jimhines: (Snoopy Writing)

I was testing the solar filter for the camera, in preparation for Monday’s eclipse. We won’t be seeing the total eclipse, but I’m hoping to get some good shots of the partial.

As I was processing the results, I realized I’d captured sunspots!  (Those dark spots in the upper left.)

Sun with sunspots

Click to embiggen.

For those who wonder about such things, this was taken on the 100-400mm lens, fully zoomed to 400mm. ISO 640, f/10, with a 1/3200 shutter speed. I had to set everything manually, because the camera overexposed the shot if left to its own devices.

I think next time I’ll try to reduce the ISO down to about 100 and see if that gets rid of the minor graininess.

Processing involved cropping the shot, noise reduction, and an orange overlay.

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

lil_m_moses: (car2)
The question: buy a new 2017 Golf Sportwagen SE (or SEL or wait a couple of months for the 2018 of either) vs. keep the old 2011 Jetta Sportwagen TDI, with Dieselgate modification

25/34 EPA mpg gasoline (more fuel use) vs. 29/39 --> 27/37 EPA mpg diesel (more efficient, but usually more expensive): sample guesstimate for 12k miles $911/yr at 27 mpg and $2.05/gal vs. $850/yr at 31 mpg (reduced from 33) and $2.20/gal
13.2 gal tank vs. 14.5 gal
6 (or 7) years newer, including improved tech, for ~$10-15k after Dieselgate buyback
66.5 cu. ft. seats-folded volume vs. 66.9 cu. ft.
179.6 in. long vs. 179.4 in. long
3120 lb curb weight vs. 3285 lb
35.8 ft. turning radius vs. 35.8 ft.
$50ish/yr TX inspection fee vs. $10/yr TX inspection fee
1.8 L turbo vs. 2.0 L turbo
170 hp @ 4500 rpm vs. 140 hp @ 4000 rpm
maybe marginally faster 0 to 60 time on the gas version
lil_m_moses: (tivo)
Assuming we haven't all been nuked by North Korea or murdered by nazis by then, here's a reminder to myself about upcoming things I need to set my TiVo for (more titles to come) to escape reality for a little while:

- Star Trek: Discovery, CBS, 9/24 premiere
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lil_m_moses: (chomp)
Breaking News: The Dump finally explicitly said racists are bad, 2 _days_ after they beat and killed people in the name of MAGA. And it wasn't even the leading topic of his speech. What a festering asshole.

EDIT: and then he basically took it back again the next day. I just can't even...
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lil_m_moses: (to-do)
All the time: step up the hunt

Read more... )

Wednesday
- work on minisim evals: 5 (waiting on supervisor feedback), 6 (waiting on supervisor feedback), 8
- finalize minisim 10 updates
- work on minisim 7 prep
- deposit checks
- utilities spreadsheet update
- read more of book

Read more... )

Sometime These 2 Weeks (ideally, tasks to be assigned to days as I go)
- make plans to hang out with J
- get VW letter notarized
- figure out when to take car in for mods
- call arborist to come prune dead stuff, raise canopy, trim side oak back from house
- call Mo's general contractor and the one I found an ad for, and maybe try that website again with a different need path, to arrange for hall bath remodel/plumbing fix/mold cleanup, and to arrange for living room ceiling mold remediation and rebuild
- call Mo's financial planner - time to get help with lining up our ducks
- schedule massage w/ gift cert - call to see if they'll even honor that gift cert
- get new passport photo taken
- more stuff off big list as inspiration/time dictates
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silentq: (post via email)
Just got my week's summary from the work time tracker program: 51:20. No wonder I'm exhausted. Turns out weekends are useful for rest and recovery, and I didn't really get one. Add in losing a filling and ripping up my shin and the weekend really only had a couple of highlights. Read more... )
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jimhines: (Snoopy Writing)

Some of you might remember me talking about a 15,000-word novelette I was working on between wrapping up Terminal Alliance and starting on Terminal Uprising.

That novelette is called “Imprinted,” and it’s the next Magic ex Libris story.

It’s about Jeneta Aboderin, and it’s set roughly eight months after the events of Revisionary.

I haven’t set a publication date yet. There’s a bit of work left to get everything ready, and with Terminal Alliance coming out in November, I’m guessing it will be available in January or February.

