coding snippet for each chapter. Scroll down and add the back and forward buttons snippet. Tweak them to the proper chapter numbers. Remove the “next time, next chapter” stuff and paste it in a .txt file. Scroll up; add new title and cut the teasers and disclaimer. Then save as a .shtml file. Leave them all open, find a scene divider and change it with the short horizontal line snippet. Copy that, and do a global replace on all open files. Do a preview skim to make sure things look right, then save and close all. Really, I just did about 15 chapters and it only took an hour or so.

Seriously, the biggest time eater is finding images for the splash pages and writing the foreword. On Mosaic, it took me beyond forever to figure out which screencaps to use (and I found I’d duplicated some from earlier stories), and then the free photos that spoke to the drabbles. For The White Winds, I’ve asked my daughter to update a piece of cast art that she’d done for me earlier. Her artwork has progressed soooo very far that she was embarrassed by the old stuff. Since I’m working so quickly on coding this, I should poke her about that piece.

I’m also trying to decide if I should add my two non-Thunderbirds one-shots to the One Shots book. I’ve done one for The Incredibles, and one for Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. My fanfiction is so heavily Thunderbirds-oriented, but these deserve a home, too. (They are posted on ff.net and on FanNation.) Tell me what you think about that.

In other writing news, I’ve pulled most of my work from Lunaescence Archives. I have several reasons for this. Things that were broken aren’t being fixed is one of them (thinking of forum registration here), but an increasing dissatisfaction with the way the archive is being run, and the ever-stronger skew toward anime and manga (and reader-insert) stories are probably stronger reasons. I’m sad about this, really; so many archives tend to go downhill once their owners are no longer involved in running and upgrading them. And now this has happened (IMHO) to Luna. (Yes, this puts me in mind of Thunderbirds Central, and parts of IR:TNP that need updating, too.)

As far as my personal “cyberstalker” (Lillehafrue’s term) is concerned, I haven’t heard from her again. Hopefully, I never will.

Back to the HTML editor, Batman!

Happy Halloween!

We’ve hardly had any trick or treaters come to our door tonight and we bought lots and lots of candy to give out. I’m afraid that the kids will be taking chocolate in their lunches for the next two weeks! For the first time, we let the boys go out trick or treating. Boy #1 went out dressed like a mailman (surprise, surprise!) and Boy #2 went as a cowboy, wearing the hat and guns he got in New Mexico.  Hubby, who had taken the day off, went around with them. They just went around the block, no farther, but still came back with a decent amount of candy.
 
We have four jack o’ lanterns on the porch, one on each step. Boy #2 did a traditional face, Boy #1 did a spider that came out looking cool. The Girl’s sun, moon and star didnt’ come out so well, but Hubby carved his comic strip character, Captain Kiddeo, into his pumpkin. It looks so funny! I thought about doing one; I’ll do one next year, though. I’ll try and take a picture of them during the day; my little camera doesn’t do too well at night.
 
Speaking of chocolate, Hubby bought me quite a bit of sugar-free stuff yesterday, including, to my delight, sugar-free Hershey’s Special Dark. I’m afraid I’ve eaten the whole bag (there were only about 10 little bars in it). It was soooo good.
 
Report cards come home tomorrow and we’ll eventually take a trip to Krispy Kreme for the “Donut for As” program they have. I expect that the boys will have all As (I already know Boy #2 does) but the Girl will be a different story. I expect at least two, probably three As and the rest Bs. That’s okay with us as long as she’s doing her best and keeping up with her work.
 
Chapter 16 of The White Winds, and chapter 11 of Overtures both went up yesterday. NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow and I’ve got my ideas percolating. I’m going to try and give myself a certain amount of time each day for writing; my parents are coming and I just have to get the house in order for them.

Two new pictures from C.!

Pictures of The Honorable Addison Kennicot, Senator to the World Congress representing Great Britain (and Lady Penelope’s old school chum) and of Renée Baptiste, IR Agent 38 are up in the Masquerade album. I’ve also added pictures of the other three cats to the Serendipity album as well. And I finally figured out how to edit the captions! It’s about time!
 
Finished the grocery shopping, or so I hope. Mega bucks spent, but all of it needed. I keep telling myself, “Two weeks, two weeks…” The only things we should have to pick up in the next two weeks will be bread and milk. The rest of the family got shorn today, including the Girl who wanted 2 inches off her long hair. I’m the only one left. Hopefully Monday, I’ll have time.

Another gorgeous pic by C.

