Friday, December 10, 2010

Friday night. A week has gone by.

I have been letting my mind wander through all of the projects we are working. The trickiest part is trying to make sure they all fit together as a smooth whole.

I know people are going to wonder about some of the basic sets we are doing. In the fullness of time we will run out of Decks. We will need to have basic cards in place to make the game run when that happens. It means that we do basic sets to prep for that day and even begin a transition now rather than waiting and having a jarring shift. We will also be doing some cards that duplicate existing cards. We will need those when the originals are gone. Many of the old cards will not be duplicated, but they will still be valid.

Looking forward to the holiday here at the Clanhold. Meeting with some Necromancers friends this weekend.

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, December 6, 2010

The lights are flickering, there is hope!

I do believe the necromancers chasing me have finally slackened their search. I am dug deep in the Secret Clanhold. Communications have been difficult, but a few spirit messengers have found their way in and out of the clanhold, but I am not sure I trust the stories they bring me.

You can not really be doing that! The way it was told to me, well, it just does not seem to me that that position is possible. Ok, I will try it..

-- Post From My iPad

Friday, November 26, 2010

The aftereffects of Thanksgiving

I am supposed to be packing and shipping a series of orders from Midwest Furfest, the past week and an error I made. I should also be getting more of the Guild memberships in the mail. I have a dozen ready to go, but in the meantime we have about 20 more that have come in.

The real problem is not the time needed, it is that after yesterday's eating festival my whole system wants to lean back and do nothing. We will see how I do...

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Thanksgiving seems to have started as a day of thanks by a Puritanical Christian cult. A cult which had found freedom from repression in Europe.

I too want to celebrate that we, as Americans, are free of government repression, free of government religion and free to be secure in our own homes. I want to give thanks that in our free nation I can speak my mind in complete security that my friends, neighbors and government will defend my rights to be different, to believe different and act different. My ability to experience freedom is still a part of my life, but today we must fight bigotry, greed, and the Oligarchs for the right to be free. Now we will find out if the founders of a free nation wasted their efforts, or if we will support them.

-- Post From My iPad

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Quiet, the place is so quiet.

Sue is off at Midwest Furfest, where she is having a good weekend. Tonya is doing great. At the last report she has added eight new people to the Guild. That is great.

I have not been blogging much the past few days, the summer of running seems to have taken a toll. The body is doing everything in it's power to make me rest. I work for an hour and my eyes begin to close, pains rustle through the old joints and I lay down for a couple of hours. I really need to smell the roses more often, life is too good to spend it just working, living life needs to be added.

I have dug out the ten old NFS items that have not been around in ages. I am going to rework them and we are going to have to look for eight more along the same lines to get the tenth one republished.

In the "old" days we had to restrict items by rules. With the new system we can price them and just drain them on a Terrible Two. I am thinking that there should be a second roll here to try to restart the item. Ruining an item one in 36 uses is too much. I am thinking a second d6 roll where on a one the item has been worn out. That would work out to once in 216 uses. If you used an item 6 times during each nights play the item, on average, will last 36 adventures.

Well, that is it, I need a nap.

-- Post From My iPad

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Organizing the Day

It is morning. The day lies before our sleepy eyes. The coffee has been inserted but, as of now, it is having little effect.

Stagger down the stairs, past the scowling skulls, around the waiting dog, through the half materialized spirit, to the coffee pot. Make more coffee, start the dishes. Wish one of these spirits could do dishes. Tried that once, but just got a floor full of soapy water.

The demon spawn machine tells me I have four art orders to print and process for shipping. Two more are at the printer and will be done Monday. Six orders to ship Tuesday. Ok, need to get those moving.

Ah, more coffee. Need that.

Alarms tell me I am behind about contacting Tonya and letting her know what Sue needs at Midwest Furfest next weekend. I need to prep a care package for her at the con. Hmmm, need to check the print books and be sure all the prints are ready to march out onto the table and sell themselves.

This coffee cup has a hole in one end. I think I saw a spirit with a straw slip in and get a drink. Frak, I need another mug of coffee. Now, if I were a Wizard I could just levitate the stuff to get another cup. Must go make more coffee. May as well make our yogurt and breakfast drink while I wait.

