To all my readers and followers, please keep in mind that I have now moved over to my new blog, Father Nature's Corner, so Cedar's Mountain is now on a semi-permanent hiatus.

If you're looking for the wit and wisdom that Cedar's Mountain is known for, please click on the link up above or to the right, and I promise you that you won't be disappointed.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Broken Promises

As I've mentioned previously, I plan on publishing a trilogy of shorts so that I can keep my name out there whilst I figure out my next move. I spent the better of two weeks (real life interruptus was in play) formatting and tweaking my manuscript while I was deciding on what kind of cover to have. I eventually found the perfect cover pic at iStockphoto and after talking about it on Facebook, hooked up with a fellow writer and graphic design artist Bailey Ardisone, who not only created the cover for me, but came up with a new title for the trilogy.



I plan on releasing this bad boy, once I do a few more necessary tweaks to the manuscript (new title and proper design credit), this coming weekend.

To refresh everyone's memory, the blurb is as follows:

Love anew. Love misplaced. Love taboo. 
Three stories that present a fresh twist to those common themes. 
In "The Right Thing" Tim is forced to work through the heartache of his childhood sweetheart dropping him for another as he roams a local festival. 
"Singularly Married" showcases how the love for another can be sadly misconstrued and misinterpreted. 
Finally, "Friends With Benefits" shows how two longtime bff's take their deep respect for another to a place that no one can truly understand.

I need to give credit where credit is due and Bailey Ardisone did a fantastic job on the cover for me. She is a very talented writer as well, with "Sweet Oblivion" being her latest release (Kindle, Nook & iBooks). You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, her Twitter alter ego, her website and her blog.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Finish Me Now!!!!

There is absolutely nothing worse than having roughly a half dozen handwritten posts* in various stages of incompleteness sitting next to your computer screaming out at the top of their collective lungs, "Finish me now!!!!"

Almost all of them, save two, were started when an idea popped into my head (usually at work) that stayed around long enough for me to start writing them down later in the day. The bad thing was that I started writing them later in the day, like an hour before it was quitting time. One cropped up while I was editing my short story trilogy and hung around long enough for me to copy and paste various related paragraphs to a Word document, and the other cropped up while I was doing my Saturday morning errands recently.

So for today's post, I thought I would share with one and all what the title/topic of those partial handwritten posts in order to give you a little insight on what makes good ol' G.B. tick when the blogging bug bites. My friends, be very very afraid.

1} Deep Down, You Know You Got It: This one is about how deep down, we all got a hankering for authentic country and its various sub-genres music.

2} How To Take A Nap: Yes, you read correctly. I started writing this one back when Connecticut was getting smacked around with a  week-long heatwave, and yes, the idea came to me when I was falling asleep in the very hot shade of Cedar Mountain.

3} Lurching Towards A Happy Medium: This was another writing update/explanation as to why I was dropping my current project and picking up on a novella that I wrote about five years ago. This one was actually a pretty decent semi-crime novella not only set in Connecticut, but uses quite a few local settings/locations that some of you might be familiar with.

4} What's Your Book's Soundtrack?: This one is pretty much self-explanatory, but just in case you need clarification, I try to answer the question of what music might your book, either as a writer or as a reader, conjure up the minute you open it.

5} Road Trip: The idea for this one came to me while I was driving to my other office in Middletown this past June. I was having a pretty bad week and my bi-weekly drive helped cure (for a little while) the blues.

6} Untitled: This one originally cropped up while I was editing my short story trilogy (more on that Wednesday). The topic of choice is female character description, which is one of my strong suits in my writing.

Most of these will eventually make it to this blog, but in the meantime you have just finished reading a now rare blog post. I say rare because this post was written completely on the fly. In other words, I sat down in front of the computer and instead of using one of my handwritten posts, I used my brain and wrote without any kind of plan or outline.

And please be advised that if you click on the asterisk, it will take you to my adult blog. Nothing nasty or R/X/NC-17 but I figure since I have the space, I might as well us it. The post over there will take you less than ten seconds to read and zero to comment, because I'm making it comment proof. And the links you'll see will take you to a multiple of places that feature me, because hey, I have an ego and I might as well stroke it as much as possible.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Suburban Solitude

In spite of the recent heatwave that pretty much backed Connecticut three times over so that it became completely jerked, I still enjoy sitting in the shady embrace that is Cedar Mountain.


