Saturday, January 28, 2006

Synopsis edited

  1. I'm going to go back over everything again tomorrow, but the package should go out on Monday. Oops, no it will have to be Tuesday. Russ is going to be out of town on Monday, so we won't be going to the post office.

    I'm having a hard time believing that I actually got all of this done and ready to go off. I keep coming up with little things to add in, but they are truly small pieces, and things that I doubt would really be missed, though they do add a little bit to the story.

    Next step is a final read of the synopsis and then print, package and send.

    I have two more projects lined up right after it. One is a (hopefully) quick edit from the notes sent by the publisher. Then I have another book to do a quick edit on and send it off for a possible publication. I don't think it will take me very long either.

    I know it's not perfect. But you know... I still think it's a bood book! We'll see if I can get anyone else to agree. (grin)

    I better get back to work on some of the other things piling up here over the last few days. I might even get the 2YN stuff posted later tonight if I can get to work!

 Posted by Picasa

Friday, January 27, 2006

Kat Among the Pigeons is done!

Yes! The book is rewritten and edited, and the synopsis is even in the completed first draft. I'm not sure about the opening still, but I'll look at that tomorrow. I think I can cut it down a bit.

But... done!

I will go over it and the synopsis, do the final formatting, and I plan to have them out on Monday.

I really don't have much else to say tonight. I keep jumping back to the book and doing little bits on it. I've been just tied to this book for most of this week, with several over 10k days. Not hard work, since I was writing from an original, but still a lot of writing to do.

I am pleased. This is a good first step in my plans for this year -- to get novels out to places.

And now I'm going to go find some chocolate or something and celebrate. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Down to the last 100 or so pages

Kat Among the Pigeons is going to be done by the end of the month. And I am going to print the material off for a submission and send it. I will have the synopsis done as well, and it shouldn't be too difficult to edit.

I'm really amazed that I'm this close to having the novel ready to go out. My plans for 2006 seem to be working well.

I didn't add any new disks to the hard drive last night. Instead, I tried to get my office a bit cleaned up and get some other things done around the house. It worked... a little. Tonight I'm going back to work on the disks though. After I do more work on Kat.

You know, posting through Picasa, since I always ad a picture, is really kind of handy for me. (grin) Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Moving along....

This little picture is from my very first digital camera, a Sony FD7, with less than a megapixel in resolution. The good thing about the camera is that it was very fast. I love this foggy shot, heading over the bridge, which is illuminated by blue lights. People here call it our Smurf bridge.

I'm over the 300 page mark in Kat Among the Pigeons, but obviously running out of time. I might still make it by the end of the month.

I just finished the fourth sf class, and I'd already done the forth mystery class, so now I'm at the half way point. If I do a class every day, alternating between the two, I should have no trouble getting done. I might push ahead on the sf one and finish it first. I still don't have the books, but I've found the exercises pretty interesting anyway.

I'm copying the floppy disks from the FD91 over to the computer. That's going well enough, too. There are far too many of them! This really needs to get done, though. Several of the disks have developed bad spots already and I've lost pictures.

I can't wait to get out with the new camera!

Okay, time to get back to work. There's always more work to do! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

22,065 pictures

I've completed the CD1000 collection, at least in the first pass.

I also found a couple major problems with Kat Among the Pigeons that I think I've worked out. I'm closing in on 300 pages there, and I'm pretty happy with it so far. I'd like to have hope for it in the publishing world, but it's hard to keep thinking that about novel after novel, even when you really do think they're good.

We'll see. I'll have it done soon.

Right now I'm copying a cd that has all the old FD7 photos on it. This was the first digital camera I had, at less than a megapixal in power. They're small pictures, but many of them aren't bad. There are 2638 of them, though, so it's taking a while to copy off to the hard drive. From there I'll import them in to Picasa, sort them, and save them all off on a DVD. I think there will be enough room on the end of the one I'm doing for the last of the CD1000 pictures.

After this, the work will start getting tougher. I need to find all the disks for the FD91. The first 100 are copied off on a CD, so those won't be hard. After that.... I don't know.

And then I can move on to the print and slide stuff.

Maybe I should just go back to writing!

 Posted by Picasa

Sunday, January 22, 2006

PIcture 15480

The pictures I have been posting here the last few days are from my CD1000 collection. I've been using Picasa's 'Blog This' tool, and just letting it drop the picture into place. It's really kind of handy.

I love this picture. A waterfall of stuffed animals!

