Arg, I’m a fool

Howdy Folks. Here’s a little story. A precautionary tale.

I went to edit the book today. I thought, huh, wouldn’t it be cool to try out a different program to take a look at what we’ve written? Maybe there’ll be features I’ve not utilized out there, or perhaps it’ll give me a different view on things.

So I loaded up a program called Manuskript. Since I’m in Linux, and because I wasn’t looking too closely at how to install, it took me a minute. My fault entirely, but once I figured out my mistake it was easy enough.

It’s an interesting looking program, one I’m not sold on yet, but it opened. I took a couple of minutes to look around, then decided I’d try to import my Libre Office document. Well, it didn’t work. I thought, huh, oh well. And played around with some things, but didn’t save.

I figured I’d work out how to use it later, and opened Libre Office again to get back to editing. Uh-oh, the book isn’t opening. What do I do? Will other documents open? Yes. So it isn’t Office, it’s the book’s file. Darn it, I guess trying out new things messed it up.

Now I’m stuck, and can’t work on the book until the co-author is able to give me their back up copy. They worked on it this weekend, so any changes they made I can’t see until I get that version. Perhaps it’s time for a different method of exchanging the file, but then again any way would be just as susceptible with my current work-flow. I suppose I’ll have to reevaluate the way I do things.

Making a local copy instead of trying to edit the version sent to me directly would be one way I could have avoided this. If I hadn’t tried to open the only file I had on hand, that would have been the smart thing. However, I’m apparently in too much of a hurry, and don’t save locally until I’m finishing editing. Yes, I save as I go along, but it’s only to that original copy.

Frustrated that I couldn’t work on the book, I played around with Manuskript a bit more. Starting a new book, or at least working with the little I had for a book, I input some information. I can’t say it works with how I write. I can’t even see how I can write with such small input area’s. Sure it’s fine enough for making an outline, which I’m interested in doing, but making the transition from it to a finished book doesn’t look appealing. Discouraged with writing, I decided to do something else.

Now I’m no artist. I can doodle a bit, but I’ve not done it in years, and what little I’ve done hasn’t been exactly what I wanted. But I figured, what the heck, I can at least sketch out a template for a cover and have the co-author take a look at it. They’re the real artist here, and we’ve discussed how we want the book’s cover to look. So using the little skill I have in Gimp I began.

I was going to just do a collage, and maybe a little background coloring. I started out fine enough, but cutting out things wasn’t going well. Then I discovered an auto cut feature I hadn’t used before. Basically you outline what you want cut out, and it’ll make a path. You can add more points to help clarify lines, and after failing a few times, I got what I wanted. I pasted it into my new image, and began cleaning it up. That was a mistake.

I’m a perfectionist. There were still bits that the cut tool hadn’t gotten rid of, so I started painting them out. Zooming in so close that I could see every pixel, I took my time. Too much time, and in the end I wasn’t happy. Dang it Steve, this was just supposed to be a rough collage of images to represent the vision I had. Instead I wasted way too much time on it, and in the end I just deleted everything.

Basically my productivity for the day is shot. I did this to myself. I hope I learn from this and just work with the tools I have on hand, and don’t try to do things I know I can’t really do. Sure I could take the time and become better at things, but these sessions I have are supposed to be for writing or editing. Instead I annoyed myself to such extremes I lost my ability to focus on anything.

Hopefully I’ll be in contact with the co-author tonight, and can get a copy of what they worked on. If so I’ll be able to work tomorrow, and that is what I need.

Let this be a lesson. Work with what functions. If you are starting something new there is no problem with finding different tools, but don’t think some new tool is going to just work out for you. Or conversely, make a back up on-site. That way at least you won’t ruin the only version you have. Also don’t bite off more than you can chew. I guess I’ll draw some stick figures now. I can do that at least.

That’s all for now. I hope your week is filled with less frustration.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update TLDR: Edited a bit, exercised a bit, watched some movies.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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Daylight Doesn’t Like Me

Greetings fellow beings. I’ve returned once more for the weekly blog post.

