Tag Archives: blogging

Time Travel of Sorts

Finally! A combined WIPpet and ROW80 post… Only took a few weeks!
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I seem to be traveling backwards for these WIPpet posts. It sort of makes sense… I don’t usually write in a linear fashion. But to post out-of-order two weeks in a row feels odd. Still, here we are…  I’m taking y’all back even further in the Unnamed Story.

No fancy maths today.  It’s JuNoWrimo, and my head is toast.  Eight little paragraphs for the 8th of June.  Hope you enjoy…

Vant didn’t bother inputting his passcode in the keypad when he reached the basement.  Like as not he’d be leaving with ‘Listii Mirniia in a few minutes.  No sense in resetting the locks for that.

Opening the door, he reassessed that decision and quietly backed away to key-in his id number.

Mother, what did you do to him?

Grimly, he reentered the room to gaze over the scene, broken only by the fact that his presence had been noticed by the pair on the floor.

‘Listii Mirniia eased from the woman’s arms to grab up the towel on the floor next to him.

The woman in question moved slightly to a defensive pose that shielded the man next to her.  “Vant?”  Even her questioning tone held a hint of caution as if to warn him away.

Vant held back his smile.  Oh, Mother, how so-very Wanderer of you….

Behind her, his uncle placed a gentle hand on her shoulder.  “It’s alright, Atyr.  He’s involved too.”

Caught in the act…  but of what?  I’ll wager it’s not what you think.

If you enjoyed that, you may want to head over to the WIPpet linky and visit some our other creative members. Yummy Biscoff cookies and a spicy Vanilla Chai to the multi-talented Emily Witt for hosting the WIPpet Wednesday bloghop these days.


ROW80LogocopyNow, I’ve got a mini check-in for all of you keeping tabs or following the Round of Words in 80 Days writing challenge.  If you aren’t and you’d like to know more, would like increased accountability, or would just like some companionship during your writing journey, click to see if The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life might work for you.

As for me…  Life is firing on all cylinders except that dear *cough cough* Goal #1 (to read/study a craft book).  Does the time I spent reading up on how to create the perfect villain (via Jim Butcher’s old Livejournal) and Marcy Kennedy’s ever-so-helpful lists from her Busy Writers Series of craft books count?

Just Write

If so, then I’m (still!) rocking this week.  I’ve managed over 18K for my JuNoWriMo project since last Wednesday; I’ve drafts of both the JuNo Pep Talk I was asked to write and my next ROW80 sponsor post done; and I’m still finding a small amount of “me time” reading. Tuesday, I thought I’d lose momentum (serious head hurt), but I pulled most of the day through with a mid-day nap. Sometimes I see the great word counts of others in the JuNo and feel a bit down (people who are writing those 5K days regularly impress the heck out of me), but it’s what it is.

This weekend is the New York Capital District Renaissance Festival.  We’re thinking of going here at Chez Mabee (the Boodle really wants to go).  It’s also the Self-Publishing workshop by Audra North at our local RWA chapter meeting.

Decisions, decisions…

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Sometimes Little Things are Big

markdownHave you ever heard of Markdown?  No, it has nothing to do with the latest special at Kohls.  It’s a special coding system for typing webpages and documents online

I use it daily, though I never learned all the keystrokes.  Maybe you do too without even knowing you do.  If you’re like me and use 750words.com for your brainstorming sessions or have a WordPress.com blog, you have Markdown either available or build in.

The design counts for a lot of the Word auto-correct options too.  Scrivener calls the pieces it uses as “substitutions”.  It’s why : + – + ) becomes a 🙂

Little things: like *this* is the same as <em>this</em> (which for Blogger people is <i>this</i>) …  and they all equal this.

Most websites allow a certain amount of Markdown or some kind of Markup language to make things easier on their users.

Why would anyone want to do this?  Well, it makes it easy to just…  TYPE.  I  mean, HTML is useful enough, but a lot of the tags (those things between the <> characters) are already being removed from normal use.  Even the ones we use every day in our blog comments…  That <strong> tag to bold your text?  It has been deprecated right along with the simpler <b>.   Granted, basic HTML tags like those are nice because you can just type what you want in web editor and a machine (or person) anywhere around the world can understand the format of your text  (maybe not the words—you are still responsible for those).  That is a handy superpower to have, if you ask me.

Knowing some (even a little) Markdown is the same.  You may not agree, but someday, try doing a webpage on your phone (I have).  Suddenly I can walk again…

If you’d like to learn how WordPress (at least) uses Markdown, here is their quick reference.  A quick Google search will help you elsewhere.

Row80 check-in

Yesterday was the first day of JuNoWriMo, and of course, in all the Kick-off craziness, I ‘chose’ not to post my check-in with my most recent WIPpet as I’d planned on Sunday.  (I say ‘chose’ because I did… at the very last-minute when I looked at the furby pic I’d added to the post and couldn’t bring myself to add in another word.)

