“Cut a good story anywhere, and it will bleed.”
Anton Chekhov

author: Nicole J. LeBoeuf

actually writing blog

Cover art incorporates scaled and cropped photograph by Mark Grossalber (CC BY-SA 4.0).
YPP Weekend Blockades, February 18-19: Ice updates; also author self-promotion (this fictionette etc. etc.)
Sat 2017-02-18 14:40:08 (single post)

Ahoy and all that. This post is late because I wanted to include the Friday Fictionette announcement in it, which meant I had to finish publishing the thing first. The text was actually finished late last night, making this one the closest to on-time I've been in, I think, more than a month.

Thus:

Friday Fictionette for February 17: "Known Hazards of Employment in a Pawn Shop" (ebook, audiobook), which has much to do with the oxymoron "an infestation of will-o-the-wisps." I mean, how does that even work?

Puzzle Pirates blockade schedule and sundry news: Blockade schedule below; not much to say about it except it's there and it's hopping. Meanwhile, there have been a bunch of updates to the Ice Ocean that will be exciting to see released in production, among them some improvements to the YoWeb web pages and a "Sloop Mark II" that can be ordered from shipyards just like a regular sloop but which imitates limited edition sloops in floor plan and scene design.

And that's it. Have a great weekend!

Standard reminders: Schedule is given in Pirate Time, or U.S. Pacific. Player flags link to Yoweb information pages; Brigand King Flags link to Yppedia Brigand King pages. BK amassed power given in parenthetical numbers, like so: (14). For more info about jobbing contacts, jobber pay, and Event Blockade battle board configuration, check the Blockade tab of your ocean's Notice Board. To get hired, apply under the Voyages tab.

Doubloon Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, February 18 ***

12:00 p.m. - Ansel Island, Meridian Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Meridian's Most Wanted
Attacker: The Jade Empire (2)
(Not all that hopping actually; MMW does not appear to be defending)

6:30 p.m. - Doyle Island, Emerald Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: Chthonic Horde (1)
Attacker: Keep the Peace

*** Sunday, February 19 ***

10:00 a.m. - Caravanserai Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Cuddly Sloths Of Doom
Attacker: Black Flag

10:00 a.m. - Aimuari Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Illusion
Attacker: A Boosted Monkey

10:05 a.m. - Barbary Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Cuddly Sloths Of Doom
Attacker: Black Flag

12:00 p.m. - Armstrong Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Illusion
Attacker: A Boosted Monkey

Subscription Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, February 18 ***

12:04 p.m. - Kirin Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: The Enlightened (3)
Attacker: Babylon

*** Sunday, February 19 ***

11:58 a.m. - Terra Island, Cerulean Ocean
Defender: Secrets of the Deep
Defender: The Coalition

but i said i would update again so here you go
Wed 2017-02-15 23:13:43 (single post)

I am tired but I want to post because I'm supposed to blog every weekday and I am trying to get back into my routine and it doesn't work if I don't do the routine so here you go.

Update: Writing - Managed to do both fictionette work and freewriting today, and got back on the morning pages wagon too. If I can do that much every day for a week (and blogging too!), I'll consider it a good start.

I'm a little worried about the fictionette because, while I have the premise and the characters, I don't exactly have the shape of the plot. I don't have an ending. I don't even have a good cliffhanger faux-ending. So I feel like I spent today's session trying to perfect two paragraphs when I ought to have been more or less drafting the whole story. Hopefully I'll have a breakthrough tomorrow morning so that Friday doesn't turn into a panic.

In accordance with established Wednesday tradition, the writing took place at the Longmont Village Inn, a five minute walk from the mall's free public EV charging station. This is a plot point because...

Update: Skating - ...I did some. Yes! I got the good news I'd hoped for at my four-week orthopedics follow-up appointment. The PA actually seemed more excited than I was, and that's saying something. She manipulated my leg and enthused over how stable the ligaments were, she congratulated me on all the physical activity I was able to engage in recently, and she said she saw no reason I shouldn't strap on skates this very day.

