mmerriam: (Default)
I made fudge and a cheeseball.
mmerriam: (Default)
I made fudge and a cheeseball.
mmerriam: (Default)
Line edits on Last Car to Annwn Station are finished and returned to Editor Melissa at Carina Press. It should be a couple of weeks before the CEM arrives. I have a week to finish that, then the manuscript will be complete and delivered. There will be a final proof galley, then at last a book. I can’t wait.

My reading at DreamHaven Books was a success. I started off reading too fast, but got my footing and by the time I read from Last Car to Annwn Station I had settled in. Everyone seemed to enjoy the reading, and several folks said they are looking forward to the novel coming out this summer. We had a great crowd, 41 people by our count.

Super Bowl party was fun, with about 20 people at my house, some of whom cared about the game, many of whom did not, and everyone having fun. There was lots a good food and great company.

Had a nice night out with some other local writer folks. Good conversation, goods people, and a smashing beer and scotch selection at The Muddy Pig in St. Paul.

Speaking of food, we have a new Japanese restaurant in Hopkins, Aji. There is nice review here: http://www.weeklynews.com/main.asp?Search=1&ArticleID=8267&SectionID=49&SubSectionID=110&S=1

We went with some friends and found everything cooked to perfection and the sushi bar well presented, with a good selection of excellent and flavorful sushi.

We went to see Bill W. and Dr. Bob (http://www.illusiontheater.org/events/bill-w-dr-bob) at the Illusion Theatre in downtown Minneapolis. This show is well worth seeing, and the discussion after the show with the director and actors was great fun.

The MinnSpec meeting today was a presentation about giving presentations and being on panels. There was some really good stuff, though I feel like we focused a little too much on PowerPoint stuff. I know some people really dig the PowerPoint, but I don’t use it. There was also good discussion about what to do in difficult situations (a cellphone goes off, crying children, that one person in the audience who tries to hijack the panel, that one expert in the audience who asks you the one question you don’t know the answer to, that sort of thing). We talked about different things you can do the make your public speaking better, including joining Toastmaster and taking some basic acting and voice classes. Over all a very positive meeting, plus we figured out the topics for the next couple of meetings.

Getting gear up for Con of the North this weekend. I will be spending my birthday at the Con.

I sent in my panel picks for CONvergence. We shall see what happens.

Speaking of panels, I have my schedule for MarsCon:

Friday, March 4:
6:00-6:45 PM--Krushenko's/Concierge (Room 1332)
Fiction Reading: Michael Merriam

Saturday, March 5:
6:00-6:45 PM--Re(a)d Mars/Taylor (2nd Floor)
Panel: The Woods Are Lovely
How do we create modern fairytales and myths? How do we tap into the primal emotions of fairytales in a modern era?
Michael Merriam, mod.; PMF Johnson, Naomi Kritzer

Sunday, March 6:
11:00-11:45 AM--Re(a)d Mars
Panel: Ask a Writer
Always wanted to know how a novel is born? How does a writer structure their day? Is it all glittering parties and intelligent company? Come ask a panel of working writers anything!
Michael Merriam, mod.; Roy C. Booth, Catherine Lundoff, Anna Waltz

1:00-1:45 PM--Krushenko's
Panel: The Western as Fantasy
Myths about the Old West began before the West was old, making it one of the first shared worlds in American culture. We'll discuss the rise and fall of the Old West mythology, and how it has influenced and lent its energy to current genres including fantasy and science fiction.
David Christenson, mod.; Eric M. Heideman, Michael Merriam

2:00-2:45 PM--Krushenko's
Panel: Writing in a Series: Harmonies and Discords
Writers who have done multiple novels or stories about continuing characters and/or a linked world share their experiences, positive or negative, and their advice to aspiring series writers.
Michael Merriam, mod.; Lois McMaster Bujold, Naomi Kritzer

I’ve acquired shooting scripts from several televisions shows and one from a motion picture. I plan to read and study these, watch several episodes of Being Human, Eureka and Warehouse 13, and then create spec scripts. I am also outlining a feature movie script.

My counselor at State Services for the Blind has, in support of my quest for a part-time job, hooked me up with Lifetracks in St. Paul. My worker there has already sent out my resume to a potential employer that looks to be a good fit for me, except it might be too much travel by bus. Still, if they can find me a possible position before I’ve ever had a meeting with them, I’m impressed.