So, as is inherently obvious, another week has passed. And yet for me it feels as though nothing much happened. However, I shall try to compile what I may of my experiences.

An outing of sorts was taken, and a lunch of Chinese was had. Fairly delicious, though perhaps noticeable only to me, the rice given was that of the instant variety. Flavor and texture-wise so similar to what can be purchased and cooked in mere minutes, yet delicious as such things go. If not for the meal being tasty, I would complain more upon the expense. Even if not from my own wallet it was purchased. Twas planned to be from my coffers, yet another insisted upon purchasing.

Of course while out I spun many a stop for Pokemon go, and even had my first raid. Easily won somehow, I even got the guardian Pokemon. One I hadn’t collected before, so that was nice. All together profitable for myself who doesn’t actively play any game other than certain ‘mobile’ ones.

While killing time, a couple of stores were perused. Ones which sell used video games. While I wasn’t tempted by the selection, the co-author spotted a couple they wanted. And while checking on-line pricing found a game they wished. Persona 5. An interesting game, though I found it played more like a light novel. However it looks beautiful, and I enjoyed watching the co-author play. Much like watching an anime, though I suppose I could just watch the adaptation if I wanted to instead.

Speaking of watching things, we watched the latest Power Ranger movie. It had fallen under my radar, and I only became aware of it when Movies with Mikey did a watch party for it. It seemed fun, so I had been wanting to watch it. So when there didn’t seem to be anything else to do late Sunday evening, I did.

Now I was never a huge fan. But back in the day, without cable and little else to kill time watching, I had watched several episodes. Perhaps even several seasons, though I never went out of my way to see everything. I had always found it silly, and perhaps that’s why I felt it was okay, even if it was marketed to a younger audience. But this movie, while silly in its own way, was more grown up. Even if it still took lines directly from the original run, they didn’t seem out of place in a more adult setting. Fans of the show from the 90’s should enjoy, though a new audience may not. Still, I did, and any who grew up with it in their lives won’t be displeased by the re-imagining of the universe.

Now I don’t know if it’s because I don’t venture out into the sun often, or if I was becoming sick, but I wasn’t feeling well Sunday. I had felt fine, in fact I felt pretty good since I had gone to bed early and got plenty of sleep. That combined with the coffee I filled myself with, when I stepped outside to join the day-walkers, I was ready for an amusing outing. However it became clear that I wasn’t going to last long. My speech suffered, as did my endurance, and I was left squinting and desiring a nap.

Perhaps because of my shunning of the day for my job at night my eyes have adapted to the low-light levels of the evening. It was tiring just keeping them open, and everything seemed too bright for me. Maybe I’ll have to invest in some sunglasses if I wish to go out during the day from now on. But I had to take a very long nap afterwards, and even then I didn’t feel totally well. Only now am I feeling better, but that may be due to the coffee I consume when editing and writing.

As to editing, last week the co-author and I had a disagreement on the way a chapter was written. They had updated it, making a few lines into a brand new chapter. I reviewed, and at the time I wasn’t completely sold on the changes. I spent several hours changing things, making it to my eyes readable and reasonable. I offered it back, but instead of reading the changes, the co-author took what I had complained about and made a new chapter. I was able to read it today, and make my own slight changes, and while I liked what was written before, after I edited, the new one flows better. But since it’s new I’ll have to take a look at it a few more times before I’m sure it meets the quality of the chapters that I’ve been editing up to this point.

An interesting thing came from all this. I noticed a change in the way I write, or at least what I’m able to write. Thanks to the co-author’s flair for depictions, I’ve been able to write more descriptive scenes. The new chapter was missing a bit of their usual shine, my fault of course since I had been grumpy about changes so they wrote quickly. But I was able to enhance in a way that I never felt I could before. My knack had always been dialogue, and I think that shows in my earlier books with the vague way I describe a scene, as each paragraph was mostly characters talking. However now I notice their lack, and am able to build a clearer picture using words, instead of just implying a world. This is something I’ve struggled with, and have been working on for years. I think I’m finally starting to show progress. We’ll see if I truly have overcome this weakness when I write my next book.