ROW80LogocopyThat said…  it was a pretty awesome day.  I closed out my writing with a bit over 3500 words (I posted a smaller tally, but then had inspiration to add just a few more).  I have to update our crew spreadsheet, but how can I complain about that for a day’s progress?  Especially a day that included a trip to DMV*, swimming with the hubby and other happy family time!  I didn’t even stay up super late (I was tired), but I got almost everything done I’d planned for the day.

The almost was this post of course.  It would have been nice to not have this waiting for me this morning.  But…  oh, well.  Not every day turns out perfect.

As for the rest of my goals–they’re moving along (except my imfamous Goal #1).  Yesterday during the trip to DMV, I got some quality reading time in Letters to Alice by Fay Weldon.  It’s a bit of a commentary on creativity and a warning to the aspiring author.  It’s all fun.

It was definitely a nice shift from the madness of Tuesday when I did All The Things JuNoWriMo.  I still have some serious setup to do on the website (*shudders*).  The mainblog page especially, which doesn’t actually show the blog posts, just a blank screen (except for a ticker of recent posts on the side).  Some research will be involved here, since I’ve not dealt with WordPress.org design much.  Nothing I cannot handle, I’m sure—just time I don’t have right now.

And that’s it for me.  Hope you had an awesome couple of days writing.  See you Sunday!

* My father calls them “Damned Motor Vehicles”; I bet a lot of people do.

What Do You Use?

I like fonts.  I even started designing my own font back in the 90s when it involved a lot more paper, rulers, and scaling of measurements.

If your favorite isn’t on the list, add it to the comments

So, of course, I just had to repost this when I saw it (thanks to Dom Carter at Creative Bloq for his post: What Your Font Choice Says About You).

Maybe it makes me look like a fuddy-duddy,but I use Garamond Antiqua for anything and everything I print up and make notes on at home.  It’s a mono-spaced font much like Courier, but with a more pleasant feel of real “book” text.  The Garamond you normally see in Word and other wordprocessing programs is not mono-spaced, but unless I plan on doing a lot of printing, I usually don’t install Antiqua these days (the font license was for a particular machine and I don’t have it anymore) For most on screen work, the basic Windows installed Garamond works “okay” enough, but I wouldn’t want to try publishing anything with it.

That’s my “work font”.  I also have my play font, which wasn’t on this list.  The closest to my 750words font (Sharktooth) they have here is a cross between Bradley Hand ITC and Rage Italic.  And it weighs more heavily toward the Bradley Hand…  Yeah.  I could definitely wish for more font choices there for my brainstorming sessions.

Maybe that’s why I still spend so much time with pen and paper despite thirty plus years of geeking on a keyboard.

And you…  What are your fonts of choice?  Do you have a specific style for specific types of work that helps you get things done?  Let me know in the comments.

Now it’s time to move on to my….

Row80 Check-in & Weekly Assessment

First a smallish apology to anyone who might have expected a video of my son’s Monday recital.  It’s been an odd couple of days, and I forgot to load the video up to Youtube.  Next week..  since I will likely be doing my WIPpet with my check-in this coming Wednesday.

That, btw, counts as the first bit of happy news for this week’s goal assessment.  I participated in the WIPpet bloghop this week (WIPpet stands for WIP, or Work in Progress, snippet, and involves a group of creative writers sharing pieces of a story they are working on for the sheer fun of it).  If you’d like to be involved too, check out some of our posts at our linky and jump in this Wednesday.

ROW80LogocopyWhen I count that little bonus plus a creative bursts of Wednesday and Thursday (artwork and a post about birds), this week has gone above and beyond my expectations.  I have made great strides in prep for JuNoWriMo, getting most of the Featured Author posts uploaded and edited.  The Pep Talk post isn’t finished yet, but I have most of my first draft done.

The Boodle and I even found time for a grand adventure with a few of the Burton Bunch, swimming and dinner out, on Friday.

So, despite the continued failure to reach Goal #1, I call this week the best of the ROWnd yet.  May the progress continue!

As for the specifics.

  • Goal (#1): working through three chapters weekly of James Scott Bell’s Plot & Structure (including exercises)
  • Progress: nothing, nada, lots of other reading, but nothing on my craft books.
  • Not-progress, but… I did find and spend a lot of writing craft time at Mythcreants
  • Goal: catching up in my local critique group (including submitting something this week)
  • Progress: Nothing new to submit, but I’m just a quick skim over the crits I did before being caught up
  • Goal: typing two pages a day of old notebooks in
  • Progress: on track
  • Goal: (VIG) Write new words daily! (the Five Sentences thingie)
  • Progress:  on track, well, except for Thursday…  that was an odd day of daydreamy character time and very little handwritten work (though I did write a lot on Thursday too, just not by hand)
  • Not a Goal but Progress Anyway: continued progress  my languages (except Spanish), and of course, all that JuNoWrMo progress.

Tomorrow will be setting up prompts for my JuNoWriMo sprints so I can be ready for the Wednesday Kick-off and writing the kick-off post (just a short one).  And of course, Memorial Day Parades…  it’s supposed to be rainy, but then Nature has always had a complex relationship with soldiers and remembrance celebrations for them.

Faded Glory