So I did. I skated from the car (at the Village at The Peaks mall charging station) to Cafe of Life, which is about three quarters of a mile of sidewalks, street crossings, and parking lots. It felt great. I was cautious, of course, I went slow-to-moderate and I didn't do anything suddenly, but within those careful limits I tried out all the motions, deep carves and toe-stops and sculling and single-foot glides and backwards skating and everything, and nothing hurt. Not a thing.

Well, my glutes hurt from yesterday's exercise. I'll admit to that. But nothing injury-related. Not a peep out of the knee, not until I got home and curled it under me as part of crawling into bed and remembered too late that I still can't do it that way, not yet. But that is not a required motion for roller derby, so it's cool.

Yay! Good news. Now I go thunk. Good night!

The fruits of my non-writing labors
Cover art features original photography by author, who can't bear to throw away those tokens despite the video arcade that issued them closing down more than a decade ago.
when writing time turns into time invested toward making the future work better
Tue 2017-02-14 23:52:15 (single post)
  • 1,035 wds. long

Ahoy the actually writing blog! This will be a blog post that is actually about writing. Ok, and about other stuff too, but--writing! Yayyyy.

Friday Fictionettes: So the one for February 10 finally went up late Monday night, and I'm really, really hoping it's going to be the last late edition for a while. It's called "The Gold Drug" (ebook, audiobook), and it's about dragons and dragon-slaying knights and also how you should Just Say No. Cue the voices of Macgruff the Crime Dog, Nancy Reagan, and that voice-over that, while the camera zooms in on an egg frying in oil, intones, "Any questions?" But the wyrmlets never do listen until it's too late. It's enough to break a mama dragon's heart.

I didn't get much writing done today, but what little I did was a solid session on the February 17 release. It will be about... well, take Warehouse 13 but make it a pawn shop. There you go.

Here's the thing: It has been impossible to even hope for a full five-hour writing workday since I sprained my knee. Like I said, I'm still going to all my roller derby practices and Cafe of Life appointments; I'm also now going to twice weekly phsyical therapy appointments too. And the occasional orthopedist/sports medicine follow-up (my four-week check-in is tomorrow). And then there's roller derby events like the triple-header this past weekend and the New Recruit Nights this week. And unexpected naps because I still seem to have only a portion of the energy I count on having in a day. (It's getting better, though!) The only entirely unscheduled day is sometimes Friday, which falls apart under the pressure of "Ooh, an unscheduled day! Do ALL the writing OR ELSE YOU SUCK." (I'm sure I've mentioned before what a jerk my brain is, right? Well.)

So instead I'm just focusing on whatever needs to get done with the most urgency, and taking it from there. Today, that meant a short but solid session toward not being late with the fictionette this Friday.

I honestly thought I'd get more done. I had the time. I even had a sudden surge of energy! Which went toward... improving my living space and fixing things which were broken. Which, honestly, isn't time spent; it's time invested. It's so much easier to get work done when things are less cluttered, more pleasant to look at, and fully functioning. Even when the improvement is to something I don't necessarily interact with every day, but have merely been frustrated with now and again, knowing that it's been improved makes my brain a more pleasant place to be. So I went into the "distraction" with my eyes open. Sure, I thought, I might not get the writing done that I meant to, but I'm going to feel happier and healthier going forward.

Here's a short, non-exhausted list of things that got fixed or uncluttered or otherwise improved:

  • Restored my laptop's ability to send sound to the TV via HDMI, such that I can once again VJ Steven Universe marathons. Or whatever I want. This required rolling back the Intel HD Graphics 5500 driver on my laptop. The "Windows 10 Anniversary Edition" version that installed itself on Jan. 25 can take a flying leap from the nearest high-dive into a sewer, by the way.