That’s about it. So until next time, have a great week.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update TLDR: Edited a bit, exercised a bit, watched some movies.

Steven Oaks

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Watching Movies

Hello you. I’m back once more for the weekly update.

So of course I’ve edited a bit, but I’ve also started on a new project when I had a bit of free time. This doesn’t mean we are finished editing, just that I’ve caught up with the co-author and I didn’t want to change things while they worked out what they were reviewing.

I’ve explained a bit of the new project to some friends, and they seemed excited for the premise. I still have some things I need to work out, but so far I’m happy with what I’ve put down. Of course I think I can make it better later, but it seems readable so far. Perhaps I’ll work on an outline for it, as so far I only have the main premise, and a bit of the story worked out.

The other thing I did over the weekend was watch a couple of movies. First I watched Ant-Man and the Wasp, and I really enjoyed it. It was exactly the type of fun movie I was in the mood for, and it was all around amusing. I’m not sure why people aren’t excited about his movies, but I enjoyed the first one as well. Perhaps because while it connects to the MCU, it isn’t hugely influential. Though I think we’ll be seeing more of Ant-Man for the next Avengers movie.

So being in such a good mood, I felt I could try to watch the Solo movie that everyone said wasn’t so good. Now I don’t know if it was because the movie right before it had me in such a good mood, or some other reason, but the Star Wars Solo movie was actually quite good. Perhaps not the best movie I’ve ever seen, but quite well done. Good universe building, and all that, and I enjoyed the characters. Yes, I can see that taking away some of the mystery of Han being not so great, but it felt true to the character. That could be in part to them lifting lines Han says from the original trilogy, but it didn’t feel completely out of place. So I’m not entirely sure why it garnered so much hate. Perhaps I liked it more than others because I was prepared to hate it, and was pleasantly surprised. Disney may be an evil corporate machine(I’m just quoting others here), but they can still make a decent movie. But I will say I really wasn’t a fan of The Last Jedi… at least half the film. But we’ll see what the future holds.

I also watched The Incredibles 2. It was fine. Simply a movie, and well animated, but it felt slow in some places. I didn’t hate it, but I think the first one was better. At least it didn’t ruin the universe, and perhaps another film can be milked out, hopefully better than this one. But even if it isn’t, it’ll probably be okay. I still say that first film is the best Fantastic Four movie out there, though I’m quite a fan of the 1994 version, even if it was on a shoe-string budget. It had some of the best lines and delivery out of all the other Fantastic Four movies I’ve seen.

And that’s really it. I wasn’t feeling great over the weekend, and perhaps because of that I didn’t do much, but I’ll be feeling better soon. So I hope you have a great week. I’ll talk to you next time.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update TLDR: Edited a bit, exercised a bit, watched some movies.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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I Read Aloud the First Chapter

Hello world. I’m back again with the weekly update.

So, what have I been up to this time? Not too much really. I went into work for a few hours to train another employee, but what little they didn’t already have down they learned quickly. But it did allow me to get in a bit more walking than usual.

As for my exercise, it was a little lighter than most of my recent weekends. I went in during the day-shift, so my sleep schedule was off. This all means I wasn’t able to get in my regular chopping up blocks to music. So I’ll probably double up tonight with two hours of heart pumping action in Beat Saber.

Also, since I knew my schedule was going to be messed up, I hopped online to chat with a few of my old internet buddies. They were all playing games, and since I’m on Linux, and I didn’t want to invest either time or money into getting something to work, I just sat there chatting with them. In the end, after there were only a few people left, in my boredom, and my sense of trolling, I decided I’d start reading aloud the first chapter of my latest book.

I thought they’d all shout me down. In fact I planned on it. I just wanted to get a reaction out of them. Instead they encouraged me to continue, so I read the whole first chapter to them. It’s basically done, so I wasn’t concerned that I was reading a flawed product, but I didn’t think they’d want to “waste” their time on listening to me. Turns out I was wrong, and they all said they liked it, and tried to get me to read more.

