30 May

Easy and Safe Writing across Multiple Computers with Scrivener, Dropbox and Crashplan

Easy and Safe Writing across Multiple Computers with Scrivener, Dropbox and Crashplan

Easy and Safe Writing across Multiple Computers with Scrivener, Dropbox and CrashplanSome years ago I lost all of my writing in a hard drive crash. I’m not crying over spilled milk – the writing was rather horrible – but it did set me thinking about redundancy and safety. I started doing backups.

At first, I did backups to CDs. That worked all right, until I thought I had done a backup and formatted my hard drive. Of course, I didn’t have any CD with my latest stuff on it. And then, when my computer crashed and I had to reformat it, I lost a few months of work as well.

So instead of CDs, I started using an external drive to backup all of my files. Which worked fine, except that it’s a pain in the behind to hook it up all the time. And I didn’t want to leave it hooked up and out in the open because part of the reason of doing backups was to protect me in case my computer got stolen.

But, two years ago, I found my main backup and sync solution. And last month I found the perfect way to work across multiple platforms, multiple computers, in complete safety, without having to do anything. Read More

04 Apr

A Simple Guide to Writing Games

Writing Games

Writing GamesI’m a writer. I’m also a game designer, game player and game lover. And, folks, I hate what writers do to games – most writers simply don’t know how to write games.

Let’s take a prime example: Harry Potter’s Quiddich. Harry’s the Seeker of his team, meaning that if he catches the Golden (or Silver, if you’re a fan of the books) Snitch ball his team gains 150 points and instantly wins[note]OK, there’s a plot point in one of the later books where the Bulgarians are 160 points behind when they catch the Snitch and thus lose.[/note].

So what would this do to the game, if it was real? Since catching the Snitch is worth 150 times as much as scoring a goal, why is there only one guy (Harry) chasing it? Well, those are the rules. I buy that. There are plenty of dumber sports[note]Such as competitive cheese rolling. It’s real. And don’t make me mention chess boxing.[/note]. But why should the players at Hogwarts be written as dumb? Read More

04 Mar

Rejections and Dejections – February

Rejections and Dejections Graph

Rejections and Dejections GraphSince I came back to work in mid-February I’ve been cranking out texts, both work related and fiction. I think this is one of my most productive months to date, even though I only worked half a month. Sometimes it’s amazing to see what you manage when you’re rested.

My goals for the month have been to submit all the stories that I got rejections for when I was on vacation, and to finish a few stories that I had clogging my hard drive[note]No, that’s not an allusion to anything dirty.[/note]. I have to say that I managed to do marvelously. Also, I’m writing while sitting in a child’s recliner which pinches my butt[note]Because my butt is too broad, that’s what vacation will do to you.[/note] and having my computer on the sofa table, which is way too low, while workmen take my workroom apart and install an new wardrobe. Which won’t have anything writing related in it, or even anything cool. Unless you count my 15-year-old Speedos. Read More

07 Jan

Ghost of the Ashwydds – Published in Daily SF

Ghost of the Ashwydds

Ghost of the AshwyddsThe house was dark, spider webs covering the chandeliers where gaslight used to dance.

“Here,” said the no longer quite-so-young girl, “is the hall of the murder.”

The audience oohed and aahed and sighed, and when her lover flowed through the wall in his faded finery they screamed and ran, solidifying him with their belief while the girl stretched out her hand to caress what could not be touched. Read More

01 Jan

10 Martial Arts that Should Be Invented

Cutu-ryu: running with scissors

Cutu-ryu: running with scissorsTen totaly inventable* Martial Arts:
* That’s totally a real word.

  1. Plate-fu: the ancient art of hurling porcelain.
  2. Ori-jutsu: combat paper folding.
  3. Laseroka: the hidden art of network printer self defense.
  4. Four Eye Style: blinding your enemies with nerd humor and cutting remarks.
  5. Sokrato-ryu: the art of the damaging question.
  6. Peso-Oraltos: the Greek art of putting your foot in other people’s mouths.
  7. Rover Style: Irish combat bawling.
  8. Cutu-ryu: the art of running with scissors.
  9. Professorata: lecturing your enemies to death.
  10. Gelatonto: the Italian art of freezing remarks.

Got any of your own? Add them in the comments.