  • Unpacked all my vinyl LPs and 45s (and accompanying concert program books, because apparently these go together) onto a freshly cleared shelf below the CDs. Recycled the now-empty boxes.

  • Unpacked the Ion USB turntable onto the top shelf above my desk so it can easily be plugged into my laptop. Stowed the box in the storage closet, along with a few other random objects I've been meaning to shlep down there for a while.

  • Digitized one of my 45s just to celebrate. (The Tubes, "She's a Beauty," 1983, in case you're wondering.)

  • Rearranged my CDs into four columns on a single double-tall shelf space. Placed a cardboard sheet under each column so I can slide an individual stack forward for ease of access. I am a genius.

  • Hung up five things that have been waiting to go back on the walls since we moved into this place back in April 2015. This represents a solid baby step toward emptying the box of wall-hangings that's been sitting in our bedroom since that time.

Now my office and the living room are both less cluttered, and I have the ability to play records in the office. Also it's easier to get to all my CDs now. Also there are pretty things on the walls! So. A sacrifice of potential writing time, but well worth it, I think.

Also, I'm still not on skates yet, but today at roller derby practice I did every single off-skates thing along with my team. Pre-practice warm-ups. Strength training hell. Post-practice yoga. Because it's exciting to be that physically capable again, and because I need to get those muscles back ASAP thank you. This is part of fixing what's broke and creating a happier, healthier future!

My roller derby team is totally my Valentine, y'all. <3 <3 <3

YPP Weekend Blockades, February 11-12: This just in! Corruption detected among Palace staff! Dock officials ACCEPTING BRIBES! Tch, tch, tch..
Sat 2017-02-11 13:43:02 (single post)

So, this is embarrassing. It's supposed to be an actually writing blog but of late there's more Puzzle Pirates content than actually writing content. It would be understandable if you thought I weren't actually writing. I mean, I am, but I'm constantly in "Oh crap I'm late mode" (see the abject failure to get Friday Fictionettes out on actual Fridays of late), so by the time it's blogging time it's also can't-think-brain-melted time. So.

But that won't be meaningfully solved by cutting out the Puzzle Pirates content, so, have a blockade schedule.

In addition to that, we've got some piratical events in the works:

Sloop giveaway (ongoing) - Scarpath of the Emerald Ocean is giving away two sloops each month, randomly and raffle style. To enter, just make your way over to Scarpath's Shipbuilding Stall on Lincoln Island (it's inside Freeport Docks) and sign the guestbook. Drawings will be on the first and third Saturdays of each month.

Egg Design Contents (deadline: March 2 11:59 PM) - It's egg design season for 2017! Clotho put out the call late last month along with all the details. Follow her instructions to submit a flat, wrappable design suitable to be rendered on egg furniture. Winners get a couple of the finished eggs to keep and the Gilded Egg trophy, if they don't already have one.

We've also had a client update this past week, resulting in (among other things) a change to how porting at embargoed islands is handled. You know how when your flag's at war with another flag, you'll find you can't port at islands owned by that flag? Well, you won't be able to port by handing the ship's deed off to someone in an uninvolved flag; vessel deeds can no longer be traded while that vessel is at sea. However, you can now bribe the dock officials to let you port. There'll be an interface for it that appears when you attempt to port at an embargoed island.

OK, so, I'm gonna go play a bit in the blockades myself before it's time to head over to the Boulder County Fairgrounds for tonight's adventures in roller derby. (I'll be a non-skating official in this one, since my sprained knee isn't quite healed up yet.) Then tomorrow it's a day off from derby so I can CATCH UP ON ALL THE WRITING THINGS. I hope to deliver a positive report at blog o'clock on Monday.

Standard reminders: Schedule is given in Pirate Time, or U.S. Pacific. Player flags link to Yoweb information pages; Brigand King Flags link to Yppedia Brigand King pages. BK amassed power given in parenthetical numbers, like so: (14). For more info about jobbing contacts, jobber pay, and Event Blockade battle board configuration, check the Blockade tab of your ocean's Notice Board. To get hired, apply under the Voyages tab.

