November 30, 2005

Picture Fun

Marion and Henry, the dynamic brother-sister duo!

Marion likes to nurse her babies!

November 28, 2005

Anybody Want One?

So, you may have read it, or you may not have, but if you're interested in owning a copy of The Sebastian Campaign, I'd like to know.

The more copies we can pre-order, the cheaper they'll be individually. Here's an estimate, not counting any for myself, and not including shipping to you if you need that:

2 copies - $15 each
4 copies - $11 each
8 copies - $ 9 each *** 7 copies ordered so far ***
10 copies - $ 8 each
16 copies - $ 7 each

I'm expecting that only about 10 copies will be wanted, so they'll probably cost about $8. If you'd like a copy (or two), email me jlee (at) openappledumb (dot) com. Let me know how many you want, and I'll get back to you about the cost in the very near future. I'd like to get them printed soon, but I don't have a date yet for a preorder deadline.

They will be available after the pre-order, but they'll cost more (probably $15 each) and there won't be a bulk discount.

November 26, 2005

It's Done!

50,185 words.

It's over, it's done, and I did it. Wow.

Almost There

I am currently 1637 words from my 50,000 word goal. It looks like my book is going to finish up very close to the 50K mark, which is great.

I'm not going to post any more of the book until I finish it up, because I want the end to have the continuity that I think will help it flow better. So, for all of you that are reading the book as I'm writing it (thank you, first of all, let me know what you think), it will be done very soon, probably today. Check back later.

November 25, 2005

Novel Switcheroo

For those of you that have been paying attention, you've noticed that the novel is almost done (somewhere around 92% today). If you've read all the way to the end, you may want to go back a couple sections and re-read, as I've completely changed the order of the last part of the book...and I think I added more text in there too. Chapter 6 and beyond has been rearranged, so you might want to scan through it to get an idea of where we are.

So, with just under 4,000 words to go, I'm feeling pretty darn good. It's possible that I'll finish today, but I'm setting my goal for a finish tomorrow. After that I'm doing a quick read-through with some minor editing, and then we're setting it up to be available for printing online. If you want an actual pysical copy of the book, nicely printed in softcover, you'll get your wish for about $15 (I'm looking for other places that might be able to do it cheaper).

I've had a great time so far, and I'm looking forward to having this done. Thanks for stickin' around while I'm busy writing.

November 22, 2005


Distracted, me? No, I'm not distracted.

November 21, 2005

Teaching Guitar

I dreamt last night that I was teaching Rick Moody (author of The Ice Storm and most recently The Diviners) and Mike McMahon (current starting quarterback of the Philidelphia Eagles because the starter was injured, and former Detroit Lion) how to play guitar.

Very strange.

November 20, 2005

The End is in Sight

I hit 30,000 words in my novel last night, and this morning I wrote out a preliminary plan for where the rest of the book was going. I'm hoping that this plan won't interfere with the natural flow of the story, because I didn't have a plan for the fist 60% of the book and it's worked out quite well. Hopefully this will only help me move along at a good pace.

Only 20,000 more words, no problem, I can do that. Only 1784 words per day, no problem.

November 17, 2005

Is it that TIme Already?

It's snowing. It snowed yesterday a bit, but it's actually snowing today. Real flakes, real crazy white snowflakes. I'm not sure I'm ready for it to be this cold yet. I spent a lot of time outside with Marion and Henry over the summer, and I'm not sure what I'll replace that time with. We can go outside some of the time, but we can't stay out for long, or they'll freeze their little noses off.

November 15, 2005

The Rewards Come In

It's true that parenting is tough. It's a hard job, as hard as everyone says, even if no one is listening. It's just not possible for non-parents to understand (or at least it wasn't for me), so I suppose we should just stop trying.

I have the most trouble keeping my cool when the kid-lees are sleepy and upset, but they're not going to (or staying) asleep. I don't know why this is my hardest time, but it certainly is.

Today Marion woke up early from her nap, and I hadn't got Henry to sleep yet. So I had to go upstairs to try to get her back to sleep while he was chatting...which makes it hard for Marion to fall asleep. I switched plans, and got him to sleep, but by the time that happened she wasn't going to go back to sleep.

So, now they're both up, and Marion is going to have a rough evening, because she'll be sleepy still. Bah. Nothing could be done about it, I just have to accept it, and I did better today, so that's good.

But to get to the rewards...

Henry is in pre-crawl mode. He's starting to get up on his hands and knees when he's on his tummy, and that's pretty exciting. I can't believe it's that time already. Wasn't he just born? Isn't he the baby?

Marion has recently been 'nursing' her doll a lot (gotta help that baby grow), and she's long been carrying it around in her sling. She has a new trick with her baby now, which she just did for the first time a few minutes ago.

She took her doll over to the potty and held it there for a moment. I asked her if she was pottying her baby, and she gave me the potty hand sign. How cool is that, she's teaching her doll how to use the potty?

Sweet rewards.

November 14, 2005

To the Zoo - With Friends!

November 11, 2005

Everything Changes

We've known that it was coming, things were turning up, and messing up, and looking ugly. It happened yesterday.

The hard drive, our main hard drive on our main computer, failed. It's actually the first hard disk that I've had fail in all of my computing days. The computer wouldn't start up, and I needed help. I talked to Ben, and he gave me some ideas, but ideas weren't working, I needed some files that he had, and I didn't.