Tomorrow night I will cook Valentine dinner for my Bunnee. We stay in and avoid the crowds on Valentine's Day. There will be good food and small gifts.

Also, still sick. This is the start of week three. I suppose I should go see a doctor.
mmerriam: (Default)
Line edits on Last Car to Annwn Station are finished and returned to Editor Melissa at Carina Press. It should be a couple of weeks before the CEM arrives. I have a week to finish that, then the manuscript will be complete and delivered. There will be a final proof galley, then at last a book. I can’t wait.

My reading at DreamHaven Books was a success. I started off reading too fast, but got my footing and by the time I read from Last Car to Annwn Station I had settled in. Everyone seemed to enjoy the reading, and several folks said they are looking forward to the novel coming out this summer. We had a great crowd, 41 people by our count.

Super Bowl party was fun, with about 20 people at my house, some of whom cared about the game, many of whom did not, and everyone having fun. There was lots a good food and great company.

Had a nice night out with some other local writer folks. Good conversation, goods people, and a smashing beer and scotch selection at The Muddy Pig in St. Paul.

Speaking of food, we have a new Japanese restaurant in Hopkins, Aji. There is nice review here: http://www.weeklynews.com/main.asp?Search=1&ArticleID=8267&SectionID=49&SubSectionID=110&S=1

We went with some friends and found everything cooked to perfection and the sushi bar well presented, with a good selection of excellent and flavorful sushi.

We went to see Bill W. and Dr. Bob (http://www.illusiontheater.org/events/bill-w-dr-bob) at the Illusion Theatre in downtown Minneapolis. This show is well worth seeing, and the discussion after the show with the director and actors was great fun.

The MinnSpec meeting today was a presentation about giving presentations and being on panels. There was some really good stuff, though I feel like we focused a little too much on PowerPoint stuff. I know some people really dig the PowerPoint, but I don’t use it. There was also good discussion about what to do in difficult situations (a cellphone goes off, crying children, that one person in the audience who tries to hijack the panel, that one expert in the audience who asks you the one question you don’t know the answer to, that sort of thing). We talked about different things you can do the make your public speaking better, including joining Toastmaster and taking some basic acting and voice classes. Over all a very positive meeting, plus we figured out the topics for the next couple of meetings.

Getting gear up for Con of the North this weekend. I will be spending my birthday at the Con.

I sent in my panel picks for CONvergence. We shall see what happens.

Speaking of panels, I have my schedule for MarsCon:

Friday, March 4:
6:00-6:45 PM--Krushenko's/Concierge (Room 1332)
Fiction Reading: Michael Merriam

Saturday, March 5:
6:00-6:45 PM--Re(a)d Mars/Taylor (2nd Floor)
Panel: The Woods Are Lovely
How do we create modern fairytales and myths? How do we tap into the primal emotions of fairytales in a modern era?
Michael Merriam, mod.; PMF Johnson, Naomi Kritzer

Sunday, March 6:
11:00-11:45 AM--Re(a)d Mars
Panel: Ask a Writer
Always wanted to know how a novel is born? How does a writer structure their day? Is it all glittering parties and intelligent company? Come ask a panel of working writers anything!
Michael Merriam, mod.; Roy C. Booth, Catherine Lundoff, Anna Waltz

1:00-1:45 PM--Krushenko's
Panel: The Western as Fantasy
Myths about the Old West began before the West was old, making it one of the first shared worlds in American culture. We'll discuss the rise and fall of the Old West mythology, and how it has influenced and lent its energy to current genres including fantasy and science fiction.
David Christenson, mod.; Eric M. Heideman, Michael Merriam

2:00-2:45 PM--Krushenko's
Panel: Writing in a Series: Harmonies and Discords
Writers who have done multiple novels or stories about continuing characters and/or a linked world share their experiences, positive or negative, and their advice to aspiring series writers.
Michael Merriam, mod.; Lois McMaster Bujold, Naomi Kritzer

I’ve acquired shooting scripts from several televisions shows and one from a motion picture. I plan to read and study these, watch several episodes of Being Human, Eureka and Warehouse 13, and then create spec scripts. I am also outlining a feature movie script.