Doubloon Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, February 11 ***

12:00 p.m. - Corona Reef, Meridian Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Infamous
Attacker: The All-Consuming Flame (3)

12:00 p.m. - Ashkelon Arch, Emerald Ocean
Defender: The Corsairs Alliance
Attacker: Keep the Peace
Undeclared: Spank Me Daddy

2:37 p.m. - Duat Island, Meridian Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: The Enlightened (2)
Attacker: Switzerland
Attacker: Barely Dressed

4:25 p.m. - Doyle Island, Emerald Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: Chthonic Horde (2)
Attacker: Keep the Peace

9:42 p.m. - Basset Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Spoon Republic
Attacker: Legacy of the Hourglass

*** Sunday, February 12 ***

12:00 p.m. - Ilha da Aguia, Emerald Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Keep the Peace
Attacker: The Enlightened (3)

Subscription Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, February 11 ***

12:00 p.m. - Byrne Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Dragon's Quest
Attacker: Ice Wyrm's Brood (3)

12:00 p.m. - Spectre Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Babylon
Attacker: Ice Wyrm's Brood (2)

*** Sunday, February 12 ***

10:00 a.m. - Guava Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: Chthonic Horde (3)
Attacker: Riding High

YPP Weekend Blockades, February 4-5: Blockades on schedule are less urgent than they appear
Sat 2017-02-04 13:21:54 (single post)

Do not be fooled by the blockade activity scheduled on the Cerulean Ocean. The Cranberry Island blockade has been canceled, and Cold Steel will not be defending Guava Island. Babylon are hopping in on Guava, though, so you might find a job with them.

Beyond the blockades, we have a pet auction on the Meridian Ocean on Friday, February 10 at 6 PM, hosted by Infamous.

Meanwhile, it's a new month, so you seal-hunters have a new objective. To win your February 2017 Seal o' Piracy, you'll need to complete one buried treasure expedition. Sounds a lot less complicated than last month's Junk-and-Fanchuan extravaganza, don't it?

Standard reminders: Schedule is given in Pirate Time, or U.S. Pacific. Player flags link to Yoweb information pages; Brigand King Flags link to Yppedia Brigand King pages. BK amassed power given in parenthetical numbers, like so: (14). For more info about jobbing contacts, jobber pay, and Event Blockade battle board configuration, check the Blockade tab of your ocean's Notice Board. To get hired, apply under the Voyages tab.

Doubloon Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, February 4 ***

12:39 p.m. - Admiral Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Rubber Duckies of Doom
Attacker: Pirate King

3:15 p.m. - Tumult Island, Emerald Ocean
Event: 7 rounds, nonsinking
Hosted by: Cluster Service

3:22 p.m. - Doyle Island, Emerald Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: Chthonic Horde (3)
Attacker: Black Flag

3:27 p.m. - Duat Island, Meridian Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: The Enlightened (3)
Attacker: Jolly Roger

3:45 p.m. - Basset Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Illuminatti
Attacker: Spoon Republic

7:04 p.m. - Caravanserai Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Black Flag
Attacker: Cuddly Sloths Of Doom

7:05 p.m. - Barbary Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Black Flag
Attacker: Cuddly Sloths Of Doom

*** Sunday, February 5 ***

12:02 p.m. - Marlowe Island, Emerald Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: Fleet of his Imperial Scaled Highness (1)
Attacker: Spoon Republic
Undeclared: Coming In Hot

12:03 p.m. - Kasidim Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Going Down
Attacker: Caught In Crossfire
Undeclared: Saints And Sinners

Subscription Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, February 4 ***

12:00 p.m. - Guava Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Cold Steel
Attacker: Chthonic Horde (3)
Undeclared: Babylon

2:56 p.m. - Cranberry Island, Cerulean Ocean
Defender: Raising Hull
Attacker: The Coalition