I won't say that there's something magical about the mountain, but it does give me the necessary solitude that my spirit consistently craves for.

Think about it for a moment.

If you live in the country/backwoods, you're pretty much surrounded by the timeless beauty and natural healing power that is Mother & Father Nature. So all you really have to do whenever you need an attitude adjustment is to simply open your front or back door and step outside to the bask in the simplicity of what God has graced your world with.

But what if you live in suburbia?

How do you find that small slice of solitude while in the middle of the organized chaos that is city/suburban living? Chances are that you  live in a good neighborhood that is peaceful and content, yet devoid of anything that allows you to do the preceding paragraph justice. And because you can't do the preceding paragraph justice at your own home, you have to waste time, energy and money, to go someplace else and fulfill the preceding paragraph.


But if you happen to live in a neighborhood that somehow has managed to snag something from Mother & Father Nature (like my neighborhood for example), then you can pretty much do that particular preceding paragraph with only a few modifications.

Like: having a few bird feeders strewn about the front yard. All you have to do is either peer through the front window or the front door (w/o stepping onto the porch) and get your morning dose of what kind of feathered friends Mother Nature has to offer.


Or, if you need something heavier and more potent, you can walk through the back door and if you're even a little bit like me stroll to the side yard and take a seat under a quartet of trees.


If you close your eyes, the symphony that is (in my case) the mountain begins to play. From the gentle breeze that lazily makes it way down through the trees and glides across the road to caress your spirit, to the quiet singing/talking of Mother & Father Nature's most cherished feathered friends that lulls you to a quiet internal sleep and a external zone out.

Just even closing your eyes for several seconds as you walk to your car first thing in the morning is enough to get that small does of natural freshness to make an unbearable day a little more bearable.


The healing power of Mother & Father Nature i a truly memorable thing not only to have at your disposal when needed, but to experience as well.


Without it, life can be pretty much a pointless journey to nowhere.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Whimsy, Thy Name Is Holly

snoooooooooooooooooore

jingle, jingle, jingle

jump

"What the...whose there?! Holly?!"


meow.

"Holly! It's five o'clock in the morning! Breakfast isn't for another half hour!!"


meow.

"I don't care! Get off my chest!"



The cat goes airborne, bounces off the door and executes a perfect four paw landing. Sitting down, she wraps her tail around her hear and begin to purr rather loudly. This goes on for several minutes before she abruptly stops and climbs up onto the bed. Very quickly, she climb up on her "master's" chest, sit down mere inches from his face and purrs.


Loudly.

A few minutes later, the man groggily opens his eyes and rubs them for several seconds, before going into shock as his cat is purring directly into his mouth.

Startled, he sits up and tosses the cat through the open door and out of the room, where she graciously executes another perfect four paw landing.

"And stop bothering me for breakfast! I'll feed you when I'm damn good and ready, ya dumb cat!"

The man staggers out of bed and as he walks from dresser to dresser gathering up his implements of destruction (coffee cup, meds, tray), Holly is right there, walking in between his legs and generally staying underfoot. More than once the man steps on Holly, who yelps in pain and scoots out of the room and down the stairs.

The man continues to stagger and lurch as he walks down the stairs, all the while trying to dodge Holly, who's determined to trip him. Sure enough, a couple of minutes later, at the exact moment the man steps onto the landing, he tangles with Holly and goes airborne.

Landing with a thud, it was many minutes later before he came to. When he did, the first thing that he saw was Holly sitting on his chest and purring like a motorboat.



The man raises his head and says, "I can't feed you if you're siting on my chest!"

Holly jumps off, runs over to the windowsill and jumps on. Poking her head out from between the curtains, she let rips with a guttural growl that causes the man to flinch.

"Shut up!" says the man as he throws his coffee cup at Holly.

Holly dodges the cup and jumps down as the man walks over to grab her food dish. As he's walking back to the kitchen, Holly starts walking in between and once again the man lands on his back with a thud.

Holly quickly jumps on the man and proceeds to sit on his face.



The man struggles to break free, but the more he struggles the more Holly shifts her position to fully cover his face.

The man starts to turn a bright shade of red but Holy has no intention of moving until she is fed. The man struggles in vain to get free but Holly proves to be too much for him as he abruptly slips in the big sleep. As the man twitches one final time, Holly jumps straight up into the air and lands squarely on the man's stomach.