My counselor at State Services for the Blind has, in support of my quest for a part-time job, hooked me up with Lifetracks in St. Paul. My worker there has already sent out my resume to a potential employer that looks to be a good fit for me, except it might be too much travel by bus. Still, if they can find me a possible position before I’ve ever had a meeting with them, I’m impressed.

Tomorrow night I will cook Valentine dinner for my Bunnee. We stay in and avoid the crowds on Valentine's Day. There will be good food and small gifts.

Also, still sick. This is the start of week three. I suppose I should go see a doctor.
mmerriam: (Default)
I am plugging away on the developmental edits. I should be done with this first pass by this weekend. I've hit a string of scenes that are on the chopping block. Some of them are going to be condensed and rolled together, a couple might get cut completely because neither I nor the editor are sure how they advance the story, and a couple look to be made obsolete during the next pass.

I sold a short story, "Memory," to Ray Gun Revival. It's another bit of space opera, something I write from time-to-time. I'm always pleased to find a home for these stories. For any of my stories, actually. I am always a bit amazed that when someone wants to pay me money for the things I write.

Though it was a tough day, with a household member being terribly sick, we all got through it. The snow outside was just enough to make everything pretty again, covering up the dirty muck. I have brownies in the oven and coffee at hand. I'm recording the BCS Championship game, and plan to start watching it in an hour or so. For the record, I will be cheering for the Oregon Ducks.
mmerriam: (Default)
I am plugging away on the developmental edits. I should be done with this first pass by this weekend. I've hit a string of scenes that are on the chopping block. Some of them are going to be condensed and rolled together, a couple might get cut completely because neither I nor the editor are sure how they advance the story, and a couple look to be made obsolete during the next pass.

I sold a short story, "Memory," to Ray Gun Revival. It's another bit of space opera, something I write from time-to-time. I'm always pleased to find a home for these stories. For any of my stories, actually. I am always a bit amazed that when someone wants to pay me money for the things I write.

Though it was a tough day, with a household member being terribly sick, we all got through it. The snow outside was just enough to make everything pretty again, covering up the dirty muck. I have brownies in the oven and coffee at hand. I'm recording the BCS Championship game, and plan to start watching it in an hour or so. For the record, I will be cheering for the Oregon Ducks.
mmerriam: (Default)
I hate you.
mmerriam: (Default)
Since there is nothing else I can do about the wiring situation today, I'm going to cheer myself up by committing Holiday Baking!

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Sugar Cookies cut in squirrel and lobster shapes. [livejournal.com profile] mrissa, [livejournal.com profile] markgritter, and [livejournal.com profile] timprov know why.
Chocolate Fudge
Fudge Brownies
Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Bars
Key Lime Bars
Cheese Balls
Cherry Pie (but that will be baked Christmas Day, actually).

ETA: 11:35am: Chocolate Chip Cookies are cooling. Fudge is about to go into the fridge to set. Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Bars in oven. Next up: Brownies and Key Lime Bars.

ETA II: High Noon (Calling Tex Ritter. Will Mr. Ritter please come to the microphone) CCPB Bars out and cooling. Brownies and Key Lime bars in oven. First round of dishes done. Resting before Sugar Cookies and Cheese Balls.

ETA III: 12:41pm: Sugar Cookies in Oven. Brownies and Key Lime bars cooling.

I should point out that I'm not really making all that much. Both sets of bars are made in an 8X8 pan. The Brownies and Fudge in a 12x9. 2 dozen chocolate chip cookies and a dozen sugar cookies. 1 softball-size cheese ball. The pie will be a standard 9 inches. It's enough for us and to contribute to a couple of smallish Christmas parties. I want to enjoy baked goods, but I don't necessarily want to gain 10 pounds.

ETA IV: 12:53pm: Sugar Cookie Fail! How do you screw-up sugar cookies? Why did they expand so much! They are not cute shapes at all, but large sugary blobs.

ETA V: 1:25pm: Cheese Ball success! It made two, one softball and one baseball. Everything else is cooling for at least another 30 minutes. I am done until then.