YPP Weekend Blockades, January 28-29: Entering now the Year of the Dark Seas...
Sat 2017-01-28 13:16:09 (single post)

OK, so, I'm still behind on the Friday Fictionette stuff, but I'm going to do a Puzzle Pirates Blockade Report anyway because, hell, I gotta live a little. (Pause for the inevitable jokes about how if YPP is "living a little" then the author needs to get a life. Yes, you are very droll. Ha ha. Also, you can KISS MY RINK RASH.) In any case, the Jan 20 fictionette will be uploaded to Patreon in a couple hours or so, and the Jan 27 one will follow it just as soon after that as I can manage.

So! What've we got? About a kabillion blockades on the Cerulean Ocean, that's what. Also a handful on Emerald and a couple on Meridian. Jade and Opal remain quiet.

Aside o' that, the developers announced something rather exciting last month: Dark Seas!

The goal for Dark Seas is to introduce an entirely new ocean where the rules are a bit different. This shadowy new ocean is a volatile place full of more danger and unexplored frontiers. We are going to introduce some new theme and story elements involving an insidious darkness that is invading the ocean, affecting the appearance of the world and the very nature of the pirates who live there.

See post for more details. It generated a lively discussion, to which Forculus has responded this week. And that has sparked discussion, of course. I'm not going to try to summarize--I, er, still need to read all about it myself. But now you can too!...if you haven't already.

Also, an early heads-up: it's time for the semiannual transfer of ownership of the shipyard shop on Fort Royal on the Ice Ocean. This time around, the shop will go to the crew with the highest fame. To register your crew for consideration, follow the instructions on Demeter's announcement by January 31.

On to the blockades!

Standard reminders: Schedule is given in Pirate Time, or U.S. Pacific. Player flags link to Yoweb information pages; Brigand King Flags link to Yppedia Brigand King pages. BK amassed power given in parenthetical numbers, like so: (14). For more info about jobbing contacts, jobber pay, and Event Blockade battle board configuration, check the Blockade tab of your ocean's Notice Board. To get hired, apply under the Voyages tab.

Doubloon Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, January 28 ***

12:00 p.m. - Kirin Island, Meridian Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Barely Dressed
Attacker: Fleet of his Imperial Scaled Highness (5)
Undeclared: Icy Sun

12:00 p.m. - Sayers Rock, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Going Down
Attacker: Delirium
Undeclared: Sons Of Anarchy

10:01 p.m. - Admiral Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Rubber Duckies of Doom
Attacker: Cuddly Sloths Of Doom

*** Sunday, January 29 ***

10:00 a.m. - Pukru Island, Emerald Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Illuminatti
Attacker: The Enlightened (4)

10:38 a.m. - Marlowe Island, Emerald Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: Fleet of his Imperial Scaled Highness (2)
Attacker: Sons Of Anarchy

11:33 a.m. - Jubilee Island, Meridian Ocean
Defender: Velt's Boiyz
Attacker: Infamous

11:58 a.m. - Paihia Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Dead In The Water
Attacker: Caught In Crossfire

12:00 p.m. - Terra Island, Meridian Ocean
Defender: Infamous
Attacker: Dragon Lords

Subscription Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, January 28 ***

12:00 p.m. - Iris Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Babylon
Attacker: Fleet of his Imperial Scaled Highness (4)
Undeclared: Fallen

5:00 p.m. - Vernal Equinox, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Attacker: Defiantly Deviant
Attacker: Ice Wyrm's Brood (3)

7:00 p.m. - Spectre Island, Cerulean Ocean
Defender: Elements of Fear
Attacker: Babylon

7:00 p.m. - Park Island, Cerulean Ocean
Defender: Elements of Fear
Attacker: Babylon

8:24 p.m. - Nu Island, Cerulean Ocean
Defender: Phantom's Realm
Attacker: The Coalition

8:32 p.m. - Eta Island, Cerulean Ocean
Defender: Public Enemies
Attacker: The Coalition