They also said I should do an audiobook version of it, reading it myself. Whoo boy. I dunno about that. Every time I read aloud a book, and think of all the editing needed, let alone the retakes required for it to sound professional, I appreciate the work that the readers and audio engineers put into the audiobooks I’ve listened to in the past. I’m not sure if I’m up to the challenge, even though I do like reading books to people. I’ll think about it I suppose, but I’ll want to talk to the co-author about it.

There’s so much I want to do, but only so much time. I’ve wanted to re-start my podcast. I want to do a livestream where I read my books to people. I want to finish all these books I’m partway through. I want to write another book with the co-author, and I want to finish this book. It just never feels like there’s enough time, nor does it feel like I have enough energy to do all these things. It takes everything out of me when I write or edit, and I need to do something else to recharge. Perhaps I can work out a schedule that lets me do it, but I’ve not discovered it yet.

As for editing, the co-author continues, as do I. I’m not sure if we’re being perfectionists, but I think the product will show the effort we’re putting into it. I’m already back up to chapter 14 again, and it’s flowing nicely. We’ve talked about it, and I think we’ve cut all the slow pieces that were there in the beginning, and have worked mightily hard on the wording. I’m quite proud of what we have, and can’t wait to show you all.

Well, I think that’s it for now. I hope you all have a great week. TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update TLDR: Edited a bit, exercised a bit, watched some shows.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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A Few Shows I’m Watching

Howdy folks. I’m back for another of my weekly posts.

So what have I been up to you might ask? Well, what can I say? I’ve just been doing my normal thing of reading, working, and editing. Also I’ve been keeping up with my so-called exercise. That being Beat Saber for an hour at a time, though I’ve upped my game. I’m mostly using the song speed up feature, on hard mode, and boy can I tell you I get rather sweaty.

If there is another game out there that can give me such a cardio work out in VR space I’ve yet to find it, but I suppose I haven’t really been looking. But fortunately I’ve not grown too bored with this game. Admittedly I’d like a greater selection of songs, though I’ve heard there will be more coming soon, so there is that. I’m sorry about going on and on week to week about this game, but I’ve little to talk about otherwise.

I also noted that the Punisher season two dropped recently. I’ve watched around 9 episodes so far, but if I’m honest I don’t think it’s nearly as good as the first. It’s still good, but I really enjoyed the first season, so I suppose it’s hard to match it for me. Same thing with Jessica Jones, as my favorite part of that first season was David Tennant’s character. But at least Punisher got another season. I’m still upset that there’ll be no more Iron Fist, though again, that first season was my favorite of the two that were released.

I also started the Shield Hero anime. I had read a number of chapters of the manga a while ago, and it seems to be keeping true to what was there. I will say I found the first half of the first episode a little slow, but it soon picked up the pace. The second episode kept up that momentum as well, and I’m finding it a fun and interesting story. As much as any average isekai show is these days are, save for those gems like the Slime anime, and Overlord. Hopefully this one stays entertaining, though I think it’ll have enough viewer-ship due to some outspoken people who don’t appear to be completely familiar with the story.

As for the book, it’s going well. I’m of course still going through it(I’ve lost count as to how many times I’ve re-read it). To me it reads very well, so I’ve not been doing too much to it. I did note I missed out on the use of a word several times in one paragraph today, so I changed that. A few words needed pruning, and some tenses were a bit awkward, so those were re-worded. But for the most part there’s not too much for me to do. All these changes didn’t “need” to happen, but I suppose I’m going for the best version of the story while the co-author finishes up their own edits. Perhaps that’s why they remained unchanged from those previous times I had gone through the story. But I again will reiterate how good it is to have the computer read back what you write. You can more easily hear mistakes this way, and I was able to catch many things I hadn’t when I was just reading the book to myself. So if you are ever writing anything, I heartily recommend using this feature.

But enough of my rambling about nothing. Until next time, I hope you all have an enjoyable week.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update TLDR: Edited a bit, exercised a bit, watched some shows.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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Training and Exercise

Hey there. I’m back, and filled with a void of things to talk about.

