News1/9/17: Made the official "Goodbye Podler Blog" announcement today.
12/30/16: I reviewed Christian Ellingsen's The Silver Mask, book one of The Vasini Chronicles over on the New Podler blog. It starts out as a murder mystery full of political intrigue, but it's set on some mirror Earth in a time of flintlocks and alchemy. Recommended.
Another year draws to a close. I made progress on Gateway, obviously not enough to finish. That has to be a goal for 2017. To help achieve it, I'm winding down the Podler blog. I've spent way too much time promoting the writing careers of others at the expense of my own. There's only so many hours in the day. Since none of my other blogmates has the time to take over the management of the blog, I've no other recourse but to shut it down. Formal announcement to come in January on the Podler blog.
Bottled the "Black Moon IPA" (black IPA) and my annual batch of "DED of Winter Ale" (porter). Hope to sample them on New Year's Eve.
Played D&D for the first time with my kids yesterday. It was fun. My son was reluctant, but my daughter has been asking for a while now. We were going to play 1st edition (yeah, I'm that old school), but I'd picked up the 3rd edition Player's Handbook several years ago and the kids seem to be more into that. Which adventure did we start with? Why, Keep on the Borderlands of course.
11/22/16: I reviewed L. Marshall James's Speck over on the New Podler blog. It's a horror thriller that could've been a novel but was abandoned at novella length.
Worked some more on Gateway last week. I can feel the gears start to move. Have to stick with it.
Started brewing an experimental batch: Black IPA or Cascadian Dark Ale or black ale. I don't know if the brewing community has come to a consensus on the genre name yet. O.G. 1.064. Might be a bit high. It's a 1-gallon batch so it's easy to overdo it on ingredients.
11/16/16: I reviewed Damian Bruce's The Interview over on the New Podler blog. It's a good dystopian thriller with a lousy cover.
Finally had a chance to wade back into Gateway last night. While I have notes, I really have to soak in it for a while to drive the story forward. I think it's 1/3 of the way there, so I've got a lot of gaps to fill.
Started brewing my annual winter porter on Monday. O.G. 1.070!
10/21/16: I reviewed Charles Blanchard's Kingdom's End over on the New Podler blog. Think of it as Watership Down for rats.
There was a hiccup on the Blogger servers at the end of September, resulting in the deletion of our blogrolls and book review link lists. Fortunately I found an archived version of the blog, so I was able to copy all of those links to a safe place. Took me three weeks to squeeze in the time to re-enter them though.
Finished the new front walkway project. Rented a log splitter to finish splitting the wood. Lots of gnarley, twisted pieces. Small tasks remain, and then...oh my goodness, I think I might have time to write. Something bad must be about to happen.
10/3/16: I reviewed R.A. Burg's The Human and the Hunted over on the New Podler blog. It's a first contact story with not one but two aliens.
Still working on the new front walkway project. Soooo close to being done. After that, I have to finish splitting wood. Somewhere along the way, I lost September so I really have to get a move on.
One tidbit of good news regarding my editing. Rob Steiner's Citizen Magus got five stars over at Marian L. Thorpe's blog (Yay Rob!). Towards the bottom of the review, there was this tidbit, which made me smile.
"At this point in a review, I usually discuss my 'niggles': things that weren’t quite right. With the exception of one error missed in the copy-editing (an 'it's' used when 'its' should have been) I found no errors of grammar, spelling or production in the e-pub version I read, for which the author and his editor should be commended."
8/30/16: I reviewed M.L. Kennedy's 100 by 100 over on the New Podler blog. Kennedy uses only 100 words to tell each of the 100 stories in this collection. It might seem like just a gimmick, but Kennedy is clever enough to pull it off.
Kids go back to school tomorrow so I should be able to find time to return to writing. Have to finish the new front walkway project first.
8/10/16: I reviewed Brady Koch's Guns, Gods & Robots over on the New Podler blog. It's a nice collection of short stories with a bit of a Bradbury-ish sci-fi flavor.
7/14/16: I reviewed Scott Rhine's Union of Souls over on the New Podler blog. It's the third book in Rhine's space opera series, Gigaparsec, and the best to date.
6/20/16: Happy Summer Solstice!
I reviewed Richard Abbott's Far from the Spaceports over on the New Podler blog. It was a refreshing little sci-fi story that didn't have any killer AIs hellbent on eradicating humanity, nor was it a dystopian tale of oppression or rebellion. Just a good story.
5/19/16: I reviewed Cloud Country, the sequel to No Dogs in Philly, over on the New Podler blog. I hate giving bad reviews, but being dishonest is worse.
It's been a cool spring, but I've finally been getting outside. No writing unfortunately. I took my wife and kids on a road trip to visit my parents. Getting ready for the trip, the trip itself, and getting caught up afterwards sucked up a lot of time. Oh yeah, and the NHL playoffs.
My favorite neighbors have given up on CT and moved to Florida. They were nice people and recently retired. She was an insurance agent; he was an arborist. He taught me a lot about the care of trees, not to mention lending a helpful hand when I needed to have tree work done. I'm really sorry to see them go.
There are now five houses on my street—it's two blocks long—that are for sale. I'm wondering how much of it has to do with the state's poor economic health.
4/11/16: I reviewed God of Ruin, the last book in Michael John Grist's Ruins trilogy, over on the New Podler blog.
Finished editing book two in Rob Steiner's Journals of Natta Magus series.
I heard spring is coming. I hope so. I drained the last of the gas out of the snowblower today.
3/18/16: I reviewed Scott Rhine's Supergiant over on the New Podler blog. It's the sequel to Void Contract, which I reviewed back in July. More sci-fi adventure fun.
Started editing book two in Rob Steiner's Journals of Natta Magus series.
I keep finding time to work on Gateway to Empire. More of the "500 words here, 500 words there" variety, but I'm enjoying the fact that I'm back to writing. I'm pleasantly surprised how easily the words are flowing out of me.
2/17/16: I reviewed Richard Levesque's The Somniscient over on the New Podler blog.
I've had more time to work on Gateway to Empire. While it's of the "500 words here, 500 words there" variety, it's still progress.
1/27/16: I reviewed King Ruin, the sequel to Mr. Ruins, over on the New Podler blog.
Work continues, albeit slowly, on Gateway to Empire. I was able to fix a conflict that didn't ring true and expand a couple parts. I'm finding that I tend to offer a rushed narrative on the initial draft. Mere bones of a story. I'm going back to add flesh.
Older news can be found here.