Well, it's only half-way through January, and here I am writing my first blog post of the year. Even assuming that I took most of December off for holidays, this is a little late in coming. The really sad thing is that I intended my original post to be a resolution to be more consistent and attentive to this blog, and my writings in general. Guess it is safe to say I blew that one. I'm still planning to try.
I also haven't updated the website in quite some time. I suppose it is time that you are due an explanation for that, at least in part. Back before Thanksgiving, my laptop was stolen. Fortunately, I didn't lose too much, because I keep most of my work "in the cloud" and on a flash drive, which was not stolen. (Let's not talk about how that same flash drive recently did a backwards somersault is now in traction. I don't think he'll recover.) I did lose the marvelous mindmapping program called FreeMind, where I had quite a bit of the characterization and plot details for Hero Games.
In the wake of this disaster, we evaluated our situation: we had lost two laptops and a Wii gaming system, complete with a dozen games and various controllers, etc. These were significant losses, though we were, of course, thankful that this was all we had lost. It was only (mostly) property, afterall, and even most of our documents were safely in Google Docs, or otherwise kept online. However, this was a lot to replace all at once. My wife needs a computer. She's a computer engineer and not having a computer at hand is like holding her breath... under water... with man-eating, hungry sharks swimming around... watching one of her fins floating down, into the murky depths of the ocean, never to be seen again... while the glistening, bobbing surface above her darkens with the arrival of ten-mile wide spaceships, full of aliens bent on galactic domination who have spoken with an ancient cult of star-charters that have chosen her as the key element in the coming war between... -you get the picture: my wife needs to have a computer. We could really only afford to replace one of the three major items. We put off the Wii, and I elected to wait to get a computer, allowing my wife to get a fairly nice model that will keep her happy until the next time we upgrade computers.
My district is wonderful enough to allow me to take my school laptop home and use it for casual personal purposes. So, I have a computer of my own, at home, too. Mostly. The district has also been sending out lots of little messages and subtle hints about "misuse and abuse of district equipment." The bloody-horsehead-in-the-bed screensaver was a bit much, guys. So, while I am content surfing the web and doing my writing in the cloud through my school laptop, downloading programs or storing lots of personal files (like website pages) made me a little nervous. So, I haven't been updating or working on the website, and I haven't touched Hero Games, though I did continue to write the short stories I was working on for NaNoWriMo.
However, I now have a nice flash drive from the school, so I can use that for school things, and my wonderful wife was given a flash drive as part of a conference she went to that she doesn't need, so is giving that to me, and I have decided to make that one be for writing. It will be a backup copy of the writings, and a way to work on the website through the school computer, without actually loading anything onto it. Happy medium discovered. :)
And yeah, I'm trying to trim the waistline, lose weight, and get in shape. All that standard January 1st stuff. The Wii Fit says I'm doing a good job! (Her parents got us a new Wii for Christmas, and part of my parents' gift to me was the Wii Fit Plus game to replace the one that was stolen.)
So, look forward to a new Nanite Chaser story on the site, as soon as I get everything set up and organized! Happy New Year everyone, a little late.
Brian Aldiss, 1925-2017
3 hours ago