The news today is kind of funny. I picked this bit of information up from my favorite digital website:

This has to be the biggest and most shocking news before the upcoming PMA show, Konica Minolta has today announced that it is withdrawing from the camera and photo business. They will be transferring assets related to their camera business to Sony who will continue to develop digital SLR's based around the Konica Minolta lens mount. Konica Minolta it appears will continue to work with Sony (a relationship announced last year) in the development of digital SLR's and lenses but they will not be branded as or be sold by Konica Minolta.

Ha. So the company I really like is picking up the camera stuff I really wanted to buy, but couldn't afford at the time. And wasn't really sure about because... well, it wasn't the company I liked doing the digital stuff.

Okay. I can live with this.

I'm nearly done with the CD1000 pictures. After that I have a disk of FD7 pictures, and then a disk of the first 100 FD9 disks. Then hundreds more of those, but I won't be doing them all in a row like this set.

Kat Among the Pigeons is going very well right now. For a book I wrote in ten days, it's holding up pretty well. The rewrite has started moving smoothly again now that I got past a worrisome point that I couldn't quite work out for a couple days. I think it's all falling together very well, now.

I have the new camera up on the tripod now. It looks so small compared to the last one, but I've had some wonderful examples of how much more powerful it is. Amazing what they can do these days.

I guess it's time to get back to work, though.
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Saturday, January 21, 2006


First, I'm over 10,000 pictures. That's not really the 'eek' part, though.

Some of you will remember the camera I had been lusting after for several months before we bought the Sony. It was three times the price, but worked with the lens I have from my print cameras.

Today Konica Minolta announced that they will no longer be making cameras at all -- film or digital.

This is one of those moments where I don't know if I should be glad I haven't bought the digital body only yet or not. I love my Minolota cameras, and I really liked the 500mm mirror lens I have for them.

It might be that people will start dumping Minolta and Konica Minolta equipment on ebay and I can still pick up a body only for that set. Or it might be wiser to consider moving on to another system. The Canon is nice, but I don't like the lack of spot metering -- something I use a lot. Nikon is going almost completely to digital, but they have one of the heaviest digital bodies on the market. You add a couple hefty lens to that, and you're talking some serious weight.

Gah. Just when I wanted to look toward getting very serious about this stuff again.

I think I'll go write for a while. Posted by Picasa

Friday, January 20, 2006

Picture 8767

Yes, I'm still working away at this. I hope to make it to 10,000 tonight -- which will not be half way through the CD1000 sets, but I'm not sure how far short of the number. The earlier disks had far more pictures (at a lower quality) than the later ones. But sometimes I dropped the quality for special reasons -- fireworks, where it really wouldn't matter much, and stuff like that. I do know that with maybe one exception every disk should have at least 100 pictures on it, and usually closer to 200.

I'm on disk 40 out of something over 100. It's slow going in some ways, but....

But it is giving me time to think. And to do little odd writing things while sets of pictures copy to the hard drive -- and longer stretches as I copy huge groups off to the DVD burner.

When I'm done with the originals I'm boxing them up and storing them at the other house. Eventually I'll do a second run of labeling on them, too. Right now, for instance, I have all the cats just under a 'cats' listing. Later I'll merge the sets of 'cats' and sort again by cat name. Same with things like birds and such.

Eventually I might actually be able to find something.

You know, I've always been amused by our video collection, which has over 12,000 entries. This is just the CD1000 pictures. I might have nearly as many on the old FD91 and FD7 disks. And then there's the print and slide stuff.

It's going to be.... interesting.

Oh, and the new camera is lovely. I can't afford a Memory Stick for it yet, but once I do, the two of us are going to be really going places! (grin) Posted by Picasa

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Pip Picture

I have finally succumbed to Picasa. Wow. Nice program and it even has some lovely little editing tools. This picture of Pip turned out very well considering the original was not particulary great.

You can expect to see more pictures dropped in now and then. I'm sorting and saving (and taking a few new ones, of course -- grin). One of my goals for this year is to make some sort of sense out of at least some of the picture collection. It's gotten way too far out of hand, and if I ever want to find anything again, it's time to stop messing around. I plan to do some print scanning as well. I might as well get serious about tagging them all from the start. The colors on this new camera are incredible. Look at the red in that shot! My poor CD1000 had started having red-shift problems, but I could mostly correc them in post production work.

I really like this stuff.