Yawning, she flashes a mouthful of razor sharp teeth. Lick her lips, she let rips with another guttural growl, before settling down to eat breakfast.

Monday, July 22, 2013

A Trilogy Of Love

As you might have been able to deduce from my various blog posts and Facebook updates, I've decided to take another crack at self-publishing. There are but three major reasons as to why I would self-publish:

1} I have a few regularly published stories as well as a regularly published novel under my belt;

2} I feel extremely confident (but not to the point of being stupid) about my writing:

3} I'm still undecided about querying my novella, so I really nee to have something else published in order to keep my name out there and to drum up a little interest in my other novel.

With reason number three gently but firmly chipping away at my psyche, I decided to take that giant step forward again. Having both learned my lesson the first time around and watching what others did for self-publishing, I had a very good idea on what and where I should do it.

The what was pretty easy, in that i had three good stories that I had previously published on my now closed short story blog a few years ago, in a slightly different telling/format.

The reason why I chose those stories was directly due to the fact that they perfectly fit the theme of love, but with a slightly different twist.

Story number one is about new love being found, with a town festival being the backdrop; story number two is about love misconstrued and story number three is about love that is taboo.

The where was also pretty easy to choose as well.

There are really only two good self-publishing websites that you can use if you're genuinely serious about putting out a good product: Smashwords and CreateSpace.

Smashwords is exclusively e-books, while CreateSpace is almost exclusively print. And since e-books is not quite the seismic wave of the future that people make it out to be but still a very viable alternative for those who want to put out short stories, Smashwords is where I'm going.

I also took the liberty of setting up an account at iStock Photo, since I really want to have good solid cover for this trilogy. As for the design aspect, I got an offer from a fellow writer in a writer's group that I belong to, of her help with the design for free. So within a week or so, I plan on checking back with here to see if the offer is still valid.

In the meantime, I have a blurb that I want to share with you. I wasn't too sure on how much detail I should go into for each story, so I would like your honest opinion on the blurb. Is it a dieter's delight or should it be more beefy?

Love anew. Love misplaced. Love taboo.
Three short stories that present a fresh twist to those common themes.
In "The Right Thing", Tim is forced to work through the heartache of his childhood sweetheart dropping him for another as he roams a local festival.
"Singularly Married" showcases how love for another can be sadly misconstrued and misinterpreted.
And finally, "Friends With Benefits" showcases how two longtime best friends take their deep respect for another to a place that no one can truly understand.


Friday, July 19, 2013

Ye Olde Timey Newspaper Humor

My brain is fried to a golden crisp this week (if you've been following the weather this week, you'll understand where I'm coming from) so any kind originality has evaporated right along with what little percipatation that Mother Nature deigned to give to us.

With that being the case, I will now bring to you some olde timey (19th century) humor, courtesy of my first state job, The Connecticut Newspaper Project ('96-'01).

Mary's Little Gown

Mary had a little gown
Of silk cut very low;
It almost nearly reached her knees,
An inch above or so.
And everywhere that Mary went;
That dress was sure to go;
And everybody looked and stared
At Mary's dress, you know!
And everywhere that Mary went, 
Her silk hose there below,
Were very, very prominent,
They glistened in the sunlgiht so.
Dressed in her silks so fine,
She found that all the men adored
The human form divine.


A tall western girl, named Short, long loved a certain big Mr. Little; while Little, little thinking of Short, loved a little lass named Long. To make a long story short, Little proposed to Long, and Short longed to be even with Little's short comings. So Short, meeting Long, threatened to marry Little before long, which caused Little, in short time, to marry Long. Query: Did tall Short love big Little less, because Little loved Long?


The Sign of Age

I was a youngster yesterday,
Wearing my sunset hose.
Blowing a slice of my weekly pay
To buy some girl a rose.
Youthful I felt until just now;
Today things took a flop.
Just now a sport of the rah-rah sot
Gave hail to me as "Pop".

Age comes creeping before you know,
That is the common lot,
Month by month we older grow
And yet we feel it not.
All of a sudden you know that you
Come of ancient crop,
When a flippant kid with a fancy lid
Alludes to you as "Pop".


