Sorry, Dark Fate Later

Spent the morning in medical appointments (no, nothing serious, but due to various relatives dying this year, a lot of travel and other issues, I dropped everything on the floor re: follow up on the thingy in the brainy and so on.)

Today it was doctors in the springs, (an hour away.) We’re going to move our doctor, but honestly, not until some stuff that was halfway through is stabilized.  Also the doctor in Denver (neurologist) also takes us an hour, because — argh — Denver traffic.

I want to clean up and set up a tab for Dark Fate, then write next chapter, but obviously the morning was NOT conducive to this.  So I’ll try to have the next chapter for you soon, but it’s going to take a while and MIGHT be tomorrow morning.

Guardian is with Larry now, and we should be able to deliver it on time.

I’m trying to setup a “bible” for the Dyce books.  I did it sometime in August but the file has more or less vanished into thin air.  I can’t finish the fourth book (editing) till I have it on hand again.

The things I’m trying to get out this year, before the end of December, A Well-Inlaid Death (fourth Daring finds book), Royal Blood (2nd Vampire Musketeer book), The Musketeer’s Confessor (sixth Musketeer Mystery book), and if I can get it typed in, what will now be called Alien Curse, the first book of Worlds Mage.  Oh, also if I can finish it, Witch’s Daughter, the sequel to Witchfinder.  I also want to resume posting chapters of Rogue Magic.

That’s about it, but Dark Fate either today or tomorrow.  How soon depends on how soon I get home.  This is hard to do remotely on a little screen.

Possess your souls in patience!

76 thoughts on “Sorry, Dark Fate Later

  1. Today it was doctors in the springs

    As I get older I find there is greater need for doctors in the shocks. The engine still runs pretty well although the air filter is clogged more often than not, and the upholstery, while somewhat fuzzy and with more discoloration than when original is holding up pretty well. But the suspension is about shot and replacement parts are not O.E.M. and therefore only for desperate need.

    1. I saw a place with ‘Made in [YEAR]: All original parts’ shirts and wondered about ‘baby’ teeth and such. I’ve not had anything surgically/artificially replaced, but ‘wisdom’ teeth were removed. Amazingly, that’s all – so far, anyway.

      1. “All original parts” might simply mean that all (remaining) parts are original, no replacements. As milk teeth constitute a loaner awaiting upgrade as permanent issue come available that would comply with truth in advertising principles. Crowns would not be considered original but might be permissibly as minor repairs of parts damaged by long term wear.

        Your initial interpretation would not only reject replacement of baby teeth but would also reject any woman whose cycles have begun, as each would represent elimination of an original issue part.

        Anything ending in -ectomy would likely represent a diminution of original issued equipment.

        1. Aye, it’s all a matter of definitions and how tightly defined things are. If it’s no transplants (or other replacement: hip, knee) or *major* implants, then it’s fairly wide-open. But then what is a major implant? Stent? Heart valve? Pacemaker? Defibrillator?

          1. It’s the small parts that got me. The tooth was a crash repair, but the middle ear bone replacements, the new lenses and the fluid change in one eye made life interesting.

            1. Alright I have had some “drill & fill” though nowadays it’s more “grind & bind.” And, yes, that IS real progress.

              Of course, there are some simple pleasures in life:
              An empty bladder.
              A full stomach.
              A full fuel tank.
              A bored dentist.

        2. As my dad used to say, it’s not the age that kills you, but the wear and tear of the mileage that does you in. I can attest to that. I have most of the “original parts”, but they’re a lot worse for wear. I’ve also racked up some impressive mileage. . .

          1. I’ve sometimes wondered what Jackie Chan feels like when he gets up in the morning. A lot like Evel Kneivel did, I expect.

          2. *chuckle* Like the old joke.

            Doc: You have the knees of a fifty year old!

            Patient: I’m only thirty-five!

            Almost had that conversation word for word, some years back.