I also haven’t set a price. $2.99 would be ideal, because that’s where ebook royalty rates jump from 35% to 70%. What do you think? Does $2.99 seem fair for a 15,000-word story, or should I bump it down to $1.99 and take the royalties hit?

Finally, as long as you’re here, what do you think of the not-quite-finalized cover?

Imprinted Cover: Draft

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

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copperbadge: (radiofreemondaaay)
Good morning everyone, and welcome to Radio Free Monday!

Ways To Give:

Anon linked to a fundraiser for Mike "Mictlan" Marquez, one of the MCs in the rap co-op Doomtree (featured several times on Welcome to Night Vale's weather reports). He was recently diagnosed with type 1 Diabetes and like many artists is uninsured; he's expecting significant expenses for treatment he's already had (an ER visit and Diabetic Ketoacidosis) as well as ongoing treatment. You can read more and support his medical fundraiser here.

[profile] demond119 is raising funds with husband Jeremy to help with after-care costs of his heart transplant; he's currently on the waiting list at the Mayo Clinic, and once he has the transplant, he will need an extended stay at a transplant house (Gift of Life) for several months. You can read more and reblog here and support the fundraiser here.

[profile] emeraldonyxdragon is raising funds to support herself while studying in London this fall. She was accepted to a graduate program there but her savings have gone to help her parents with debts; in joining the program she would also be able to escape an abusive household. To help raise awareness, she is holding a contest -- reblogs and likes on her fundraising post could win you a fanfic of your choice. You can support the fundraiser directly here.

[tumblr.com profile] rilee16 is struggling to cover medical expenses after two head injuries last year, and has a fundraiser running to cover living expenses, previous medical bills, and a recent rent increase. You can read more and help out here.

Activism

We're all aware of what happened in Charlottesville this weekend; there are some concrete ways to take action here and orgs to support here and just in case you need a little encouragement here is Asiatic Clam Man to remind you that you can do it.

Buy Stuff, Help Out:

[tumblr.com profile] magpiesmiscellany has a selection of tree-of-life pendants in various shapes, colors, and sizes for sale, with proceeds going to Planned Parenthood, Lambda Legal, the ACLU, Doctors Without Borders, Earthjustice, Sierra Club, and the National Immigration Law Center. You can read more and purchase them here.

News To Know:

Leverage Big/Mini Bang signups are open! I ran RFM items letting people know about the Bang for a few weeks, and now you can register to participate. You can read more and sign up here (sign up links are at the bottom of the post -- at least on my screen they don't actually look like links but they are, I promise!)

And this has been Radio Free Monday! Thank you for your time. You can post items for my attention at the Radio Free Monday submissions form. If you're not sure how to proceed, here is a little more about what I do and how you can help (or ask for help!). If you're new to fundraising, you may want to check out my guide to fundraising here.
copperbadge: (Default)
I am home! 

I broke camp around six this morning, and when I started the hike it was 6:35 exactly, because I for once had the presence of mind to log it. Just getting to the trailhead was a couple of miles, due to some unforeseen obstructions (I did not get lost, there were just two unexpected fences, and also a long stretch of “closed” road that was a weird little detour through a post-apocalyptic landscape), so while I had planned to do about six miles, I ended up doing a little over eight and a half in three and a half hours, which considering I was carrying a 40lb pack I think was pretty good. 

I missed the 9:49 train to Chicago by two minutes. I literally saw it pulling away from the station as I arrived. The next train was at 1:15, but it’s just as well I was delayed, since it meant I got to rest my feet for a while and also got to help at least a half dozen people figure out a) how the train worked, b) how much tickets were, and c) which train to get on. 

So, I think the trip was a success. I worked out how the camp-reservation system at Dunewood functions, I tested out all my equipment (all remarkably functional, though I think I need to work on sleeping comfort issues), and I measured my endurance limit for hiking with a weighted pack. 

It is about eight miles. That last half mile nearly killed me. 

Also I got to return the Diane Mott Davidson book to the donation rack so someone else can enjoy it, and I added a book or two as well, which is a good thing since someone just offloaded a shitload of Clive Barker and it’s nice to have a little variety. 

Now I am going to sit on the sofa, possibly order a pizza, and deliberately not empty out my pack until tomorrow. 

