Indoor Boh, Underway

A few thousand words in, I’m getting excited about this new book. James and I have been tossing the concept around for months, but it’s at my favorite phase right now – enough words on the screen that I have started to see how the pieces are going to be stitched together. The connective tissue is developing along with the sentences and it makes me glow.

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Stopped Cold

So we got hit by this huge snow storm last Friday that dropped about 3 feet on us over night and well into Saturday. Then it froze hard overnight, rained like a mother-fucker the day after that and then it was time for our weekend. On Monday night Dena did the few remaining cuts of Azek that we needed to finish the new galley cabinet while I went on a recon mission around the neighborhood to see if the ride would even be possible the next day. The snow drifts were piled up to about 6 feet on both sides of the roads but the rain had cleared most of the salted roads to be pretty safe as far as I could tell. Everyone that I talked to that had been out in the world-at-large had told me that it was the back roads in the neighborhoods that were bad and we both could only imagine what the back-woods trails would be like so we figured we’d give it try and if it didn’t work than it didn’t work and that was that. The day was bright and beautiful with not much chill in the air so the big melt was in full swing. We packed the trailer up and headed out with very little to deal with outside of the fact that the traffic was a bit intense but that was to be expected, being the first day people could actually get out without putting their lives in mortal danger in about four days. Once we made it to the trail head we knew we were in for a slow slog but what we got was stopped cold. Once it got up to the derailleurs on my bike the trailer then sunk like a rock and stopped me in[…]

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Namers and Describers

Help! I need suggestions on names for my sci-fi worlds. I am torn between names that sound interesting and names that imply interesting meanings…and the perfect name would be subtle implications of the type of society with a real neat ring spoken and neat look written. Planet of egalitarian people – no privileged people, no status tied to achievement or success in competition, loosely organized by agreeing to the planet’s social contract with the option to take a set amount of money offworld in order to opt out of said social contract Planet of competitive people – fairly American standard (not the toilets), corporate ethos used in running everything, status is based on how large one’s influence is as measured by money and position Planet of orthodox religious people – ruled by divine right, decided by council of elders led by specially chosen elder, differences in status are explained through language of morality – the worthy vs the unworthy Don’t worry, it won’t be as simplistic as it sounds.

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Last time it was a knock-down, this time it’s a drag-out…

Now all we need is a fight! It all started out as a regular, run-of-the-beautiful-mill sailing trip. No really. James has been doing the commute between Essex and Edgewater for a few weeks now, but the idea was always that we’d move down to the dock on which he works.  Rain stalled us on the two occasions we’d planned to make the 10-hour sail down. Yesterday was fine, though, and we got out of bed knowing we would be sailing all day. We stowed gear, stored foodstuffs, and worked our mooring lines off the pilings they’d been wrapped around since we moved to Cutter Marine on April 20, 2010.  Setting off, we had no wind and resigned ourselves to motoring out to open bay. The Chesapeake greeted us with vivid patches of blue sky behind the shifting drifts of dense cumulonimbus.  We motored; we sailed; we motorsailed.  The rhythm of wind-building and wind-dying was followed closely by our jib, which roller-unfurled and roller-furled in a flirty dance.  The main sail did a stately version, staying high but pulling in while motoring and drifting far out when sailing – we were broad-reaching all day long. Have you ever been sailing?  It’s a lovely combination of doing nothing and being busy the whole time.  Watching for crab pot buoys, keeping on course, watching other boats approach or glide away, adjusting sail – none of it is stressful.  On a light-wind day like yesterday, we didn’t even observe our usual watch schedule.  We passed the helm off whenever it felt right and the person not touching the tiller was responsible for spotting buoys.  It was relaxing and happy and we loved on each other at every opportunity. Slicing kalamatas to spark up our colby-jack sandwiches – that was the dangerous high-point of the[…]

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Blue Water Dreams, Chapters 1 & 2

Chapter 1 A light breeze floated the jib’s clew high above the impenetrable green of Lake Union. Lania sailed northeast into a cobalt sky unseen in Seattle since the previous spring. She slipped over the little wind waves, the lapstrake planks of the boat’s hull amplifying the whispered flirtation between wood and water. Alone in a responsive boat, Lania sailed across the north end of the lake as though racing, every gust an opportunity and every slack a test of her judgment on sail trim. Fingertips alive to the precise tension on the jib sheet, she milked each patch of moving air by hauling in or slacking the line a half-inch at a time. Slipping from pocket to pocket, her eyes scanned for the ruffled water that indicated air currents. Puff chasing in a long ellipse around Lake Union. Heading south now, rougher water ahead revealed the salty compressed air currents caused by Puget Sound winds circumventing Queen Anne Hill. Many a sailor had capsized in that knockdown alley but Lania could see it coming. The varnished teak tiller rested along her hip, transmitting the Morse code of the water’s motions from the rudder into her listening flesh. Her right hand tugged the main sheet free of the fiddle block’s cam cleat. The line sizzed through a four sheave block and tackle system that quadrupled her strength and made short work of bringing the boom lower and closer to the centerline. Capable hands firmed on the tiller and jib sheet. Lania slid to the starboard settee as the green waters lifted, the peaks lightening to celadon and then growing frothy white beards behind each wind wave. One foot braced on the opposite settee as the small wooden boat began to heel. Forearms and wrists flexed in slow counterpoint to the[…]

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