Playing around…

I was tired of the old theme and decided to change it up a bit. I hope you like it!

Also haven’t been writing much, either. We’ve had a death in the family, illnesses, and accidents, including one involving me and our now-totaled truck. (I miss it!) The new SUV is okay; it’ll hold the whole family for a trip north when necessary. My plan is to try Camp NaNoWriMo again to get me writing anything. On alternating days, I’m working out at the hospital system’s health club which helps with my attitude. Maybe working with Camp will help me with my authorial attitude. We’ll see.

I have lots of Kudos!

With the premiere of The Incredibles 2, I’ve noticed a lot of notifications from An Archive of Our Own for my short story, “The Visit”. That particular archive allows guests or signed-in members to leave “kudos” on any story. This is the first time a short story of mine at AO3 has generated such interest and I’m chuffed about it! From the comments, it seems I’ve been able to satisfactorily wrap up a plot thread from the first movie: what happened to Mirage, Syndrome’s helper? If you want to see how you can read it here (the link is in the first sentence), or you can read it at AO3. (It’s also on fanfiction.net.) Have fun!

A bit of site housekeeping news.

After a bit of finagling, I’ve managed to make my domain name, tikatu.com, redirect here without, well, the redirect. So, no more starting out on my old homepage; this WordPress build is now the official homepage for my domain. If you have my site bookmarked, you might want to update that.

Still working on my fanfic when I have the time and energy. I’m on Chapter 3, still, and need a bit more dialogue before I move on to Chapter 4. I don’t think the finished story will be 10K words but you never know with me.

Yes, a new theme.

I’m trying out this new theme as it seems 2014 (even with the added child theme) is used a LOT around the Web. There’s a lot I like about this one: it’s already optimized for various devices, the menus and widgets are hidden until they’re needed, and the custom header has that sort of muted overlay.

On the other hand, I don’t like the fact that all the headers seem to be uppercase, despite my specifying “Capitalized” on the theme settings. I don’t know if they’ve picked up the typefaces I specified, either, at least, not on the homepage. I find the all uppercase kind of overpowering; it’s like I’m shouting all the time. I also don’t know how to go about making changes as it’s written in SASS, a totally new coding language for me.

In any case, feedback from any of my readers would be very welcome, so let me know what y’all think! Thanks!

One step back

Well, not me taking one step back but fanfiction.net. They added new formatting tools to the user profiles and forum posting windows–including a “source code” button, but removed that one function from the actual document manager. (On the doc manager it was labeled “HTML”.) Do they really think we’re going to want the HTML versions of our forum posts? What were we going to do, post them at live journal? At WordPress? Facebook? Twitter? I can see the possibilities for the profiles; a user could conceivably make their profile standard across boards and archives they frequent. But not the forum posts.

Unfortunately for me, that “source code/HTML” function in the doc manager was one I used a lot.  It made posting my stories in other places (including here) so much easier! I’m not saying that posting here is now totally impossible; I’ve found a HTML converter which works from my Dropbox account. Converting ten files at a time doesn’t take very long. Neither does cleaning up the superfluous code when I use my free HTML editor (from CoffeeCup software–consider this a plug for them). The editor allows for find/replace through all open files, a time-saver to be sure.

Still, the HTML generator at fanfiction.net was easier still. Just export a chapter, toggle the generator, select all, copy, paste into an open Notebook file, and then save. Even with the neat features of my HTML editor, stripping the coding down to the bare formatting essentials still takes time I could use doing other things–like proofing said chapters for undetected SPaG issues. (That’s spelling, punctuation, and grammar, for the uninitiated).

Yeah, I realize Xing and company probably don’t want to facilitate an author’s move to another archive, nor do they have any obligation to offer such a function to the disaffected  (or to those who just want to spread their stories around, like I do).  But they have bigger issues to deal with if they want to keep their unsatisfied clientele–such as deleting plagiarized or copyright infringing stories. Better they focus on those than tweaking a relatively minor section of the entire site.  (I wouldn’t mind them reinstating the source code function for the document manager, either. In for a penny, in for a pound, as it were.)