ETA VI: 4:37pm: Brownie win! Key Lime Bars, well, they are not perfect, but they'll work. I may, sadly, have Fudge Fail. It should have set by now and has not. I'll leave it in the fridge overnight and see what happens.
mmerriam: (Default)
Since there is nothing else I can do about the wiring situation today, I'm going to cheer myself up by committing Holiday Baking!

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Sugar Cookies cut in squirrel and lobster shapes. [livejournal.com profile] mrissa, [livejournal.com profile] markgritter, and [livejournal.com profile] timprov know why.
Chocolate Fudge
Fudge Brownies
Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Bars
Key Lime Bars
Cheese Balls
Cherry Pie (but that will be baked Christmas Day, actually).

ETA: 11:35am: Chocolate Chip Cookies are cooling. Fudge is about to go into the fridge to set. Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Bars in oven. Next up: Brownies and Key Lime Bars.

ETA II: High Noon (Calling Tex Ritter. Will Mr. Ritter please come to the microphone) CCPB Bars out and cooling. Brownies and Key Lime bars in oven. First round of dishes done. Resting before Sugar Cookies and Cheese Balls.

ETA III: 12:41pm: Sugar Cookies in Oven. Brownies and Key Lime bars cooling.

I should point out that I'm not really making all that much. Both sets of bars are made in an 8X8 pan. The Brownies and Fudge in a 12x9. 2 dozen chocolate chip cookies and a dozen sugar cookies. 1 softball-size cheese ball. The pie will be a standard 9 inches. It's enough for us and to contribute to a couple of smallish Christmas parties. I want to enjoy baked goods, but I don't necessarily want to gain 10 pounds.

ETA IV: 12:53pm: Sugar Cookie Fail! How do you screw-up sugar cookies? Why did they expand so much! They are not cute shapes at all, but large sugary blobs.

ETA V: 1:25pm: Cheese Ball success! It made two, one softball and one baseball. Everything else is cooling for at least another 30 minutes. I am done until then.

ETA VI: 4:37pm: Brownie win! Key Lime Bars, well, they are not perfect, but they'll work. I may, sadly, have Fudge Fail. It should have set by now and has not. I'll leave it in the fridge overnight and see what happens.

Le Sigh

Sep. 16th, 2008 04:17 pm
mmerriam: (Default)
Untitled Weird West Steampunk Novella


Getting out of the house and working was a smart idea. I finished the scene, leaving me one more scene and the dénouement to go. I'm looking at another 3000 words (and have upgraded the word meter accordingly). I'm just going to have to deal with the fact that I'm not going to finish it tonight. I might be able to finish the first draft tomorrow, if I push hard.

And as for Munkabeans Coffee and Sunshine Café in Hopkins: Reasonably adequate tasting coffee and reasonably adequate tasting food, for a reasonable price, but nothing special.

Le Sigh

Sep. 16th, 2008 04:17 pm
mmerriam: (Default)
Untitled Weird West Steampunk Novella


Getting out of the house and working was a smart idea. I finished the scene, leaving me one more scene and the dénouement to go. I'm looking at another 3000 words (and have upgraded the word meter accordingly). I'm just going to have to deal with the fact that I'm not going to finish it tonight. I might be able to finish the first draft tomorrow, if I push hard.

And as for Munkabeans Coffee and Sunshine Café in Hopkins: Reasonably adequate tasting coffee and reasonably adequate tasting food, for a reasonable price, but nothing special.
mmerriam: (Default)
I have written. I am feeling better than yesterday. Off now to enjoy Korean food with friends.

Untitled Weird West Steampunk Novella
mmerriam: (Default)
I have written. I am feeling better than yesterday. Off now to enjoy Korean food with friends.

Untitled Weird West Steampunk Novella
mmerriam: (Type)
Untitled Weird West Steampunk Novella


I'm going to go make chicken and rice curry for dinner now.
mmerriam: (Type)
Untitled Weird West Steampunk Novella


I'm going to go make chicken and rice curry for dinner now.

Break Time

Sep. 4th, 2008 01:02 pm
mmerriam: (Type)
I'm stopping for lunch, so I'm also checking in before I have to put my nose back to the grindstone.

It was a good hike last night, though I think I may have eaten too much of [livejournal.com profile] markgritter's excellent guacamole, as I'm still burping it into this afternoon. We didn't have time to play any games, but I had fun getting out and walking around the lake.