Equal Rights

Woman demand equal rights with men. What does a woman have to wear during the hot days of 1913?
One low necked, sleeveless mosquito netting gown.
One pair silk stockings.
One pair of slippers.
That's all.

What does a man wear during said hot days?
One coat.
One vest.
One pair of trousers.
One shirt with starched collar.
One pair socks.
One pair shoes.
One union suit.
One hat.
One pair suspenders.
One belt.
One necktie.

If he takes his coat off in a hot restaurant he is thrown out. If he takes his tight collar off he's a rube. If he wore his trousers slit up the knee he would be sent to the insane asylum.

Equal rights? Huh!!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Number 758, ReDeux!

Time now to blow off the cobwebs of a seldom used blog tag, thus challenging myself to write something completely relevant, or at the very least, somewhat intelligent.

Today, will we updating funky post number 758. Funky post number 758 covered the fascinating world of commercial publishing guidelines. This time around, we'll cover the fascinating world of self-publishing guideline.

Now, contrary to popular opinion, there are guidelines for self-publishing.

Almost everyone is familiar with self-publishing and everyone is familiar with the basic guideline of making sure your manuscript is relatively up to snuff, has no errors, been vetted by at least two people and actually makes sense. And usually that is all you need to self publish a manuscript, because quite frankly, most self-publishing outfits don't require much else.

However, two of your major self-publishing outfits actually require you to do a helluva lot more to your manuscript in order to make it a viable piece of reading material, because quite frankly, they actually want you to succeed.

Both CreateSpace (self publishing arm of Amazon) and Smashwords have guidebooks and easy-to-use services ranging from free to spending a bit of money in order to get your book as polished as it needs to be so that you can maximize your sales.

In fact, Smashwords goes one step further and states that if you don't follow their guidelines, you won't be able to publish your e-book there. Now, their user guide (of which I downloaded a free copy) is the equivalent of one of those "For Dummies" books, and its written so clear and concise that even a techno Luddite like myself can understand, apply and take the necessary steps so that I can publish a small short story trilogy next month (hopefully).

So my friends, if writing is definitely your bag and you don't really want to go the commercial route (although I strongly suggest starting out that way so that you can get some much needed exposure), self-publishing is the way to go. But, I strongly suggest that you stick to using either Smashwords or CreateSpace for the simple reason that the outlay of funds can be minimal-to-zero. Lulu can cost you a ton o'money simply because they're affiliated with ASI (I believe, although I could be wrong on this point), so I really can't recommend them just on that point alone.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Switching Genres

Before I get into the meaty breakfast that is today's post, I want to give everyone a brief update on the wife. She is currently on the mend, still in a bit of pain (and managing it the best she can) and has her next follow up on the 23rd, which if things go well, she'll have her sutures removed.

In general, writers can be a fickle bunch.

One minute, they're cruising along with the ragtop down, wind blowing in their face, driving down any road that happens to strike their fancy. Next minute, they hit the previous fork in the road and screech to a halt as indecision grips their mind to make them foam at the mouth.

Such is the world of me.

The other day (waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay long time ago) while I was tap dancing around a particularly revolting scene in my crime novel (mainly because I didn't want to write a scene involving snuff), I got to thinking about what else I could work on.

So I went through my memory banks and came up with a slush novella that I had actually finished about a year ago. It wasn't originally meant to be a slush novella but simply something to keep myself busy with while i was waiting for my book to be published.

For those of you who remember this particular post about me not writing anything original in almost four years, I offer you my sincerest apologies. Because, as you can plainly see, I did write something original within the past four years and belatedly remembered that I did while writing this post (also wrote the novella "Shadow's Vengeance" which can be found under the tag ASWR).

So I quickly ditched the crime novella and took out my paranormal fantasy novella to work on. The good thing about this novella is that it's complete: eight chapters totaling seventy-seven pages. Another good thing about this novella is that there's a decent buildup to the plateau and great race to the finish. The one bad hing about the novella is the finish.

Because there was a sense of urgency on my part to get this novella completed (if memory serves, I had just gotten the first draft back from the editor of my novel), I came up with what I seriously deem to be a very weak ending, just so I could get this out of the way.