I’ve played more Beat Saber, and I’m getting better. Unfortunately I’m not sure I’m ever going to be able to master expert mode. I’m unable to figure out how to move the sabers so they cut properly when there are so many cubes on screen. Fortunately I was able to get through a couple, but that may have just been luck. I will say I’ve got hard mode pretty much sorted, and usually get A’s if not an S now and again. Even when I speed up the track hard doesn’t seem too much harder, though there is a certain track that just likes to spam blocks like it’s expert mode.

So why do I care about this game? Mostly exercise. Especially as winter is upon us, it helps fill in the blanks for my cardio, and as I’ve stated last week, it counts as steps and I can sync them up to Pokemon Go. My weight also went up by a few pounds, and since starting this regiment, along with eating a little less, I’m back down to where I was. I’m still going to see if I can lose a bit more, though I don’t think I’m ever going to get as skinny as I was, I looked a bit emaciated there for a couple of years anyway.

As for my Pebble 2 watch, it appears I can get five days out of a full charge. That’s nice and all, but I was expecting a bit more. I even turned off the back-light, as I can usually see it if there is even a bit of light around, but it hasn’t seemed to extend the battery life much. But I can say it’s way better than having a watch die in the middle of the day. Other than that small complaint which isn’t really much of anything to me, this watch is fantastic. Even though Pebble was bought by Fitbit, and it no longer is maintained by them, there are people still working to make sure Pebbles function. So as long as there are people out there who still have a passion for these watches, I’ll stick to mine. As long as it still works(heh).

Last week I also trained someone. They’ll be working when I’m off, and I had to show them around and make sure they know how to do all the little things I do. Likely it’ll take them a bit to fully understand all the things I’ve gathered over nearly a year there, but I tried my best to at least impart the things I know. The important parts I emphasized, and went over multiple times, but the other small things I mentioned once or twice so they wouldn’t be surprised if something came up. I’ve trained several people over the years, I just hope I did a decent job, and that they’ll not be caught off guard if something new pops up. I made sure they had plenty of information, and that they had a working knowledge of systems and the layout of the workplace. Some things can be frustratingly confusing if you aren’t familiar with how the building is set up, and how it corresponds to the live monitoring system. But since things are labeled, though a bit confusingly, even if they don’t know where a problem is exactly they can report it and others can decipher where the issue is.

Other than that I’ve edited a bit more. Yes, I know, same update as usual. I decided to start at the beginning again(eye rolls for everyone) and didn’t find much that needed changing. I just made the language that much more readable. If I keep this up, the book will be perfect(hah). I’m fairly sure I’ve said this before, but I was thinking about starting a new book while the co-author does their own editing. However, since the little break through the holiday season, I was reinvigorated. I want this book to be the best I’ve written. So I’ll keep working on it until we’re both satisfied. Since we haven’t given ourselves an end date, I’m unsure when it’ll be ready to publish, but rest assured it’s going to happen at some point.

Also my author’s note is more of an afterword, so keep that in mind when the book comes out. Yes it talks about the book and it’s creation, but it has a bit more personal notes in it than just being about the book. I’ll likely title it “Afterword” now. But things are still grinding forward, and the book gets better and better the more we work on it.

Until next time, I hope you have a wonderful week.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update TLDR: Edited a bit, played a bit, taught a bit.

Steven Oaks

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Smartwatches and Beat Saber

Howdy folks. I’m back for the new year.

First I’d like to apologize to those of you who look forward to my weekly post for not doing a great job these last couple of weeks. With work and it being the holidays I didn’t have much free time. That and I didn’t give myself any time to work on my writing stuff. This is my fault, as that time of year makes me want to relax and not do much of anything.