*** Sunday, January 29 ***

12:00 a.m. - Remora Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Undertow
Attacker: The Enlightened (4)

Cover art incorporates public domain photography sourced from PublicDomainPictures.net
but there really should have been room in my schedule for this sort of thing in general
Tue 2017-01-24 00:53:40 (single post)
  • 955 wds. long

OK so hi again after two weeks of radio silence. Let's skip the part where I whine about being embarrassed and ashamed and not knowing where to put my face. Let's just take that as read. Instead, let's skip ahead to the moral of the story, just put that right in the lede for a change: Do the shit you gotta do today because you never know when you'll be unable to do the shit tomorrow.

It's not entirely fair, as morals go--sometimes you can't do the shit because you have to do other shit, right? Like, catching up on a very belated task. Or catching up on your sleep so you can function. So maybe it's not a moral. Maybe it's more of a strategy, OK, a strategy that doesn't judge you and doesn't say anything about your worth and worthiness and virtue, sure, but a strategy, nevertheless, that takes into consideration how the world works. And I should know by now how the world works.

So. For instance. Let's say I take an entire Tuesday off work--just decided writing will not get done that day--because I have a chance to spend some much-needed, now-or-never time with a dear friend. Well, the smart thing to do would have been to do the writing on Monday because of that. Right? I knew that Tuesday was coming. I'd planned on that Tuesday for the better part of the previous week. I had ample warning time is what I'm saying.

(And it was a fantastic Tuesday. Me and one of my very bestest derby friends went derby shopping, and we had a long talkative lunch over excellent pizza, and we wound the afternoon up with an hour or two of a Steven Universe marathon. I am not complaining about Tuesday. Tuesday was the good part of last week. Please, let us have more Tuesdays like that soonest.)

Then there's the stuff that gives no warning other than this is how the world works, haven't you been paying attention? Like, after my awesome Tuesday-with-friend, I went to what should have been an awesome Tuesday evening travel team practice featuring a renowned guest skater teaching us All The Things. Looking forward to it all day, right? Could not have planned on wiping out during warm-ups and spraining my Gods-damned MCL. I mean, yes, I am cognizant of the phrase "able-bodied" having a "temporary" attached because we are frail mortal beings and time is passing, and also we play a contact sport; this concept actually came up during our long conversation over pizza, OK, but proving the concept was nevertheless not specifically on my schedule.

So I'm not skating right now. I won't be skating for, at a guess, some four weeks from the date of the injury. I definitely won't be skating in our February triple-header. (Which isn't to say I won't be there in some capacity, nor that you shouldn't come out and watch it. You should totally come out and watch it. Depending on what support role I do play at the event, I might be able to be your derby buddy. If not, we will find you a derby buddy.)

This has not exactly freed up extra time in my week. I'm still attending derby practice. I don't have to be skating to absorb skills coaching and strategy, and some of the off-skates conditioning I can participate in. I can be a non-skating official at scrimmage. On top of that, I now have physical therapy twice a week, physical therapy homework, a follow-up orthopedic appointment, and a new twice-weekly upper-body workout to keep from falling too much behind my team in metabolics conditioning.

And that's before we get into how very exhausted I am all the time. It's like my body is shorting my usual energy allotment in order to channel more energy toward healing. That's probably exactly what it's doing. And although I can walk and drive and otherwise get around enough to do regular day-to-day stuff, it takes so much more out of me than I realize until I'm back home and drooping with fatigue.

I know. I'm whining a lot for someone whose injury is pretty damn minor. I mean, nothing's torn (that we can tell so far), no one has even recommended an MRI, surgery definitely isn't on the menu. I'm staying exceptionally active, independent, and productive (aside from the writing). "When are you going to start acting injured?" John asked me a few days ago. I said, "I am acting injured. I'm not skating, am I?" as I proceeded to take out the recyclables.