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lil_m_moses: (peace)
Fucking nazis driving into crowds of people who dare to think that all people are worthwhile. How despicable can you get? It makes me sick. At least they caught the prick. I hope they nail him to the wall. Hopefully they can figure out how to do that without making him a martyr. (The initial set of charges are less than I'd hoped: 2nd degree murder, 3 counts of malicious injury, and leaving the scene of a fatal accident. Where's the domestic terrorism charges? What about the other dozen+ injured people?) And The Dump's weak-ass response just makes me livid - he's a narcissistic, two-faced, rambling, incompetent, enabling motherfucker.

P.S. Don't get me wrong, I'm pissed off and sick about all of the other bullshit that went down this weekend, too, but the car attack was the diarrhetic ganache on the shit cake.
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jimhines: (Snoopy Writing)

Friday thinks this next scene needs more elephants.

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

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copperbadge: (Default)
So I got my new temporary crown put on my molar today.  

Me before the procedure: So are you taking off the old one and putting on a new one, or just like, remolding the old one?

Dentist: We’re putting on a new one. Unless we can somehow fit your head in an eight thousand degree oven.

Me: Don’t do that. I sunburn easily. 

At which point the dental assistant lost her shit and let out the loudest cackle I’ve ever heard in a dental office. 

They put the temporary crown on and told me to bite down to affix the glue, but when I bit down I cracked the damn crown in half. Apparently it was a defective crown, but many jokes were made about my jaw strength and how maybe I should fuckin’ relax a little if I can bite through a crown while off my face on nitrous. 

Even with insurance it ran me $400 for the temporary crown, the permanent crown, and a surcharge for nitrous (because fuck having dental procedures without nitrous). That hurt worse than my tooth does. Fortunately for my pocketbook I have a medical flex-spending card, but I used up the last of it today, so let’s all hope I don’t break any limbs between now and January. I’ve gone over a year without having to have surgery upon my insides or a cast affixed to my person, so I think we can keep the streak alive. Traditionally I only get seriously injured in the summer months at any rate, so there’s that at least. 

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copperbadge: (Default)
I am going CAMPING this weekend, I am DETERMINED, and I take it as a sign that after having bought a whistle and promptly lost it, when repacking my backpack tonight I FOUND IT AGAIN. (It was, for some reason, in the very bottom of the bag. Why would I put it there? Nobody knows.) 

I have the third Diane Mott Davidson book from the library, ready for reading, and also I’ve packed the second book and an additional book to leave at the Dune Park train stop, to repay the world for the joy I had from reading Dying For Chocolate. 

I have spent all summer doing recon and building up my supply stash, and now I AM READY. 

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jimhines: (Snoopy Writing)

ETA: Dragon Con has reconsidered.

“[O]ver the last couple of days, we got an earful from our fans and others. The issue also caused a second author to ask us to remove her book from the ballot as well. We’ve reconsidered and changed our mind.”

ETA2: John Scalzi has also reconsidered, and will now remain on the ballot.

###

The Dragon Awards were created last year to recognize the best SF/F books, comics, games, TV, and films of the year. Nomination and voting are open to anyone and everyone, and the awards are presented at Dragon Con.

The ballot this year appears to be a mix of genuinely popular work and works where individual authors or groups campaigned hard to get nominated. File 770 published an analysis looking at Goodreads, Library Thing, and Amazon review numbers of the different nominees. I trust folks can draw their own conclusions.

On August 4, finalist Alison Littlewood posted that she was withdrawing her book from consideration. She notes:

“While this would normally be a great pleasure, it has also been brought to my notice that my book has been selected by a voting bloc who are attempting, for reasons of their own, to influence the awards outcome. Essentially, the same group who set out to fix the Hugo Awards are now encouraging their supporters to follow their voting choices in the Dragon Awards.”

Two days ago, finalist John Scalzi also withdrew his book from the award, saying in part:

“The reason is simple: Some other finalists are trying to use the book and me as a prop, to advance a manufactured ‘us vs. them’ vote-pumping narrative based on ideology or whatever. And I just… can’t. I don’t have the interest and I’m on a deadline, and this bullshit is even more stale and stupid now than it was the several other times it was attempted recently, with regard to genre awards.”

