Monday, January 1, 2018

Captain's Log, Day 184: A Log of 2017

          As is tradition, here is my recap of--huh? What's that?

          Well, apparently I forgot to make a recap for 2016. In my defense, it was a weird year.

          THIS year, however, I'm doing my duty for future generations and summing up 2017. I know people will be so interested in what I did before I got famous (and, future generations, I'm gonna go out on a limb and assume it's the exact same stuff I'm doing now, with fewer gadgets). Read on for a snapshot of my life!

          January: I completely neglected (as I mentioned) to provide a recap of 2016, possibly and erroneously assuming that my update on the Midway family would suffice for a recap. Even if that did count, that was kinda cheating on my part, since I only wrote about a fourth of it. January was kind of a busy month for me; I finished releasing Off the Radar and I decided that I was getting a little bored with my current job. I decided to shop around for new jobs on the offhand chance that a) someone wanted to hire me and b) there was a job that I was actually interested in. I put my new resume up on a couple job-hunting sites and...

          February: flooded with interview requests. Didn't get any writing done, unfortunately; I was attending interviews. Oh, and house shopping, in case I wanted to stay in the area. And running; for some reason, there was a 70-degree warm spell, which was freaking PHENOMENAL! (I hate winter.) Not much to report there.

          March: Interviews were halted abruptly when I found out a company I'd really liked was hiring. I promptly sent in a resume and crossed my fingers. While waiting, I got some work done on Lost, finishing that book up, and started on Voidwalker. I also took a break to make a small report and display some cover art before getting to work on cleaning up Deadman Switch for publication. And all that work stopped when I got hired by the company I was hoping for!

          April: I spent about half of this month on the road, driving from South Dakota to Minnesota and back. I was still working at my previous company, but I timed my two-week notice out so I only had three days off to move all my crap. I managed to find an apartment in record time, but (since I was moving pretty much by myself) I had to take four or five trips back and forth to complete the move. In a 48-hour period, I spent about 30+ hours on the road. Kinda sucked, but the Dodger took it like a champ. I was also finishing up the Deadman Switch book cover, programming myself a website and working on my boat, so I slept maybe three hours. That month.

          May: Same thing: boat, book,'s a word for "website" that starts with "b"? I got nothing. I was also thrown headfirst into my new job and seriously enjoying it. Much less travel this month, though. I was grateful for that.

          June: I finished up the Deadman Switch book cover, as well as my author website, Facebook page, Instagram, and Twitter. (Figured I'd hit the big three there.) Once that was done, I published my novel...and got my first feedback not even 12 hours later. Five stars! Guess someone liked it! With that completed, I got into an argument with someone of stature little and started writing about college stuff in order to win a bet. (I'm still working on it, but I WILL WIN IT. Just have to finish writing these stories down! You're gonna lose, Shorty!) Additionally, I started a new series called "Off the Top of My Head" for my author site, publishing the first post right away so it looked like I had some content up there.

          July: Work on my boat proceeded apace; I finally got the last piece in to make the Panama functional (the motor) and proceeded to spend a lot of time out on the lake. Shout-out to Rach for helping me install the engine! I mean, I had to install a new one a few weeks later when I blew a piston rod in that one, but hey--we had fun. Seriously, if you only click on one link in this, click on the Panama one. That boat is beautiful. I'm really proud of it. I also wrote another story about my college years, crossing two out of the seven stories for the bet off my list.

          August: By this point, work was getting easier (I was starting to understand it a little better now) and it was getting cold. Seriously, too cold for boating, even. I was irked, but there was nothing I could do about it. I started attending Taekwondo again, since I was back in the area of my original school, and played games with and pranks on other people. Sometimes simultaneously. I had no regrets. I also started reorganizing my files and stumbled across a really old siege engine design, so I wrote down a story about why and how I'd designed and built it.

          September: Taekwondo kicked into high gear; I started preparing for the Interschool Tournament (a Taekwondo tournament, FYI) and really began working on a few other projects I had. I also started winterizing the Panama, stopping when it got super warm so I could take her out on the lake a few more times. I also started thinking ahead to National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and what I wanted to write about for that. I also added to "Off the Top of My Head" when I was a little sleep-deprived. It shows.

          October: I broke a rib a week before the Taekwondo tournament. Sadly, I resigned myself the sparring (fighting) match signup, but competing in everything else--patterns, team patterns, board-breaking, and weapons demonstrations. However, once at the match, I was informed that there was a higher belt there who had signed up for sparring (he was a third degree black belt, I was a second degree black belt) who had no one to compete against. I decided to suck it up and put on my sparring gear. I somehow managed to win, despite the repeated impacts to the damaged side of my ribcage. Afterwards, I chose the smart path (for once) and took a break from Taekwondo the following week to heal. OW. I used the time to prep for NaNoWriMo and write down some advice and strategies for the month. I also reminisced about possums in a different story. Maybe you're better off not knowing.

          November: Oh gosh, check Instagram. I documented my progress with pictures. You can see exactly where I snapped and desired to edit my new book with archery. (It's not that bad; I just had an interesting day.) That's pretty much all I did, though; work, write, and...what's a word for "Taekwondo" that begins with "w"? Dang, I'm really batting zero on the alliteration tonight.

          December: I opened up the month by testing for my next rank in Taekwondo on the first. I also broke my hand because I'm an idiot sometimes, but hey--still passed (possibly because I refused to admit that I broke my hand until after the test). Perihelion bought one of my short stories, Timelock, and published it that month as well. That was my first commercial short story sale! Heck, the story about how I got it published is kind of funny all by itself, but you can read about that on my website. I also considered taking up photography, but decided that Ma pretty much had that covered.

          And that pretty much wraps up the year! Tune in this next year for:
          -at least two, potentially three new book releases
          -more short stories, both of the fictional and non-fictional type
          -insanity (probably)
          -winning that bet with Shorty
          -the story about how I bought my first property (haven't yet, but it's GONNA HAPPEN)
          -and a partridge in a pear tree. (Hey, it's still the Christmas season!)

          To all of you who've followed me through the creation of this blog, to the publication of my first major novel and other writing-related endeavors...thanks for sticking with me and believing in me. Wishing you all a happy and prosperous New Year!