In the ink well

Dog Ear

February 16, 2017

Gone in Sixty Seconds (DOG EAR)

’ve had service interruptions on the site before. From time to time my Amazon links suddenly stop working. I’ll notice that instead of profit-generating links to my books, I’ll end up with generic orange-box links to Amazon-in-general. Usually in an hour, maybe a half-day, the links return. So last Thursday when I found my site replaced by a 500 internal error page, I figured GoDaddy was at fault. There was also a chance that our information security people here at work had gotten even more draconian and had deemed my home site a threat. Decided to wait it out and […]
February 9, 2017

Moon Scout (DOG EAR)

as engaged in one of my more relaxing hobbies, astronomy, the other night. While waiting for Orion to come up (so I could look under his belt – I’m a nasty man) I swung the barrel on the moon. Always a favorite place to see things, and I really wanted to try out my new eyepieces. Okay, so I know there are astronomers with big trench-mortar tubes that can see that golf ball  Alan Shepard whacked. Very good. But with my new eyepiece giving me a CLEAR view at 120x (a big improvement), I can see things pretty well lunar-wise. […]
February 2, 2017

A charm (DOG EAR)

eah, third time. Was relaxing on my vacation. Woke up and thought, I just finished that Orion Nebula book. Need to knock out a review before I forget too much. What could be nicer, more “writery” than to sit in a side bedroom looking at rain and sea and write a wonderful review? I just needed a tweed jacket and I’d be set. The cat even curled up on my lap. So, wrote out a brilliant first two paragraphs, describing the first time I’d seen the nebula with my scope. What was that big orange star called? Like bug-juice something-r-other? […]
January 26, 2017

Quiet (DOG EAR)

eaders and their writers (or is that the other way round?) share two things in common. First off, they create imaginary places peopled by characters. As a work is written and as it is read, these phantomtastical realms slowly form. Interestingly, they are different for different people. I’m sure that the image a writer holds while creating a moment is different from what the reader experiences in the read. And that’s fine. Really, as long as point and plot are met, who cares if the hero looks like Brad Pitt, Ricardo Montalban or that boy you dated in high school? […]
January 19, 2017

Fate (DOG EAR)

‘ve mentioned before the sad story of my professional literary arch. If you don’t recall it, let’s do it again. It’s a tale near and dear to my heart. Anyway, had an agent who placed Fire and Bronze with a publisher. Everything was going great. Had the final proofs in. Looking on their site, they were already putting out information about my book, billing me as their “rising star of historic fiction”. Wonderful! My agent noted that they wanted more historical fiction from me and so I started putting together Wenamon, a project I had a real interest in. It […]
January 12, 2017

Grateful (DOG EAR)

ery nice lunch the other day. An old friend – a really old friend – a guy I knew like 30 years ago – contacted me and wanted to have lunch. Sure, love to. Then he mentioned that he would like to have me sign a book for his son. (yeah, it has been that long). So sure, we met and I signed the book with a big flourish and all sorts of personalized jokes – I love signing books. We ended up chatting about things, some of which will follow in the next DOG EAR. But that was the […]
January 5, 2017

Desperate (DOG EAR)

eadline okay write something think think think think something that happened and what it means think think think write something anything something anything the only goddamn reason this page is filling up is that its double-spaced. how can i write several paragraphs about something when i don’t know what to write about? has anything happened? book in the mail? amazon intrusion? witty phrase? richard adams died. but nobody knows what watership down is. and I’ve already bitched about that one two years ago. crap, but the bottom of the page is a long way off. so this is writing. having […]
December 29, 2016

Personalized (DOG EAR)

’ve always said that I like books as presents. If there is something you’ve read that you really enjoyed and you’ll think I’ll enjoy it, by all means, send it. Why people don’t give books more as Christmas presents, I’ll never know (well, I do – most people haven’t read a book since high school yet have watched all the Marvel action movies). Interesting thing I noticed, though. Just got a book for my birthday from my best friend, titled Algorithms to Live By. It’s an interesting study he enjoyed and so he told Amazon (that magic genie of wish fulfillment […]
December 22, 2016

Lent (DOG EAR)

was brought up Methodist. But a very unstrict Methodist (that must have my ancestors rolling in their graves – they used to be stump preachers) since I didn’t even know we practiced Lent. Really. The first time I even considered practicing Lent (and the idea of sacrificing something for the good of your personal well-being, if not your soul) came as a bet from a Catholic friend of mine (she’s so Catholic, I’m wondering if she doesn’t patrol the city’s rooftops in the moonlight with a cape). But there I go again. It’s what I do. I’m a natural storyteller. […]
December 15, 2016

Deadline (DOG EAR)

have to admit that I’m rather surprised at some of the web-efforts I follow, and how prompt they often arn’t. Specifically, the well-known XKCD and lesser-known Two Guys and a Guy – I love both strips, but recently they’ve been a little… off… in their publishing schedules. Others (Penny Arcade as well as anything “officially” syndicated) are always there. And that got me to thinking about my own blogging. I always blog – maybe nobody reads them (actually I just checked – most of them get about 500 hits or so. Whether that’s actual readers around the world or creepy […]