So, the babes and I took a trip to Ben's workplace. It's an impressive building, and we were all very happy with the tour, thanks Ben!

Then, we bought a new hard drive (Best Buy, 120GB, $30 after rebates).

I took it home, and started working on it. All went pretty well, and the computer is nearly fully functional again. But, the lack of computer slowed things down. Keleigh had to shift what she was working on, and I had to take time away from writing my novel to get the computer going again.

I did get some writing in, but I didn't make it to my goal for the night. I'll really need to buckle down if I'm going to get back on track. I feel like I need to get back on track, because I'm worried that if I fall behind for too long I'll give up, and I don't want to do that. I'm in this for the long haul, and I'm going to finish this book.

The novel has been backed up, so no worries. Everything important seems to have been saved too, so the computer troubles didn't add up to much more than time lost (and $30).

November 09, 2005

Internet Explorer Hurts Your Brain

It has come to my attention that the Microsoft Internet Explorer browser is doing something crazy to the left side of my page. If you're using Explorer, you're not getting everything. I would suggest using Firefox, which is a super nifty browser that beats the poop out of Explorer. Better spyware protection, less crashing, better privacy. All good things.

So, because Explorer is crapping up your viewing experience, I've added another link to the page, where you can find the latest version of my novel. The working title is no longer Ravel with Trolley (which didn't really mean a thing to the novel), to The Sebastian Campaign, which does. Read on, with the link over to the left.

November 07, 2005

Brain Chasm

All of the words that I'm able to write are being channeled into the novel (updated link to the left). I'm getting excited about having this many words done so far. I'm on pace to reach 50,000, as long as I keep writing something like 1738 words a day. I can do it.

So, expect a few less posts than normal, because I'll be writing the novel until the end of November. Please feel free to leave any comments you wish about the novel, I look forward to reading them. I might post some excepts from it as things go on, because that'll be more digestable for most readers.

This past saturday I had the chance to attend the U*Con Gaming Convention, which was loads of fun. I played a couple games that I've never played before (Domaine, which was quite good), and Santiago (which was okay, but nothing special), as well as an old faborite. I also got to play Diplomacy (with just four players), which was -great-. Everyone had played before, and we had a really good time, even though it was only four players instead of seven.

November 06, 2005

Where's the Novel?

I'm gonna keep the latest version of the novel in the link over to the left, just under the NaNoWriMo icon. Please let me know what you think, you don't even have to read the whole thing if you don't have time.

This way, I don't have to keep posting little short things that say, "New novel stuff here."

In a related note, you really want to buy me the "I'm a lover not a writer." or "Glowing Runner" t-shirt for Christmas.

November 04, 2005

NaNoWriMo Update

I'm two days into actually writing a novel, and it's going pretty well. Today was definately trickier than yesterday, but I got it all in. I'm on pace for 50,000 words by the end of the month, and that's the goal. At 3,636 I'm seven percent of the way through the novel. Not bad, eh?

You can download the most updated version here. It's no longer in .txt format (it's a .doc) so you should just be able to click on the link and it'll bring up Microsoft Word, or some similar program. If it doesn't work, let me know and I'll email you a copy.

I'd really like to hear what you think about this. I know it's not going to be very good (writing in this event gives you the freedom to write without worrying about quality, and that's a good thing, because it gives you the freedom to write), but I do hope you can find something that you enjoy about it.

November 03, 2005


If you're here before this post makes a lot of sense, accept my apologies, I haven't had time to get everything together. I did, however, want to get this posted.

I'm going to try my hand at NaNoWriMo (which is short for National Novel Writing Month). In November, you write and write and write, and get 50,000 words in before the end of the month. I'm giving it a try.

I'll have a blog specifically for novel updates, but right now you can read the first two sections here. You'll want to right click and save the file, because it's just text, so it's ugly in a browser. Open it up in Word, or notepad, or whatever.

You can read more about NaNoWriMo at their website, and you can check out my author page too, actually, you might want to read the first part of the novel there, as it's formatted better on that page.

November 02, 2005

Change of Address

OpenAppleDumb, while cute (to me at least), doesn't really mean anything to most people. It's been my web-identity since I switched over from (or was it, I forget) in early 2003. I believe I officially started posting on OpenAppleDumb in April of 2003, which means that I've been at this for well over two years now.

The page, as you currently see it, has been just about the same since October of 2004, when I switched over to using to more easily post. Before that I was doing updates in html every day, and doing too much busy-work to keep things moving. Blogger has been great for making things easier to post, so that's been great.

The change, the big change, is going to leave behind OpenAppleDumb (which will change my email address as well). I like the name, I really do, but it doesn't fit anymore. I need something more daddy-ish, and more understandable. That's where we're headed.

I own this name until somewhere in January (I believe), and I'll make sure to put up a link to the new name once I know what it is. You'll have a few months to update your bookmarks, or you'll be left behind, because will go dead sometime in January.

I'm thinking of making the new blog a tad more secure, by not using full names, not mentioning where we live specifically, and just generally being more careful with information. Marion will be M-, Henry will be H-, Keleigh will be K-, and so forth. Everyone who's been reading will know who I'm talking about, and new people will know too, they just won't know the full names. We live in Michigan, or maybe south-east Michigan.

Hopefully I can move on this within the month, as it's on a limited time schedule. Wish me luck, boys and girls.