C. sent me a pic today of Brigitte Andersen, known as Agent 87 in my fic, Masquerade. It’s gorgeous! Definitely a girl for John Tracy. She said she’d do one of each of the agents in the story and I can hardly wait to see how the others turn out!
 
Finished off the toffee today, and will return the container with a post-it note of thanks. Hubby thinks that if I write more than that, she’ll feel obligated to make more toffee.
 
Masquerade  21 and The White Winds 6 are both moving along. Just need to go through my conversations with Bluegrass to find the places she mentioned to I can choose a hometown for Peter.
 
Hubby has gone out for Chick-Fil-A. Hope he gets back soon.

At Last! Elfwood has come through.

Wahoo! Elfwood has finally put up my Girl’s little fantasy art gallery. I’ve added the link to my favorites on this page, along with my Hubby’s online cartoon. Both are worth looking at, if I do say so myself.

Hubby didn’t go to church on purpose today; it seems he’s hurt his foot somehow and besides that, he had a bad night sleeping. When I came to bed around two, he got up and went out to the couch. Not because of me, but because he was restless and didn’t want to wake me.

Working on chapter 20. It’s coming slowly but it’s coming. In some ways it’s lighter than what’s been going on in the story lately, but still has its angsty moments. I’m trying to check in on all the venues preparatory to the funeral and wake in chapter 21. My one hang up is what do I do with the main villain at the moment. Gotta give this some more thought.

Lunch time. Back later as the muse allows.

Can I scream now?

I have been booted offline by MSN several times this evening, causing me to change the access numbers twice so far. I only have two more after this one, so things had better stay stable for a bit. My connections speed isn’t up to snuff either. I have to shake my head and wonder what’s going on with MSN these days.

Hubby spoiled me tonight. Bought me a jamocha shake from Arby’s. To offset it, he also bought me a chicken wrap, of which I only ate half. Why? Because I wanted to somehow balance the mega sugar carbs I was getting from the shake and the other carbs I was getting from the yummy onion petals. But I was thankful. It made me feel normal for a change. I’d hate to see my BG numbers in an hour or so though!

Stuck on where to go with Chapter 20 of Masquerade. I’ve got two scenelets done that I’m happy with, but the third one is giving me a bit of trouble. I have a goal for chapter 21, and I’m not sure I’m going to make it. Grrr. There’s so much going on in so many different settings in the story, and all of it seems important. I feel rather like Brains does in the little scenelet I’ve written. Too much on my plate and something essential being left out. Too many plot bunnies to juggle here. I need to narrow things down… but the boys are beginning to clamor for a rescue on top of it all! Sheesh!

I am finally refueled.

Got out to WalMart tonight and bought myself some more Russell Stover’s sugar-free chocolate.  They still didn’t have the caramel drops I love so dearly, but the coconut ones were back, hurray! Grapes were on sale, but I really shouldn’t have bought them; we have so many of the little plums that KF sent along. I had one today finally. They aren’t much bigger than cherries, but sooooo sweet! Makes me wonder if the one little plum I had was what shot my BG level up or if there’s some other reason.
 
Working on Masquerade 20 a  little, and added to my photobucket account as well as to the photo albums here and at IR:TNP. C’s latest is soooo gorgeous! The tiger is magnificent! The Girl keeps asking, “How does she do that?”  Started a gallery at fanfics.org and updated both Masquerade and The White Winds on that site. The galleries I already have there, filled with C’s artwork, have gotten top ratings.
 
Been trying to exterminate the ants in the kitchen. So far, the ants are winning the war.
 
I’m glad we finally have a new board for Calling International Rescue. Just have to get used to the thing, that’s all. Sigh.

Rumble, rumble, rumble, mutiny, mutiny, mutiny

My vascular surgeon’s nurse took all day yesterday to get back to me. Seems my doctor is out of town until the 19th. She said she’d see if she could get me in with one of the other doctors, but didn’t call back. So I called back this morning. I’m to see one of the other partners on Friday at 1. She suggested today at 2 since I seemed to be a tad frantic about it, but that might conflict with the Girl’s appt. with the renal specialist.
 
Got chapter 5 of The White Winds up yesterday. C has sent me a first draft of Gordon vs. the Tiger. She suggests that she could take out the arm. I’m going to take her up on that. I think that the crew had hands free ear phones/boom mikes  by then. Her tiger drawing is gorgeous!
 
Well, breakfast is done and I need a shower. Then to put some clothes in the wash; I’m running out of summery stuff. More later if the mood moves me (and I can access this dumb thing!)