Dapper Dragon Soaps are live on Etsy

Dapper Dragon Soaps are live on Etsy

The shop has gone live at Etsy, with six varieties of shaving soap.

I’ve also been updating the website with additional information, links, and a soaping-focused blog.

Messed up fingers make it hard to write

Since the start of the holidays, I’ve been having a rather extreme bout of eczema. This has made it extremely difficult to do much writing, either fiction or here on the blog.

NaNoWriMo 2012

Tomorrow begins NaNoWriMo, which I completed back when the earth was cooling and Tyrannosaurus Rex ruled the dinosaurs.

I won’t be participating this year. I have a pretty decent pace going now. I’m frankly afraid that if I worked on something else, or tried to complete this book at the NNWM pace, I would screw it up.

will be trying to write every single day in November, and I’ll be rooting on everyone I know that’s in it. And everyone else, too, but in a more general way.

Literature and the Single Dad

I was a single dad this weekend. My wife and daughters had gone on a mini-vacation with some friends to a cabin up north by the Canadian border, leaving me and my eight year old son home together. He didn’t want to go, and I just didn’t feel like making a 12 hour round trip in a car to hang out with people I hang out with at home.

As father-son time goes, we had a pretty good weekend. It was cold and gray for much of the time, so we didn’t do much outside. We went to the movies, had some good food, watched TV and played games.

I had thought I might get a decent amount of writing done this weekend as well, when Sean and I weren’t actively doing something together. It didn’t work that way. It seemed like every time I would get my concentration focused, I was needed. I was on the hook to answer questions, give advice, help out with tough spots on games, and generally be the dad. My concentration would be broken, I’d be out of “the zone,” and the process would have to start again. My writing output for the weekend was a big fat zero.

There are other writers with whom I interact who are full or part time single parents. There are others who are part of a parenting pair, but who are the primary caregivers. I really have to respect what they accomplish. At eight, my son is in a pretty good age for this sort of thing. He’s no longer young enough that he needs constant watching and hands-on attention. He’s young enough that he’s not yet a social butterfly, or engaged in half a dozen extracurricular activities. But even so, it was difficult to arrange writing around him. With a toddler, or a fifteen year old, it would have been insane.

So for all you single moms and dads out there, trying to write your book and be a good parent at the same time, I salute you. You have a tough row to hoe.

To my darling wife, who goes out of her way to make sure I get time to write: Thank you, sweetheart. I always knew I wouldn’t be able to do it without you. Now I know it even better.

Normally I’d have tried to get writing done after he was in bed, but I had to work a lot of off hours support this weekend. Nothing unexpected, but it made my late night availability spotty.

The Apprentice Progress: 41,983

Amazon Kindle For Android: One-day Review

I have been using Kindle on my Samsung Moment for about a day, now.

In general, it’s a good app. It opens quickly – much more so than several other eBook readers I tried on my phone. Page scrolling is smooth and responsive. It has a wide range of font sizes, and three color options to choose from. I like the white-on-black setup. It’s easy on the eyes and uses less battery.

I had no trouble at all connecting to Amazon and downloading my books. The “Kindle Store” button takes you to the browser. It’s not a bad interface, but I was a bit surprised.

The only issue I have had so far is putting non-Amazon content on the system. I have a ton of Kindle-compatible content that didn’t come from Amazon. Stores like Baen Webscriptions and authors like Cory Doctorow, who allows downloads and sharing of his books for free, have seen to that. I tried copying .azw and .mobi files into the “kindle” folder on my SD card, but so far there’s been no luck. With the .mobi file it looked like it might have joined the list of books, but it was hard to tell because of the endless Force Closes that resulted. I wrote an email to Amazon support, so hopefully they will have something interesting to say soon.

I have had a Kindle since the first generation, and I really like the convenience. Being able to read my Kindle books on my Android phone is great, too. However, if something doesn’t change to allow me to use my non-Amazon content on the system, I’ll have to look into another solution.

Anyone know if Nook for Android is on the way?

Updated 07/01: I received an answer from Amazon support.  Currently there is no way to load files via USB, nor to have files converted and delivered by WhisperSync with Kindle For Android.  That’s pretty disappointing.

Updated 07/26: Acting on a tip from a reader, I tried manually adding .mobi files again.  It worked perfectly.  To add your .mobi files to Kindle for Android, just copy them to /kindle on your sdcard.

2.6.31-22 Killed My Wireless

My netbook has a RaLink RT2860 wireless chipset. When I upgraded to the newest kernel for Ubuntu, the connection died on me completely.

Luckily, choosing the old kernel from the boot menu takes care of it.

No pressure…

My wife has requested a painting from me. A large one. She basically wants a semi-abstract mural. 36X48 or something. Sheesh.

No pressure, though. 🙂

I actually think I have an idea. Instead of a single large mural, I think I may paint a four-piece work (quadriptych?) with one panel each for the family members. Right now I am thinking a 2×2 arrangement.

Maybe I will break out MyPaint and/or GIMP later and do some mock-ups.