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The Sea Wasp (Ryk E. Spoor)
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Tuesday, October 30th, 2007

Time Event
Catch-Up Posting Mania! (1)
Well, well. It's been over a month since I updated. Sorry about that!

Partly this is due to the fact that a *LOT* of my posting effort and activity goes generally into the Beta Reading list (rykspoor_beta), as that's (at least in theory) helping me improve professionally. But things have been busy and other things have conspired to be distracting.

The saddest event of the past few weeks has been the death of my Aunt Alle. I am *SO* glad that, despite the money being pretty hefty, I decided to make sure we got out to California to visit Alle, Jim, Sue, and Don; all of my kids got to meet them and see part of California (which was, as I posted back then, beautiful). Alle was my dad's sister, Jim her husband; my dad corresponded with them frequently especially in the later years, and visited them a couple of times. They were always gracious and polite and energetic, never slowing down despite getting older. Now Jim's in the same position my Dad was, and I hope he can bear up well; I know it was a terrible time for my dad.

Kathleen has been starting up a jewelry business -- necklaces, earrings, etc. She's very good, and I'm sure eventually this will start making money... but as they say, it takes money to make it, and the beginning of a business is the "take" stage.

This is somewhat more significant in that we've had to have work done on the house -- new rear sliding door, and a complete new bathroom. Those who own houses know that this kind of stuff costs notable money.

The kids have started school again; Chris' disorganization is finally coming round to bite him where it hurts, and he's now in a special program that helps kids focus on getting their job done. The only PROBLEM with this is that if he hasn't finished his work, he stays after school the next day to get it finished (so that he doesn't fall farther behind). This wouldn't be a problem, except that the later bus refuses to actually drop him off near the house; the driver won't come past a certain location and drops him off a fair distance away.

Now, I'm not opposed to kids walking. Heck, when I was a kid I walked all the way across Schenectady sometimes to get to school. But in THIS era, where they won't even let you walk your kid across the street, it strikes me as wrongheaded for them to keep him later, then drop him off a quarter mile or more away, on a busy street.
Catch-up Posting Mania! (2)
Kathleen convinced me to join her online "Torchwood" RPG; I am currently playing The Doctor (#4, Tom Baker) and Wolverine (Logan from the X-Men). This may have been a mistake since now I'm often having to respond to people she knows in the evening, so our limited time is now spent even more geekily than before!

In other RPG news, the Ravenloft campaign has been going well. My friend Eric Palmer brought his niece Renee to the game, and she's since taken up the role of Ireena Kolyana. Among other events, Ireena had a religious conversion and dedicated herself to the god Myrionar (of Justice and Vengeance), undertaking a small but difficult quest to prove her dedication and culminating in winning a special favor (a mystical weapon) from the god. (in Ravenloft, you'd darn well better have good weapons).

I'll also note that I had to beef up all the NPCs. It sometimes strikes me that the people doing these modules focus on writing the plotline but don't apply logic to the characters. Ashlyn, for instance, a Paladin (of Pelor originally, though of Myrionar in mine), had at best blah stats, and at worst actively STUPID ones. I mean, really, a major NPC warrior-type with an 8 dexterity???? Ireena, Ashlyn, Sir Urik, and others needed major boosting.

As the characters have also been getting higher level, I had to boost the baddies too, but I rather expected that. What I *didn't* expect was that they'd have both extraordinarily good AND bad luck. They've made considerable progress in the plot, but during the battle with the coven... well, they caused the coven to do a critical spellcasting fumble when they interrupted the summon, and unleashed the FULL-form demon. That damn near got them all killed, and only some extraordinary luck in counterspelling by Carl Steivesen, the Cleric of Terian, saved their bacon at all (and as it was they were damn near dead). Said demon is still at large and will be seeking revenge later, once he's assembled a force he feels is worthy.

In writing news, I'm up to around 75,000 words done in Grand Central Arena. No word yet on whether Toni likes it or not.
World Fantasy Con!
I will be at World Fantasy Con (in Saratoga) this week (starts on Thursday, runs through Sunday). This is more a professional than a fan convention, where a lot of authors, editors, and publishers get together, make connections, etc. I hope to make a few good connections while I'm there. Fans are of course welcome, but if you haven't already got your tickets be warned that it's pricey for an SF convention.

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