          1. Unless you have orthodontic crowns. That was an experience I do not care to repeat. They work, but oof, the process was rough.

  2. Dark Fate tomorrow, please. You’ve had a trying day (or your doctors have; whatever) and there’s enough here for the rapscallions to wreak their wonted mischief. Leave us something forward to look to.

      1. Hardly anybody plans it, but lots of things can possess an unwary soul. Most of em’ are recognizably human but things like anger, pride, and fear can do a decent job of taking over, at least temporarily.

      1. King James has that wording, but as early as the Revised Standard Version, (ca 1946) they dispossessed all the poetry from that verse.

  3. The things I’m trying to get out this year, before the end of December …

    “Lazy git.”

    Oops! Sorry. “Curve buster!”

  4. Sigh. Brain is guttering today. I read:

    Alien Curse, the first book of Worlds Mage.

    And edited it as Alien Curse, the first book of Menstrual Cycle. I think I need new glasses.

      1. I wish I could imbibe. Things would make far more sense then. But I never liked white wine, red wine triggers antihistamine response that produces a hangover before I get tiddly, much less snockered, and strong alcohol doesn’t thrill me at all because (being chronically underslept) I tend to nod off somewhere during the first glass.

        Thus I am rendered tea totaled, sober against my deepest wishes and condemned to drink only for humorous purposes, virtually for jesting.

        1. Things would make far more sense then.

          Actually, that is not the case. I claim NO great mental prowess, but even “well lubricated,” nonsense is still nonsense. The Give-A-[FRELL] needle just doesn’t deflect quite so far, is all.

        2. Some years back, when we were moving into this house, I realized that one of the possessions I had to deal with was a six pack from a case of beer I had bought six years previously. I had become a tea total largely by inertia.

          Once we were sorta settled, I tried to take it up again, for my heart’s sake. Then I got diagnosed with gout.

          So, I don’t drink. I don’t miss it all that much, really, but there are days when I could go for a nice hopsy beer.

          1. *grins* We have amassed a wonderful array of wines, meads, liqueurs, and harder liquors in our house, by same sheer inertia. As in, there’s a bottle of Calvados that Peter brought over from South Africa 14 years ago that we haven’t gotten to finishing.

            We like to do wine tasting tours and visit meaderies and distilleries. When we find something wonderful, we’ll get a bottle! But if we don’t get around to drinking it (and we don’t), then it…accumulates.

          2. In my mother’s fridge is a single can of Old Milwaukee that dates to the 1970’s. Uncle drank the other five, and that can has been there since. By now, it’ more museum piece than anything. Friend had to have a photo of him holding it while seated before an Apple //e as even when the //e was current, the label was outdated.

        3. They have doohickeys at the Expensive Cooking Utensils store that supposedly help remove the histamines and other problematic bits of wine. (I was just there today, and recall seeing them.)

  5. “Get some rest. If you haven’t got your health, then you haven’t got anything.”
    –Count Rugen

  6. As I keep asking my wife, “Patience? How long will that take?” And then she holds up her hand and walks away.

    1. MASTER: Tae Kwon Leap is not a path to a door, but a road leading forever towards the horizon.

      ED GRUBERMAN: So like, what, an hour or so?

      MASTER: No, no, we have not even begun upon the path. Ed Gruberman, you must learn patience.

      ED GRUBERMAN: Yeah yeah yeah, patience. How long will that take?

      MASTER: Time has no meaning. To a true student, a year is as a day.

      ED GRUBERMAN A YEAR?! I wanna beat people up right now! I got the pajamas! Yah yah yah hwoom!

      – from “Boot to the Head” by The Frantics

            1. I think I made some of those once? Confused the white pepper can with the powdered ginger can.

              Took a few incidents like that, but the family finally learned to accommodate my OCD about the organization of the spice shelf.