So I blew off the dust bunnies and proceeded to re-familiarize myself with it, and I must say that in spite of the weak ending, this novella is pretty solid. So I spent the next few weeks trying to expand the initial weak ending and eventually, I had a moment of clarity while taking a shower and came up with a proper ending that not only completely ties the entire novella together but makes the reader think about it after they're done reading.*

Just to refresh your memory about this novella, and "refresh" is the operative word as I've written about this before, the idea originally came from one of my many long walks through town. Originally it was about a man who had to make a delivery of a package. However, since I can't seem to do anything normal, I instantly tweaked the package to a head and I upped the violence to something that I could comfortably deal with. I also stuck it in the realm of paranormal because it seems to be the easiest thing for me to play with, having dabbled with it on numerous occasions with my flash fiction and my novel.

I also made a conscious effort to both turn up the heat and turn down the heat at the same time. In other words, make the female as sexual and sensual as possible without drifting over to the hardcore. And except for one scene that I had posted as an excerpt at my adult blog, I pretty much kept the heat at that level.

The violence in the novella is pretty much like my novella Shadow's Vengeance, in that it isn't over the top for the genre in question, and in fact I think that this one would make a great companion to the aforementioned novella.

I'm also think about a new title for it as what I got, "Blackness In The White Sand", doesn't really work.

So to sum it up, I think I've found a good genre to dabble in, simply because it allows me to be me in a manner that I'm growing accustomed to. Plus, I think I've finally found the niche that I've been searching for quite awhile.

*Update: I'd originally wrote this post back in late May/early June and since then, I had finished the novella and already performed the 2nd revision. I've also had a few people read and critique it as well, so I got something to use when the time comes to publish it. In the meantime, I've found a seriously old novella that I'm going to tweak and turn into a paranormal fantasy as well. Theme of that one is drugs, so I can have a lot of fun with that one as well.

Friday, July 12, 2013

A Two And A Half Fer The Price Of One Full Share

Yowza.

This week hasn't been too too bad for me as the jack of all trades at home (manservant, house-husband, driver, and of course, lacky) so today's post will continue our modest streak of not phoning it in (yes, I know I gave a warning, but isn't it better to be forewarned than to be surprised?).

For starters, I'm not here. I'm elsewhere in my little world.

Specifically, for starters, I am over at Shooting Suburbia, hosting the final installment of Alive Is The Neighborhood.

And, for extra special bonus, I'm over at my adult blog It's Always Saturday In Suburbia, hosting for only the 2nd time in my nascent writing career, a pure G-rate Disney type short story, simply entitled "The Tree".

I originally wrote the short story for a fellow Solstice writer's story blog, but being that I'm still stuck in that dark dank hole of zero tolerance for overly caffeinated writers who shamelessly pimp (like seriously over the top) their writings, I decided to share the story with people who don't have that narrow focus of being just writers (which if you notice, I only follow writers whose interests are infinite).

Namely you.

So whatever your poison happens to be, either visually stimulated (picture) or imagination gone haywire (written word), I hope your Friday is a good 'un.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Upping My Dates

So to bring everyone up to speed with the latest happenings with moi and moi's significant other, here's what's been going on.

1} The wife (aka Joanne) made it through surgery with flying colors. It was an outpatient thingy and we (meaning moi and thou) spent about several hours there. We got there around 11a and because Herr Doctor was running a little late, thou didst not go in until 1:30p (surgery was scheduled for 12:30p). I made roughly three round trips from Newington to Middletown (each drive totaling about 45 minutes or so) and we didn't get home until roughly 6:30p. Staff was very excellent and thou has a follow up on the 23rd for removal of sutures and another cast.

2} I switched gears with my writing yet again, and if you haven't followed my various updates on Facebook (author's page and personal page), I decided to self publish a very small trilogy of short stories that will total a shade over 11,500 words. The trilogy is tentatively titled "A Trilogy of Love" and I plan on doing it through  Smashwords. I download their very handy dandy formatting guide over the long July 4th holiday and hopefully by the next weekend, I'll be doing a boatload of formatting in preparation for August release date. I also opened up an account with iStockphoto, so that I can come up with a good cover, which after I mail in the required amount of money, I'll purchase and do a cover reveal.

The main reason why I'm self-pubbing this trilogy is that I'm still undecided about whether or not I should still continue to query my novella, and by doing this, I'll have something else out there with my name on it for people to use and abuse.

And thus, summer has officially arrived here on the mountain, where it was so hot and muggy this weekend that sitting in the shade of the mountain was a lot like a mouse trying to find shade under a blade of grass.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Medical Update

Howdy folks!

