Books In Print & Gluten Free Bread

Hello all!

How are things going? Enjoying the weather? How are the kids? Oh, did you hear that ***insert political or news thing here***? That’s so awful, I just can’t believe it!

Just letting you all know, I finally got around to setting up the paperback version of Beyond Freedom on amazon, as well as the paperback version of Malicious. So if you were wanting those, they are available now.

Originally, the reason I didn’t set up the paperback version of Beyond Freedom when I released the ebook was because I was using Createspace for my paperbacks back then, and Amazon bought them out. There was a timeframe when they were switching everything over from Createspace’s site to the KDP site, so I couldn’t do it right then. As for Malicious, I just plain forgot to do it.

I’m so terrible.

But don’t you just love holding a paper book in your hands? I know, I love ebooks too! I listen to audiobooks. Books in all forms are wonderful, but there are times when you just want the physical copy in your hands. In an ebook or audiobook you can’t easily flip back a dozen pages and find the name of that guy the main character bumped into on the corner.

And there is just something about a physical book that sucks you in more, too. Plus, how many times have you started reading an ebook and kind of forgotten the story title, what the cover looked like, or details like that? Especially if you read it over a period of several days.

There is a discoverability bonus with physical copies, as well. I don’t know about you all, but I reread books sometimes. I’ll see it on the shelf and be reminded of it and want to flip through it again. That doesn’t happen as much with ebooks. They aren’t there, physically staring you in the face. They don’t have the “pick me up and open me” vibe that a physical copy does.

At least that’s my feeling on things.

So we got the breadmaker, and I’ve been trying to make bread with it. I even tried the recipe that came with it, though I had to substitute to different gluten free flour.

The recipe it came with did not turn out well at all. To top that all off, the mild allergy I have to yeast turned out to be a fairly strong allergy, which didn’t help matters. Let’s just say I didn’t really enjoy that bread as much as I thought I would. I’ve never noticed an allergic reaction to yeast before, even though I did test mildly allergic. So now I know I really need to avoid yeast, which is one good thing that came from that first loaf.

My second loaf also didn’t turn out as well as I hoped. I tried making it without yeast, but it was kind of flavorless and did not rise at all. I’ve made yeastless breads before, and they will rise a little. Not this one.

Having learned from the first two attempts, my third attempt is much better. More water, more sweetener, and I added some vanilla. It did rise some, tastes a lot better, and actually did okay in the toaster. I’m getting close.

So yeah, you were all wondering, I know. So fascinating, right?

Everyone have a great weekend!

Vague Book Talk

I’ve been working on my book with the robot. I have run into some issues that I have to work out here, though. Mostly, there is a point when I need a character to make a realization, and it’s important that I lay the groundwork correctly. There needs to be enough evidence for this character without someone just coming out and saying it to them. I’m trying to drop hints along the way, but it’s hard. I need it to be obvious for the reader, but not so much for the character, which is a difficult line to walk.

And that was all probably really vague. Argh. Still, it’s a work in progress, so I’m not saying too much about it here.

So what else is going on in life?

I’ve had a strange feeling that there is another story percolating somewhere in the back of my brain, and it might be a good one if I can just figure out what the heck it is. I don’t even have characters yet, just a vibe that there are pieces falling into place, which is a vibe I’ve gotten a couple of other times with other books. We’ll see where that goes.

We had an old Commodore 64 that would only show a blue screen, no text. We got that fixed (bad basic rom chip), but now we’ve found that there are memory issues, so we have to dig into that. Parts are on order, so we might move on to see if we can get that old TRS-80 working.

We’re planning on trying a bread maker. It just seems the gluten free bread we find is incredibly bad or too expensive, so I’m going to give making it myself a shot. I’ve made bread at home, but I just want to see if this makes it a bit easier. Also, I’ve never really made a yeast bread, so we’ll be trying that soon.

So anyway, everyone have a great weekend.

Working On New Story

So yeah, working on story with the robot. I’m kind of liking where it is going, but it needs some tweaking here at the beginning. Also, I’ve already renamed a major character. Her name just didn’t sound right to me. It’s better now than later on.

So how do character names affect the character perception, anyway? I mean this is actually something I think a lot about. When was the last time you saw a mob boss named Wally? Or a President named Delbert? A brilliant scientist named Tawny? We all know they can be named that, but it’s not our first thoughts with those names. At least not mine. I picture Wally as an easy going going, maybe shop keeper or gardener, for example.

So maybe the fact that I can’t think of those names in those roles is the biggest problem. I suppose that makes sense. A name has to feel right to me for me to get in the head of the character while I write them. Unless they are a side character, I have to be very careful with names. I could see writing a character whose name doesn’t fit their personality or role in the story at all, either as a form of misdirection or just ironically, but it would take a very special situation for me to feel comfortable doing that.

*

Last night I pulled up the video for the song ‘Same Love’, by Macklemore & Lewis. I just thought I’d listen to it quickly and go on. Instead I started thinking of the first time I heard it, and also the first time I heard it along with my wife. We weren’t married yet, but we were pretty much set on doing that as soon as we possibly could. Anyway, I remember that night, and I remember fighting back tears in the car. I know it’s just a song, really, but it’s the thought behind in it.

We’ve come a long way in that short time since that song came out. It seems like there are those out there who are attacking at all times, trying their very best to claw back all our hard fought rights. But the thing to remember is where we were at that time and where we are now. These were a couple of guys in a part of the music industry that wasn’t exactly the most gay-friendly part. They did this anyway. Yeah, they became more famous and popular for it, but it was a huge risk for them. I think they did it because they felt strongly that it was the right thing.

It’s little things like that which ended up changing hearts and minds in this country. It’s going to take more, for sure, but that was a small step. Marriage equality had a lot of things stacking up against it at the time, but we overcame all that and now can all marry. There are more battles to win, such as ENDA, but it’s going to take people making little stands for what they believe in. If you make those little stands when you feel strongly, others sometimes come along. A few at a time, but then that few brings a few with them, and they bring a few with them, and supporters grow. I think we need to try to focus less on the negatives–the administration we have that is pushing so hard against LGBTQ people, for one– and instead focus on taking steps and bringing others along. At least that is what I try to remind myself.

Anyway, everyone have a great weekend!