Yes, I did work on Kat Among the Pigeons today, too. It's still up back there behind a few other windows, I think. You know, I think I'm going to find a nice couple short stories to edit and send off, and not push myself on Kat. I'm too excited about other stuff, and I found myself racing through the book today and yesterday. When I went back for the final edit on yesterday's stuff there were far more mistakes than there had been on previous stuff.

Well, we'll see. Maybe in a couple days I'll calm down enough about the photography to get back to work... but somehow I doubt it.

Time to go play some more....
 Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, January 18, 2006


The Old

And The New

Yes, we already did it. Russ came home early tonight and said we should do it then, while we had the money to buy the camera. We can get the extra stuff for it (like a memory stick and such) later. It has just enough built in memory to do about nine or ten pics at the full resolution, and that's enough to play around with here at home.

As you can tell, there's a huge difference in size. That's a 4 by 6 print picture behind the two cameras. Despite it being so much smaller, the new camera has as good a zoom (or maybe a little better) and is far more powerful than the CD1000. I'm going to look forward to taking it out and seriously playing with it.

I really can't wait for the first trip to the zoo!

I'm not unhappy about not getting the Konica Minolta that I had been looking at. This one is 1/3rd the price and really has a lot of the same features. I won't be carrying around heavy lens, either. I was looking at buying a wheeled suitcase for goign to the zoo. (grin)

I'm going to start up a new photo collection -- more than just zoo shots -- again. So far I've only done this:

This is going to be quite a distraction for a while!

Oh yes, I do like it a lot. There's quite a bit to learn with it, but so far I'm doing fine!

Monday, January 16, 2006

Changing my camera plans

There is no way that we can afford for me to buy a big fancy digital SLR this year. It's just not going to happen -- and my poor camera, despite moments of recovery, is still giving me troubles.

Tonight we hit on a new plan. We'll invest in a digital camera more akin to what I have (that is one that doesn't change lenses) and I'll use it for the next couple years while we get finances back in order. I've even already chosen the camera -- one that I looked at briefly right before I found out that Konica-Minolta had come out with a body only I could use with my old film equipment.

The new choice is a Sony 5.1 megapixel camera with a pretty good zoom lens -- not quite as good as the current camera, but really pretty nice. It has -- among many nice features -- a full manual setting, which I have really missed since going to digital, and some good mode choices. I held one today at a store, and it feels pretty good -- though small compared to my lovely Sony CD1000. It is about a third of the price of the other camera I have been looking at. I've been looking at reviews and sample pictures in several spots, and I have to admit that I'm really impressed.

And I can get it here in town. No one has the Konica-Minolta I want, which means I haven't even been able to hold one to see if I like the feel of it.

Part of this renewed interest in a camera has been prompted by something odd that has been happening. I've had several requests for the right to print pictures from my zoo collection in various publications. Another came today, and of a picture that I don't even think is one of my best -- but it is the only one I have of this particular animal. I realize that I might have a talent for this kind of photography, but using the poor old 2.1 megapixel CD1000 with the dying drive is just not going to work for much longer.

I might even be able to get this camera soon. Russ is expecting a good sized check in the mail in the next couple days. The guy even called Russ to say he sent it off, which means it isn't another case of us just thinking there's a check coming.

I'm kind of excited about this. Sure, it would be nice to get the other camera. But... I like this one. And it will allow me to stop holding my breath every time the current camera doesn't want to turn on properly and it takes me four or five tries before it catches.

The Omaha zoo is holding a photography contest, too. The pictures have to be taken between now and early next month. Wouldn't it be fun to go down and christen a new camera at the zoo?

I'm having a very hard time concentrating on anything else tonight. Good thing I already got some writing done!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Odd Moments of Vindication

In the last couple days I have found myself amused by some things. Most of them have to do with the Barnes and Noble classes I am taking -- the science fiction one and the mystery one. I think I'm going to enjoy both.

But what has amused me is reading things that I've been telling people to do (writing-wise) for a long time. They are things that I've learned down through the years, and try to pass on to others. Sometimes I've gotten flak over a couple of them... but now I see many of them in You can Write a Mystery by Gillian Roberts -- particularly in the Fifteen Commandments section -- and a couple points in the first pieces of material presented in the science fiction class.

It amused me. I am, obviously, very easily amused.

I've been working all day at trying to get caught up with various bits of work so that I can sit down with the class stuff. Unfortunately, now that I'm about caught up, I'm also tired. I may have to rethink this plan.

We are ten days into the year. I would like to say that I'm not behind... but I'd be lying about it. Still, I think things are going pretty well. I just have to get a little better organized.

And come up with ideas for the two classes....