Not much in the way of a post today and quite possibly not much might pop up this week for blog posts.

As I've previously mentioned in the comments, in a blog post and on Facebook (for those of you who are part of my circle, and if you aren't, why aren't you?), my lovely wife Joanne shattered her ankle a couple of weeks ago while camping.

Today, at 12:30p (give or take), she'll be undergoing outpatient surgery (yes, I said outpatient) where she'll be having pins and plate inserted into her ankle. Being the loving dutiful husband that I am, I'll be taking today off from work to help transport her to and fro (how the hell am I gonna get her up the stairs and into the house??) from the surgical center and basically waiting on her hand and foot.

Which means that I'll be stressed out to the max trying to keep the household from imploding, which also means that I'll have precious little down time to do anything constructive with the blog this week.

So if on Wednesday and quite possibly Friday, you see a post that can only be described as "phoning it in", you can refer to today's post for the explanation as to why I'm "phoning it in".

So feel free to send a few positive thoughts towards Connecticut during your day as they'll be greatly appreciated.

Friday, July 5, 2013

More Musica!

See part one here.

4} Megalithic Symphony by AWOLNATION.


This band is one of the current Alt flavors of the month and I bought the c.d. for the song "Kill Your Heroes". They have two videos out for this song, but the wicked parody of Mr. Rogers is the better of the two. On the upside, I did leave a review of the c.d. on Amazon, but on the down side, I gave it three, mostly because they stuck a 16 minute track on the very end, and partially because the c.d. was a bit uneven. Still, this song really kicks ass.

5} So Much For The Afterglow by Everclear


A lot of people think that Everclear was a one hit wonder with their song "Santa Monica" from their c.d. Sparkle and Fade, but this follow up contained a few radio friendly hits as well, like the above mentioned video and "Father of Mine". This c.d. is really solid from beginning to end, and it's one of the few that I have semi-permanently stashed in my car. Art Alexakis has a wicked/poignant sense of humor and it really shows in this c.d.

After patting myself on the back with my purchases, I suddenly remembered that I pulled the old grocery store trick of forgetting to buy what I originally wanted to begin with.

So I dusted off my B&N gift cards that I had received for Christmas so that I could buy more e-books (hah!) and bought two c.d.'s by Gorillaz:

6}Gorillaz and Demon Days


...is one of their monster hits (gotta click on the link to see it as I wasn't too thrilled with what I was able to find for a video upload).

For those of you who aren't too familiar with Gorillaz, they are an animated alternative rock band formed by Damon Albarn of Blur and Jamie Hewlett. And unlike some of the boy band or other animated rock bands that are fronted by nameless musicians, Gorillaz are not.

So while all of these c.d.s will make it to my car, some will make it to my c.d. player in my den, where I'll put them to good use while I'm transcribing something to the computer.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Sometimes A Mind Is A Wonky Thing To Have

I've been going through a boatload of stress as of late and it looks like it will stay that way for the bulk of the summer. The problem with having this much stress (work and home, specifically the wife laid up with a shattered ankle) is that it takes a serious toll on my writing, in that it's becoming increasingly difficult to concentrate on my current project at hand, which is rewriting my self pubbed chapbook.

Because it has become increasing difficult to keep my mind on the task at hand, I decided to think about something else. That something else is taking another crack at self-publishing. Now, unlike last time in which I went deep into debt to self-publish a mediocre novel and an okay novella, this time I plan on spending only what I really need (ISBN number and maybe a cover) to publish a little something that I can use as what the retail industry likes to call "a loss leader".

Which in this case is a couple of short stories that were featured years ago in my now closed short story blog "Flashing Georgie's Shorts".

Over the years I've managed to tighten up and rewrite about a half dozen of my personal short story faves from that blog, and so far, I've found two that I really like and quite proud of as well.

One is called "The Right Thing" and it uses the backdrop of Newington's town festival as a setting for a new romance. I tweaked it quite a bit and strangely enough, it remains one of the few stories that I've written that is not interracial (i.e Line 21) that I'm quite fond of.

The other one has a bit of a convoluted background. Originally, they were five separate two page shorts called in no particular order for this post: Black & Black; Uncomfortable; Wthwyt (aka What The Hell Were You Thinking); Wysiwyg (aka What You See Is What You Get) and Wysinwyg (What You See Is Not What You Get), that contained the running theme of friends with semi-benefits.