Rather, Littlewood and Scalzi tried to withdraw from the award. But according to a follow-up post from Littlewood, Pat Henry of the Dragon Awards is “declining” these requests. Both Scalzi and Littlewood’s books still appear on the ballot.

Henry’s statement, as posted on Littlewood’s blog, claims:

“We are aware of the rabid puppies and justice warriors efforts to effect the voting and we go through a number of steps to avoid ballot stuffing or other vote rigging behaviors.  While we didn’t start the Dragon Awards to foil these two groups, we believe that as we add voters, they will become irrelevant in the our awards.”

Note the false equivalence of rabid puppies, a self-proclaimed group created by Theodore Beale, with “justice warriors,” generally used as an insult against people speaking up for greater representation and inclusion. The rabid puppy slate was posted on Beale’s blog back in June. I’m curious where the equivalent “justice warrior” slate supposedly appeared…

Henry might be right that, when and if the awards add enough voters, slates might become irrelevant. Or they might not. But in either case, that hypothetical future doesn’t change the fact that right now, the awards are a mess, some of the campaigning is ugly, nasty, and hateful, and some authors don’t want to be dragged into that cesspool.

I hope Pat Henry and Dragon Con will reconsider their decision.

 

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

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jimhines: (Snoopy Writing)

Terminal Alliance Cover Art by Dan Dos SantosNewsletter subscribers got to see this last week, but for everyone else, I’ve posted the first chapter of Terminal Alliance for your reading enjoyment!

(At least, I hope you enjoy it…)

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

copperbadge: (Default)
I stopped at Trader Joe’s on the way home tonight and bought a box of mushrooms, two chicken breasts, a bottle of General Tso’s sauce, and a ciabatta baguette. (Bet some of you didn’t even know you could get a ciabatta baguette, but you can! Delicious cultural blasphemy!) 

I came home, chopped up the chicken and mushroom, stir-fried them with some roasted garlic, added the sauce, and ate the results with avocado slices on the ciabatta baguette. I am telling you all this in the spirit of bragging because it was AMAZING. 

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copperbadge: (radiofreemondaaay)
Good morning everyone, and welcome to Radio Free Monday!

Ways To Give:

[personal profile] spasticat has been unemployed since October of last year, and while she's been actively looking for work, her benefits and savings have run out; she's raising funds for utilities, medication, and rent. You can read more and support her YouCaring here.

Helen moved with her family to Reno in March, tranferring to a good job with a company she's been with for four years. However, the affordable housing crisis in Reno is so bad that she is forced to live out of a motel while on the waiting list for several apartment complexes. The cost of this housing is preventing her from saving enough to be able to pay for a place when one finally becomes available, so she's raising funds for first month, last month, and security deposit. You can read more and support her GoFundMe here.

[tumblr.com profile] rilee16 is struggling to cover medical expenses after two head injuries last year, and has a fundraiser running to cover living expenses, previous medical bills, and a recent rent increase. You can read more and help out here.

Buy Stuff, Help Out:

[tumblr.com profile] we-are-valid has launched its Indiegogo pre-order campaign for their first piece of gender affirming shapeware in its new line, Post Secondary. This is "Alex", tucking panties designed by transfeminine people as a solution to a lot of the issue previous tucking shapeware had (expensive, non-breathable, chafing). You can read more, support the IndieGoGo without purchasing, or preorder a pair here. (there's also a super cool t-shirt you can get if you support at the $20 level.)

[tumblr.com profile] magpiesmiscellany has a selection of tree-of-life pendants in various shapes, colors, and sizes for sale, with proceeds going to Planned Parenthood, Lambda Legal, the ACLU, Doctors Without Borders, Earthjustice, Sierra Club, and the National Immigration Law Center. You can read more and purchase them here.

News To Know:

Carter let me know that the Leverage Big/Mini Bang signups are open! I ran RFM items letting people know about the Bang for a few weeks, and now you can register to participate. You can read more and sign up here (sign up links are at the bottom of the post -- at least on my screen they don't actually look like links but they are, I promise!)

And this has been Radio Free Monday! Thank you for your time. You can post items for my attention at the Radio Free Monday submissions form. If you're not sure how to proceed, here is a little more about what I do and how you can help (or ask for help!). If you're new to fundraising, you may want to check out my guide to fundraising here.

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