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Dog Days Diary

July 17, 2013

Blog Time! Woohoo!

Ups and downs this week:

Finally figured out why my PC will shut itself off for no apparent reason when in the midst of a CPU-heavy activity (not naming names here). Mind you, this is after I replaced a graphics card and a power supply…

The bracket that held the heatsink to the CPU had a cracked bit of plastic. Basically, even though the fan/heatsink complex appeared to the naked eye to be where it needed to be, it wasn’t really tight against the CPU, which was hitting 100 C and throwing in the virtual towel. Of course, you can’t buy one of the little brackets. So I bought a Cooler Master sink and fan with about a pound of copper attached to a half a pound of aluminum and METAL FREAKIN’ BRACKETS because I hate when a thirty cent part can take down my system like that.

Whew. Angst relieved. And is there anything slimier than thermal paste? Rhetorical question, don’t share.

On the writing front: 750words.com works pretty darn well. It’s interesting how little of a nudge one needs to get the words down every day. It’s not like I get a prize beyond a facsimile of one of those stickers my son saw a lot of in second grade, or I feel some responsibility to the other writers. I just get a reminder, and I do it.

This resulted in over 6000 words (third draft quality) in seven days. Well, there may have been other factors–it’s a critical transition in the story which I’ve been playing with in my head for months. Having the shape of the thing ready saved some time, I’m sure. I do think there’s some synergy, though, in getting into a groove. Writing more eventually means you write better, faster. I say *eventually* because I suspect there’s a critical threshold where the process starts to click for most folks (if it’s going to click at all). The threshold probably has something to do with having enough practice with enough of the right tools from the writer’s bench (logic, grammar and rhetoric) to allow fairly decent self-expression the first time you want to say something.

After that it’s a matter of getting the tics out of your swing, as it were.

Odds and ends:

Cucumber slices in gin and tonics. I’d heard rumors. They’re all true. Especially for citrus-dominant tonics like Fentiman’s, where lime or lemon would be gilding the lily, a cucumber slice adds a more subtle, not quite sweet flavor and aroma. That I was forced into this circumstance by a total lack of citrus fruit in the house is completely irrelevant.

Still in the preliminary planning stages for the Archon social events. Definitely having one party. Probably Saturday night, probably with absinthe, maybe with invitations (but not by invitation, if that makes any sense). My current internal (and now external) debate centers on the marketing stuff for the anthology Untreed Reads will have out by then, and all the assorted shorts local writers I know have with them. A poster with QR codes, blurbs and (where applicable) cover art? We’re really not supposed to be selling things outside the vendor area, but there’s no money changing hands and no objects being handed over with ebooks from a website. I should probably double check; I don’t want to annoy TPTB.

For the Friday night, perhaps something more low key…open house-y even. Something where we can circulate to other things (as opposed to playing host). I need to pick the brains of the other writers involved. And decide whether to get a second room to, you know, sleep in.

Even odder (and there’s an oxymoron for you)–

Watched Despicable Me 2 with the family Sunday night. I was reminded how much I love the Hi-Pointe Theater, even for meh movies. Popcorn and a Schafly’s did much to salvage the movie, which was…not intense. The first one at least had a sense of momentum, and even some conflict–this one was flabby, a series of hit-or-miss gags, with no tension to speak of. And minions. Good lord, I can’t be the only person who finds them more annoying than funny nine times out of ten, and they practically built the movie around the minion gags (and a sequence that could easily have been a video game excerpt…not a trailer…actual game play).

Summer’s more than half gone and I still haven’t seen a good summer movie. Man of Steel was too loud and explosive (though I hope against hope they take the cast and the characters they have and come up with something like a real Lex Luthor story). Monsters University was decent, but predictable–the rapport between Goodman and Crystal kept it this side of mediocre. Not down at the level of Cars 2, but probably around the original Cars.

Of course, I didn’t get to see the Star Trek or Iron Man franchises. I only saw the Supes flick because I took a half day off for my birthday.

*checks listings* Turbo. Blech. I’ll wait for fall…though I’m still hoping to catch Joss Whedon’s As You Like It, probably the week my son is off at camp. Maybe I can find Iron Man and Star Trek at a dollar show too…

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Valerie permalink
    July 18, 2013 9:24 am

    gin and tonic – try a dill pickle as garnish

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