              1. Pepparkakor is a thing, actually; it’s the original name of Swedish gingerbread, because they used to put a bunch of cayenne pepper in it instead of a bunch of ginger. People still sometimes add a pinch of cayenne.

                Probably pretty tasty, if you put enough sugar in.

          1. The skits are on YouTube.

            Ed Gruberman is in “Boot to the Head” and “Army Careers.” Boot-to-the-Head also has a minor part in “Last Will and Temperament.”

            from “Army Careers”;

            Ed Gruberman: Look! Don’t you have any courses with guns?

            Recruiter: Well, yes. Last page.

            Ed Gruberman: “Intro to Ammo”? “Advanced Wounding”? “Creative Bazookas”?! Ooh, ooh! I’ll take all these!

            Recruiter: Fine. Uh, any mental diseases or physical deformities?

            Ed Gruberman: Okay, I’ll take paranoia, three nipples, and uh–

  7. Dumb question – What kinds of data need to be in a series ‘Bible’? I’m in the process of writing my first (a NaNoWriMo sci-fi novel), and have been making notes within Scrivener. I can see that having all that organized into one place would be helpful.

    1. Scrivener looks like a very powerful tool. It does everything I’ve thought a writer might need as far as information management.

      Back in ancient times writers used file cards or notebook paper to keep track of characters and diagram story progression.

      One advantage of keeping things mostly on paper is that once you have a fanbase, the paper becomes valuable. John Barnes (?) gathered up all of his notes, proposals, rejections, editorial comments, drafts, leftover pieces, etc., separated them by book, and auctioned them off to his fans. Not so easy to do with data files.

    2. Minor characters! There is nothing quite like trying to remember what name you gave that red-haired gossip four chapters later.

      1. also a list of whatever else I need. This usually reveals itself a third of the way through the manuscript, so I have to go back and wade through to list, say, what Fair Folk I have included.

        In my current not-quite NaNoWriMo, I’m taking notes on what fairy tales I used, in case I need to write a supplemental appendix. (Alas, I should have taken better notes in the longhand version, I’m trying to remember which fairy tale it was where the prince hunted a doe that was an enchanted princess.)

  8. I read somewhere that as an aid to memory, Rafael Sabatini kept a row of small dolls or figurines above his writing desk, labeled with the names of the characters in his current book. As he killed each one off, he would knock over the figurine for that character. It helped keep him from accidentally resurrecting someone.

    1. Yet now we have hypertext and even easy cheesy markup engines (search for “offline wiki editor”, for example) to make it user-friendly, but on the average quality of continuity editing did not improve, and often sank into sea of drool.

      1. That is similar to a common problem with business software. You have people doing a job. It takes a certain amount of work to complete a task. The software reduces the work, which would theoretically let them accomplish more.

        In practice, the software often takes up all the saved time, plus more, and productivity actually goes down, because “doing the job” isn’t their task any more; it’s now “running the software.”

        “Just because you can track everything, doesn’t mean you *should*.”

        If writing is your business, your job is shipping completed stories, not organizing notes and bits in Scrivener or whatever.

        You have to keep your eye on the ball. Feynman mentioned the same problem when he was working at Los Alamos – they were so short of time with their new electronic computer that they had rooms full of people with desk calculators taking some of the load off… but the guys who were supposed to be getting results from the computer were all “ooh, shiny!” and wanted to play with their new toy, and had to be continually reminded that their job was to keep pumping data through, not tweaking the software.

        It’s not to say that knowledge management software – the antique term for products like Scrivener – are bad, but that you need to keep track of actual *writing* vs. moving bits around in the timeline, editing character backstories, or whatever. The entire purpose of Scrivener is to make things like that easy… and it *does*. Which, if you don’t have the right mindset, becomes a distraction all in itself.

        1. It’s not as if you can’t get lost in worldbuilding with just a notebook too. You can screw up a part just as easily on a 5axis cnc as with a rasp and file. The difference is that the first one let’s you screw up more in a shorter time.