But that's the thing. It is a minor injury. I would not have thought it would impact my energy levels this much. I probably shouldn't be surprised, but I am. I'm surprised, and I feel flat-out betrayed by my body. And all I did was an effin' plow-stop! It should not have wrecked me!

Anyway.

I finally got the January 13 Friday Fictionette out today. About time. It's called "The Sandpit Oracle" (ebook, audiobook), and, like other fictionettes featuring an oracle, it is told in the second person. I am not apologizing for this.

I hope to get the one for January 20 (a bar-story retelling of Monday and Tuesday) done in the next couple days so I can scramble back onto a proper schedule in time to release the one for January 27 (I have no idea what it'll be about, that's how far behind I am) on January 27, for a wonder.

Also I have people I still need to mail fruitcake too. Good thing brandy is such a good preservative.

YPP Weekend Blockades, January 7-8: We return you to your regularly scheduled interflag hostilities, already in progress
Sat 2017-01-07 13:01:15 (single post)

With the holiday weekends behind us, it's open season on all blockadable islands, and the flags of the Emerald and Cerulean Oceans, at least, are ready to jump back into the fray. And, well, one flag on the Meridian Ocean. If they in fact choose to defend. We'll see.

This just in: There's now a second blockade on the Meridian Ocean schedule! Infamous dropped a war chest on Coming Soon at Labyrinth Moors at the last minute, so you know they mean it.

The blockade on Cerulean's Conglin Island is a deliberate giveaway. Flag Babylon do not wish to hold onto it, so they hit the big red SCUTTLE button to summon Brigand King hostilities to its shores:

However, since event participation is lackluster, and rather expensive in terms of cost to participants, we will be scuttling the island to Admiral Finius. The reason we have chosen Finius is because he is the easiest Brigand King in terms of difficulty.

We want to encourage anyone* to blockade the island. If you want to inquire about securing Babylon's support in a blockade at Conglin please contact Fourteen.

*Excluding Fedorov, you're not a part of the organisation

As of ten minutes to go time, I see no one jobbing in defense of Conglin. Maybe it's too early? Probably not; The Coalition are already on the Notice Board as offering 3K per segment for the defense of Kirin Island. They're loading a War Frigate right now, so get on out there!

Standard reminders: Schedule is given in Pirate Time, or U.S. Pacific. Player flags link to Yoweb information pages; Brigand King Flags link to Yppedia Brigand King pages. BK amassed power given in parenthetical numbers, like so: (14). For more info about jobbing contacts, jobber pay, and Event Blockade battle board configuration, check the Blockade tab of your ocean's Notice Board. To get hired, apply under the Voyages tab.

Doubloon Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, January 7 ***

12:00 p.m. - Raven's Roost, Meridian Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Consensual Restraint
Attacker: Ice Wyrm's Brood (3)

12:00 p.m. - Scrimshaw Island, Emerald Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Cluster Service
Attacker: Black Veil (4)
Undeclared: Spoon Republic

4:27 p.m. - Paihia Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: The Corsairs Alliance
Attacker: Dead In The Water

10:10 p.m. - Marlowe Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Pirate King
Attacker: Sons Of Anarchy

*** Sunday, January 8 ***

10:00 a.m. - Tumult Island, Emerald Ocean
Defender: Spoon Republic
Attacker: Ad Infinitum Libertas

11:30 a.m. - Labyrinth Moors, Meridian Ocean
Defender: Coming Soon
Attacker: Infamous

Subscription Ocean Blockades

*** Saturday, January 7 ***

12:00 p.m. - Kirin Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King holds the island!
Defender: The Enlightened (5)
Attacker: The Coalition

12:00 p.m. - Conglin Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: Babylon
Attacker: Fleet of his Imperial Scaled Highness (5)

12:03 p.m. - Harmattan Island, Cerulean Ocean
Defender: Adept Warriors
Attacker: Eggocentric Eggcentrics

*** Sunday, January 8 ***

10:00 a.m. - Iris Island, Cerulean Ocean
Defender: Bathrobe Army
Attacker: Undertow