About several months after I had posted the last story (August 2009), I got to thinking about how they would make one very cool short story. So I spent the next few months tweaking the stories to make them fit, and thus, a very cool short story was born.

However, having to come up with a good title proved to be more difficult than I thought it would be. For the longest time, the title was "Friends With Benefits", which was a bit too cliche for me to use. Next came a title that I pulled from the underlying current of girl on boy violence (not heavy but more like the modern version of Walter Mitty), "Masochism Has Its Privileges". Appropriate, but ultimately not very appealing to the general public.

Then I came up with the perfect title, "Singularly Married", which was inspired by the final paragraph of the story.

Rolling off, she then gave my manhood a hard squeeze, before giving the top of my sunburned head the briefest of kisses. Then, like a pleasant nightmare, she was gone, while I sat there trying to figure out how, in the span of two days, I had gained a wife.
So for the moment, these are the only stories that I deem worthy enough to self publish as an e-book (probably through Smashwords).

I probably do have my work cut out for me, but I do like a challenge, and right now, the challenge for me is to get something else out there that people can get on the cheap, read it, and like it enough to check out my novel, which if you like expanding your horizons with a never-given-it-a-second-thought genre, may just surprise you in the end.

For those of you who are new to this blog or even new to me, the trailer for my commercial debut, Line 21, which is available not only at all major online retailers but from me as well.

Monday, July 1, 2013

This Is Tech Support?

My computer kamikazied to smithereenies and it took me with it!

Over the weekend, my new computer did indeed kamikazied itself to smithereenies and I spent a chaotic two hours getting it fixed.

Short version on how it broke: I turned it on, it did its spiel while uploading updates, it rebooted, it froze, I did a cold reboot, it crashed.

So the first thing I did after not being able to fix it, was to take it where I had originally bought it from: Staples.

Talked to the tech guy and happened to mention that it was under warranty. He said that I had to call a 1-800 number because if he had to work on it, he would charge me. So he gave me the brochure in question and I went home to call Staples tech support.

After talking with them for a few minutes, I was told that I had to call the manufacturer because my computer had a one year warranty and theirs didn't kick in until that one expired (this is call #1). I was given the 1-800 and transferred to them.

Went through the voice menu and after I'd stated what kind of computer it was (HP Elitebook), got transferred to the business tech support line (this was call #2).

At call #3, I talked to the tech support guy, and we had a pleasant one hour conversation fixing my computer.

Among the wonderful things that I found out from him, beside him being located in Albuquerque (heat wave) was that the warranty expired on my computer about three months prior to me buying it in May. He gave me a number to call on Monday (call #4) to get the warranty info straightened out. He also gave me the tech support number for my computer (potentially call #5 and beyond) should the need arise in the future.

My computer? Well, this major league Luddite did an outstanding job of following step-by-step instructions, which was directly due to me giving him serious information overload on the various headaches that were popping up on the screen, and about one hour after I had called him, my computer was fixed. Don't ask me to repeat what it was I did, but it had to do with using the Windows 7 disc to fix said computer crash.

Suffice to say, I have a new company (Hewlett-Packard) to like and buy products from. I already have a printer from them that is about 8 years old and it shows no signs of slowing down.

I will note that while normally I have a low tolerance of being transferred to multiple places that usually ends up doing diddly/squat for me. However, since this was a brand new computer that I took a helluva lot of time  specifically searching for (I really detest Windows 8 in all of its dysfunctional glory) a OS that my job is already transitioning to and that I had some familiarity with.

Now the only thing left to buy by the end of the year is Word '13 for the new computer, which will make my year complete. Total dollars spent on this new computer thus far:

1} Newly refurbished computer: $300
2} Service warranty: $90
3} Mouse: $12
4} USB extension port: $14
5} Flash drive (8GB): $8
6} Surge protector: $14
7} Word '13: will cost anywhere from $75 (Amazon) to $140 (Staples)

Yay me.

The Legal Disclaimer

All the content that you see here, except for the posting of links that refer to other off-blog stories, is (c) 2008-16 by G.B. Miller. Nothing in whole or in part may be used without the express written permission of myself. If you wish to use any part of what you see here, please contact me at georgebjr2006@gmail.com