The kitchen and upstairs bathroom drywall is repaired and I've almost finished the last bit of clean up in my kitchen. I do think I'll be ordering out tonight for dinner, though.

It's been a good writing morning, even with all the distractions of laundry and repairmen and such. I've written a little over 900 words today already. I need to get another 1300 or so words to stay on pace, since I'm already one full days work behind if I want to finish the first draft by the 15th. I just set the (wooden) smoking car of the train on fire, so now my hapless heroes are caught in a "Survivor: Ghost Town" scenario, since the rest of the (wooden) train cars are likely to go up in flames as well. We'll see how much of their gear they managed to save. Oh, and did I mention they are being attacked by a man-eating monster that is immune to standard bullets? They are going to need to be creative if they want to survive.

Good times, good times.

Untitled Weird West Steampunk Novella

Break Time

Sep. 4th, 2008 01:02 pm
mmerriam: (Type)
I'm stopping for lunch, so I'm also checking in before I have to put my nose back to the grindstone.

It was a good hike last night, though I think I may have eaten too much of [livejournal.com profile] markgritter's excellent guacamole, as I'm still burping it into this afternoon. We didn't have time to play any games, but I had fun getting out and walking around the lake.

The kitchen and upstairs bathroom drywall is repaired and I've almost finished the last bit of clean up in my kitchen. I do think I'll be ordering out tonight for dinner, though.

It's been a good writing morning, even with all the distractions of laundry and repairmen and such. I've written a little over 900 words today already. I need to get another 1300 or so words to stay on pace, since I'm already one full days work behind if I want to finish the first draft by the 15th. I just set the (wooden) smoking car of the train on fire, so now my hapless heroes are caught in a "Survivor: Ghost Town" scenario, since the rest of the (wooden) train cars are likely to go up in flames as well. We'll see how much of their gear they managed to save. Oh, and did I mention they are being attacked by a man-eating monster that is immune to standard bullets? They are going to need to be creative if they want to survive.

Good times, good times.

Untitled Weird West Steampunk Novella
mmerriam: (Dark Water)
Good gaming session last night. No one's characters died, even by accident, and I worked the replacement characters into the game pretty smoothly.

I managed to work more on the novel. I've decreased the projected word count. I can see the end from here,including a climatic encounter on the Stone Arch Bridge. But first, a duel in the shadow of the Witch's Hat.

Dark Water Blues


Talked to [livejournal.com profile] darkwolf58 yesterday. I'd forgotten how much I enjoy her company. Dinner and Arkham Horror this evening with [livejournal.com profile] dlandon, [livejournal.com profile] matastas, and [livejournal.com profile] greykev. There will be grilled chicken breast marinated in mesquite, and an Elder God to defeat. Can it get any better?

Off to clean house now!
mmerriam: (Dark Water)
Good gaming session last night. No one's characters died, even by accident, and I worked the replacement characters into the game pretty smoothly.

I managed to work more on the novel. I've decreased the projected word count. I can see the end from here,including a climatic encounter on the Stone Arch Bridge. But first, a duel in the shadow of the Witch's Hat.

Dark Water Blues


Talked to [livejournal.com profile] darkwolf58 yesterday. I'd forgotten how much I enjoy her company. Dinner and Arkham Horror this evening with [livejournal.com profile] dlandon, [livejournal.com profile] matastas, and [livejournal.com profile] greykev. There will be grilled chicken breast marinated in mesquite, and an Elder God to defeat. Can it get any better?

Off to clean house now!
mmerriam: (Default)
Another full and busy weekend planned, with theatre tonight, running the ongoing role-playing game tomorrow, and then cooking out and playing Arkham Horror on Sunday. Somewhere in there I need to set the patio back up, run the vacuum, wash a load of towels, and change the cat box, so don't expect me to be online much until Monday or Tuesday. And then Monday I have an interview and several call-backs to make.

Talked to my oldest son today, he is enrolled at OKCU, majoring in Nursing with an eye toward getting his Nurse Practitioners license.

In all of this, I have managed to get some writing in:

Dark Water Blues


All I can say about were I am with the novel at the moment is: Mwahahahahahahaha!!!

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