That being said, the co-author put in a ton of work on the book, and edits are moving forward. Today I reviewed a few chapters from what they edited, and things are looking good. This of course means after my little break I’m reinvigorated. So perhaps I’ll hold off a little while before I fully commit myself to starting another book, though I’ve done a bit of work on this new one recently. However, if the co-author keeps up at the pace they’ve been recently, I could see myself just working on reviewing their edits. I’d just be cleaning things up a bit, as they like to add to the story as they go, which means there’s a bit of work for me to look at and tweak as needed.

Now on to a little story. I love smartwatches. My first foray into this tech was the original Pebble. I loved it, but I wanted more. It still functioned, but it was beginning to have issues, and as I can be a bit vocal about my frustrations, my father took pity on me.

He sent me a Moto360, and I wore it for nearly two years. It was bright, pretty, and did all the things I wanted. However, in the last few months it began having issues holding a charge. I looked into repairing it(I would have to replace the battery), but I didn’t quite feel up to the challenge. So instead, I went back to the Pebble. At first it was refreshing how simple it was, and I was quite satisfied by its functionality. I had forgotten that their had been issues with charging, and only after a couple of weeks did it rear its head. While I had gotten it to charge at first, the proceeding times it just didn’t seem to work, and eventually it powered down for the last time.

Then the co-author noting my plight, went to a used tech store and found a Pebble watch for me. They weren’t exactly sure what they had gotten, nor do I think the store knew, as it was a Pebble 2-HR. The very last version Pebble as a company put out. Cheaper by far than I found when I went looking online to see what they were going for these days, so a good buy. Now with a heart rate monitor, it still offers the same simplicity that the original had, though it certainly feels snappier.

Now why am I so taken by smartwatches? To me it feels like having an extra sense. I no longer have to rely on the sound of a notification, I can simply feel it. I can easily glance down and see what’s going on, and I don’t have to take my phone out of my pocket. Or I can simply leave my phone in another room and still remain connected. Perhaps not the best thing for when I’m writing, but I still like to have it. When I didn’t have a smartwatch, I felt cut off. Like I was missing a piece of myself. To me it’s like having a bit of augmentation that I enjoyed removed. Now that it’s back, I feel whole once more.

Another thing that happened since last I posted was I was able to play with a little game called Beat Saber. A VR rhythm game that requires you to slice cubes with light swords. The first time I tried it was with a friends’ HTC Vive, and it was fantastic, even if I wasn’t. Fortunately I have access to a PS4, and at the same time my Pebble watch was purchased, move controllers were acquired. Meaning I could play this game at home now. And boy have I.

I spend about an hour each session slicing away at these cubes. I’ve been getting better and better, and I truly enjoy the music selection they have. There is one down side, at least to me though. There aren’t as many songs as I’d like. If I could import my own music it wouldn’t be a problem, though I understand why that hasn’t been an option. The stages are tailor-made to each song, and then again for each skill level. So far I can generally make it through normal with no misses, and at least make it to the end of each song on hard, but expert mode eludes me. And of course, there is something I call impossible, that being the single saber mode. I can’t see how it can be done successfully. Though I will continue to practice. Maybe one day I’ll get there. And having a smartwatch that notes my activity has gained me more steps and heartbeats that I can have taken down. A bonus to my Pokemon Go addiction, as it now uses my Google Fit data to count towards steps in-game. Thus gaining me candy for my Pokemon, and helping me hatch eggs.

Other than that I’ve done little else, save continue my usual gluttonous reading schedule. I’m around two or three books a week now, so that’s good for my education in story telling, and entertainment. So there is that, though of course when I have a free chance I’m still watching random shows. To list a few that I’ve been watching recently – Lucifer, The Magicians, Grimm, Laid Back Camp, Backstreet Girls, and likely my favorite recently That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime. I’m not going to review any of these here, but I can say I’ve enjoyed each one in their own way.

With that I’ll leave you here. I’ll keep working on this book, and keep reading as always. I hope you all have had a good holiday season, and may this new year be even better than the last.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Doing a bit of editing after the co-author put in a great effort. Trying to exercise more.

Steven Oaks

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Happy New Year

Hello to you all.
 
Unfortunately I’ve not much to offer as update. However the co-author continues to edit and is beyond halfway through their own edits.
 