I really wish I knew CSS!

Or actually thought before I acted.

First, my primary menu disappeared again. I have no idea why; I’m working in a child theme and all but just like the last time, it went poof! I’ve had to rebuild the verdammt thing all over again! Maybe styling it would help? Might have to try that.

Then I stupidly did a bulk action of delete spam to some comments that a non-functioning Askimet dumped in with the real comments. So now I have only two comments which I’d imported over from my WP.com site. I’m probably going to nuke those, too. Hopefully I’ll start getting comments here–if I ever get this site fully operational!

Waiting on one more beta for the newest chapter of Burning Muses. I’ve been told to make it more lyric, like a dance, but this is Scott Tracy’s voice and, like his father, he’s not given to flowery sentiment. Still, I’ll think about it. This will be the first place I post it!

More Updates

Still haven’t created that home page update thing, but I have uploaded Mosaic. Still needs a bit of tweaking, but I’ll get to that later.

I’ve also recreated my main menu for the umpteenth time. I’m hoping that, since I’m working in a child theme, it will stick this time. Wish there was some way of saving a copy of the menu offline so I can just reload it when necessary. I’ll really need it when I start uploading the novels!

Keeping it short here. If you happen to stop by, please go to the FCC’s page on net neutrality and make a polite comment. This really has to be stopped in its tracks if not killed in committee. The filing should be made on motion 14-28. It’s very important to keep the internet free and functioning for everyone. Don’t let the internet providers win!

Updates

I’ll probably come up with a static updates page on the home page for such things but, for now, this will suffice.

Today I finished putting up all the drabbles for my first drabble book, Coffee, Tea and More. If you have no idea what a drabble is, it’s a little story of just 100 words. Not an easy thing where every word has to count! These were written for the Livejournal community 30_beverages and each takes a new prompt from that community’s list–even though some prompts may seem repetitive. Some of them are also cross-prompted (a term I created) with the livejournal communities all_unwritten or fic_simplicity. Fun stuff, connecting ideas like that!

By the way, I’m keeping an eye on any sketchy traffic trying to hack this site and banning potential hackers with extreme prejudice. Consider yourselves warned.

Well, as much as I like Sunspot, it’s not working for me.

My menus keep disappearing for no reason that I can fathom, and since I’m a  total php noob (and a near total CSS noob as well), I’m going to look for something that will stick when I set up the menus. It also may make a decision I’ve been contemplating: whether or not to publish all my fanfiction here or just link to my fanfiction.net account. Any suggestions?

Beginning to get the hang of this theme thing

I’ve been quiet over the past months as I’ve worked on this site on and off. My goal is to shape this into my writer’s platform, using it to eventually promote my fantasy fiction–eventually being the operative word here. I’m going to replace my personal fanfiction site with this one, too. The original has served me well; unfortunately, my coding skills are not the best and it’s beginning to break down on the actual story pages. The one-shots and smaller chapter stories are already loaded here, as is the poetry. My drabble books are still to come as are the fanfiction novels. The latter will take some time as I’m trying to clean them up before posting; with The White Winds clocking in at 80 chapters and over 350K words, you can imagine this is going to take a while!

So far, I find Sunspot to be a visually appealing theme, so I’ll work with it for the time being. Hopefully I can get my daughter the graphic designer to work a little CSS magic and tweak it to my satisfaction.

I’m still debating whether or not to use this as a personal blog, too, as I have in the past. Many of my earlier posts deal with family as well as writing and I don’t plan on moving those offline. However, I have a family-oriented blog on WordPress.com as well as a livejournal where I can talk about the ins and outs of my personal life. Perhaps asking my writing friends would be a good idea.

In any case, consider this the first post of my writer’s platform! Welcome to my world!