10:00 a.m. - Remora Island, Cerulean Ocean
Brigand King attack!
Defender: The Phoenix Rises
Attacker: Ice Wyrm's Brood (5)

Cover illustration incorporates public domain photography from Pixabay.com.
"What the heck does auld lang syne mean, anyway?"
Sat 2017-01-07 00:37:14 (single post)
  • 1,077 wds. long

Ahoy! So. The Friday Fictionette for January 6 is up. It was supposed to go up at 6 PM, taking advantage of Patreon's clever SCHEDULE POST feature. Only apparently I am not so clever, and I thought today was Jan 7. Eleven-thirty came around, and I was pulling up the HTML excerpt to copy-paste into Wattpad, and emergency! emergency! Where is my post?! Ya fool. It's right where you put it: on tomorrow's docket. Oops.

It's up now, though, and it's called "The Land Exhales" (ebook | audiobook | free excerpt ) It is not one of my more cheerful stories, dealing as it does with a meta-fictional land where everyone is miserable, but I like to think it ends on a hopeful note.

I wish I'd had time to do more with today--like take another crack at the novel-in-progress--but I got a little self-indulgent trying to produce a presentable four bars of "Auld Lang Syne" on the piano that I could include. Why "Auld Lang Syne"? Because it's January. Why on the piano? Why indeed. The flute version worked a lot better.

(Speaking of "Auld Lang Syne," this post's title is a quote from Barry Manilow off his double live album, segueing into "It's Just Another New Year's Eve." It may not be a very good question, but it's a pretty good song. "Don't look so sad / It's not so bad, you know / It's just another night, that's all it is...")

Artifacts are not quite in the mail yet. BUT THEY WILL BE SOON.

In other news, I skated on the track at our practice space tonight. The new floor is done. And it's so nice. it's flat. It's so nice, having a flat and level floor. And clean! So nice and clean...

three things i can't have
Fri 2017-01-06 00:47:58 (single post)

Three things there are not, no matter how much I might wish otherwise:

  1. The typing up of a Fictionette Artifact on my typewriter without discovering some typo in the source material, which I then feel compelled to go correct in all three ebook formats and, if I'm very unlucky and the typo appears in the teaser excerpt, in all three places where that excerpt is published too.

  2. Sleeping late without sleeping very late. I mean, I'm either up Right! On! Time! or I'm in bed until sometime past noon. You'd think I could manage to sleep just one hour late, get up at 10:30 maybe, but no. It's nineish or damn near one, no in-between. This is exacerbated by it being an especially stupid cold day outside, highs predicted not to surpass single digits. Also by my having drawn the blinds tight to help keep the warm inside, but with the effect of keeping the sun out so that I can't tell time is passing if I don't look at the clock. Also by my having had trouble getting to sleep, because there is no...

  3. Briefly taking some time in the evening to Work Through My Shit without finding myself continuing to Work Through My Shit in my brain, involuntarily, when I'm trying to get to sleep. Dammit. I put that dratted dream down in my blog to get it out of my system, OK? I was not inviting it, and everything it stands for, to sit on my head until well past two in the morning! Sheesh.

It's OK, I still got things done, including the daily gotta-dos and also the aforementioned typewriter work and ebook typo correction. (This one was just in the ebook, not in the excerpt.) And speaking of typewriters and typos, I'm getting a lot better at touch-typing on the typewriter without reverting to Dvorak every time I take my eyes off my fingers. That means less time trying to coax a just a little more use out of my just-about-used-up correction ribbon. (I just ordered a whole bunch more typewriter ribbon, so there will be a lot more correction ribbon capacity to use next time around. Ribbons Unlimited were having a sale to celebrate the new year. I essentially got 4 ribbons for the price of 3. Ka-ching.)

I would like to get things done tomorrow without any particular adversity, please brain, OK brain, thank you brain very much, good night.

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