Other than that I’m just here to wish you all a happy New Year. May this year find you well, and may you have success in any venture you wish.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Author’s Note complete, working on an outline for a new book. Co-author continues editing.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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Happy Holidays

Well here goes.

I’m up late as I write this. Instead of having my usual day off (Monday) I’m going into work to do a 12hr shift, and doing the same on Christmas day. So I’m using this time before to try to get something together to write about.

I’ve not worked on anything book related since last I posted, save perhaps a bit of outlining and character creating in my head, so there isn’t much to report. That’s going well, but I’ve yet to write anything down. I really think what I write next will benefit from an outline. A bit of structure goes a long way in directing a story, even if the characters want to go off and do their own thing for a bit.

I’ve also gotten the co-author to begin reading a book I’d been suggesting/talking about. They seem to like it, as it’s gotten them away from The Wheel of Time series for a bit. We aren’t saying Wheel isn’t good, it’s just long, and sometimes you need a break. So instead they’re reading Off to be a Wizard. A rather funny first book in a series of amusing ones. I’ve already finished them all. We’ll see if the co-author does the same.

And since it’s that time of year, I’m going to tell you what my favorite holiday movie is. Hogfather. Originally it was a novel written by Terry Pratchett, now you can watch it as a movie/mini series, since it’s so long. The Hogfather(Santa) has gone missing, and Death has taken over delivering presents. It’s a fun time, and the dialogue is fantastic. It does a good job explaining why belief is important, and I watch it every year. Well, most years. We’ll see if I get a chance to this year as my time is running out.

Other than that, I want to wish you all a very happy Yuletide season, and a fantastic New Year.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Author’s Note complete, working on an outline for a new book. Co-author continues editing.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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Update: Note and Package

Hello again. I’m back, and ready to relate some things.

So first I want to say that the USPS did deliver my package. I know the problem was likely due to it being near the holidays. That’s never a fun time for delivery people, nor to retailers. But everything worked itself out, and I have what I ordered.

I’ve also completed my author’s note. You might find it strange that it’s done while the book is still being worked on, but for the most part the book is finished. At least from my side. I’ll likely give it another run through after the co-author finishes theirs, but for now I’ll be focusing on other things.

What other things? Well I’ve a few books I could get back to writing. I’m fairly sure which one I’m going to go with, and I’ll start with a fresh outline. Looking back on what I’ve already written I’m surprised there’s so little. Perhaps over the last couple of years I added to it in my head, but never wrote anything down. Hence my desire to write an outline. I’ve already an idea of where I want it to start and end, along with some middle bits. I think when I was first working on it I was simply writing what came to me, instead of having any idea where it was going. Now I think I’m ready to flesh it out.

Other than that I’ve been brainstorming with the co-author on the next book they want to write(we can’t always be working on just one book of course). They’ve a pretty good idea of what they want, but it’s always nice to talk to someone else to iron kinks out. I’ll likely be helping out on their book, though it may just be editing. Same for them with whatever next I write. I did enjoy writing a book with them, so whatever they want, I’m willing.

I’ve missed the more active part of creating when first writing a story. Editing can be tedious, though fulfilling, but it’s not something where you make huge changes, though you might. If your original draft is mostly decent, there’s not much else to do but push on. Then again whole new chapters could be necessary, or things may need to be cut, but it’s nothing like that first draft.

Hours of brainstorming. Laughing at all the silly things that you could include, but probably shouldn’t, that’s what I call fun. Through the laughter a story forms, and you start grasping what your story is really about. I’ve a tendency for the absurd, so I sometimes need to have someone rein me in. Another reason to have a person to bounce ideas off of. Even an audience of one can help you find what should be included, and what you really should cut.

That’s about it for now. If you’re writing, keep it up. I hope you all have a good week.

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Author’s Note complete, working on an outline for a new book. Co-author continues editing.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

ce70Twitter-icon Connect-with-SDK-Welding-on-Google+ Tumblr-Iconurl goodreads_icon_256 YouTube-App-Icon