          As for software, I have run into a number of cases where I would rather just grab a drafting board than try and deal with the CAD. Stuff that could be defined on a napkin in 10 minutes has to be finessed because the cad is over precise. Anything not on paper plane is usually suspect.

      2. Dean Wesley Smith says, as a pantser, he will outline-in-reverse, especially on time-travel stories. All of his writing is generated by the subconscious, but once he’s finished a writing session for the day, he’ll go back and note outline-style who, when, where, did what, and if relevant, what they’re wearing/driving/other plot-pertinent details.

        This way, if he ever gets stuck, he can look back at the plot-so-far and go “Oh! I need to write about this guy next!” Or “Oh, I left him there, guess I need to get him out, now.” But it also works as a series bible, because then he can look back at notes of who, what, and when.

          1. Yeah, trying to find and assemble stickies in order years later…. *shudders in horror*

            Let’s not and say we didn’t?

          2. Notebooks. Many, many notebooks. After a usb drive got swallowed by a black hole… or a pond, or a possum, no clue which, I’ve been keeping notebooks. And files that get saved hither and yon.

            It’s the references that kill me. Remembering where I put the Reinhardt on swords, or that infrastructure in the 4th century book at, this I do not do so well on. I need to get proper shelving put up, and get all these boxes unpacked and organized. Someday. When I have the time.

            1. I bought this house that has a built in library. Now I need to have it expanded so it can take all my fiction too. But I have the references arranged by time they refer to, or weapons or such.

    2. It is obvious that Sabatini was born with a gift of laughter and a sense that the world was mad.
      If I could create my favorite writer, he/she would be the child of Rafael Sabatini and Dorothy Dunnett.

  9. Had a lady tell me once that “patience is a virtue”. Next thing I knew, she was living in El Paso with a husband and two kids. Haven’t been a big believer in patience since.

      1. I preferred the sopapillas there to those in Tucson. Where I live now, what they call sopapillas are little more that sweetened fried tortilla chips.

        1. I like Colombian food, which for some reason is a recent Dayton thing. It’s like Hispanic food, but with enough non-spicy meat and potatoes to keep my dad happy, as well as lots of stuff to keep off the cold. And not everything has corn in it, which keeps my mom’s allergies happy.

      2. Several years ago, a (Baja California?) family opened a taqueria in $LOCAL_BIG_TOWN. They’re wildly successful (good food, good prices and well located), and have expanded without losing their touch. I’m partial to the Machaca plate, while my wife loves the Adobada tacos. They’re one of the few places where we can eat safely (gluten issues for both of us), and this is our mainstay. I think their homemade salsas are still good, but the sous-chef occasionally uses flour as a thickener, and that’s pretty painful.

        Alas, they dropped Pozole on Wednesdays. If I’m in town then, I’ll go for the Adobada nacho chips.

  10. I come to you from Instapundit.

    How many pages do you publish a year?

    How many hours a week do you spend working? Writing? Re-writing? Researching?

    How does one find and pay editors and cover artists and so forth? Does that happen through a publisher?

    How can I contact you away from the blog?

    1. You probably want to head over to and start reading the archives there. There are multiple authors, including Sarah, who post at Mad Genius Club (usually on a weekly rotation of seven people, where each author posts one article per week), and they usually post about the craft of writing. Whereas this blog’s subjects are more “Whatever Sarah is thinking about at the moment”. She sometimes writes about writing here, but a lot more of her articles are about political subjects like how communism poisons the human soul, and so on.

      A good place to start at Mad Genius Club is to click on the “Navigating from Writing to Publication” link at the top of the page, and start reading through those articles. Then go back to one of those articles that’s older (e.g., one with 2012 in the URL) and start clicking the “next article” links at the top of each article, to scroll through the articles in chronological order. It’ll take a while to archive-binge the whole blog, but if you’re looking for writing advice, that’s a much better place to look than here,.

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