3/4 cup yogurt, flax, bilberry jam and call it breakfast. Stevia, Ginger, ginseng, don quay, yucca, cinnamon, nutmeg, saw palmetto, add water, stir and morning energy drink. Oh, and third mug of coffee.

Need to order dog pads for Mocha's bathroom. Horizontal badge holders and clips. Need to submit to those big eyes of hers and take her outside.

I think I will have to assign catching up the Guild applications to Mocha. Do them tomorrow if she doesn't get them done. I think we are nearing 20 now in the past two weeks.

I have 44 GM perk points to add to Sam. I think that will raise him in the Guild Clan. It will bring him over 100 CP. I will get 16 more by the end of Left Over Con, maybe 20. Need to get the new Screeches and thump cards done for Griffons. Sam needs them. With their affinity to the dead I think we should look at doing a "free" dead type card for Griffons. I am thinking of a couple of spell like abilities for the Big Pegasus to use. More powerful dispel.

Gotta drink this coffee and get to work. This thinking about work is inflaming the spirits. Such noisy pests. Besides, I am getting tired already.

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, November 11, 2010

If I write, will they read?

I am always wondering what kind of stuff to write on these blogs. What do people want to read?

I was surprised at Pentacon by the player reaction to the way that I ran the game when Battle Sight was active.

I always think of GMing as a cooperative effort between the GM and the players. When a group establishes a Link it changes some of my explanations as a GM because the players are passing information back and forth at the speed of thought. When they activated Battle Sight it changed their perception of the world and I reflected that by expanding my explanations to the group.

What I did was to respond to my version of Battle Sight by writing it up on the DS blog. Now I want to know if this is the type of information that people are looking for in a blog.

The first reaction I got to this question was "I would like it as one of your Podcasts, I don't read blogs much. I miss the podcasts."

I could do this type of piece as both a blog piece and a podcast. In fact My little brain cell already has a thought on how to do the Battle Sight as a podcast.

Now I am going to stop writing this and await your thoughts..

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Recovery time and a little work

Mocha is helping Sue and I rake leaves in the yard. The city will be by in just a few days to pick up leaves from the street. Mocha is very helpful, she supervises.

I am behind on getting Guild cards out, I will catch up soon. We are getting a number of groups starting/restarting DS playing. Maryland, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Washington, even The Netherlands. Things are looking good for DS. Now we need to get people involved in the Guild Clans. I hear Ann has some ideas, but we need more involvement to make them go.

I had a Clan spirit to be rescued in my games at Pentacon, but nobody looked to the spirit world to find her.

We were so tired I forgot all about giving out the GM bonus cards at the Con. I need to ask Tim to help keep track of that. Maybe he can remind me that we are doing it.

I have tried getting some work done, but after a couple of hours today I started shaking and went to take a nap. I think my body is trying to tell me something. I am going to listen and take another break.

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, November 8, 2010

Home and Happy

We are back home from PentaCon and falling down. I have a few things I have to get done today, but everything else will have to wait.

Had a really good time at PentaCon. I always enjoy seeing friends there.

I am doing an FAQ based on questions from the Con. I will get it posted around the time of our next newsletter in a few days. It will be broken into a guideline FAQ and a GM Hints and Tips FAQ.

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, November 4, 2010

In Fort Wayne

We are here for the PentaCon show.
Tonight we are going to lay back and enjoy some time together.
I am also trying out posting from the iPhone. We shall see how that works.
Good night and Good gaming!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Sue is back, a day off is called for

Sue had a good time at FurFright. We should have sent her with DS too, but with her being solo that is rough.

We are going to take the day off and relax. There is a lot to do, but living has come to the top. We just will not get as much done for Pentacon as we wanted.

Have a good one, we will!

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, November 1, 2010

Sue returns in an hour!

Not sure how I should get ready, but I sure have missed her. I better take Mocha out for a walk. I am not going to let Sue out of my sight for hours!

-- Post From My iPad

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sunday's Efforts, made good progress

I have completed the 27 rough cards for Valarians. They will show up as three sets. The first PDF is done. I just need two more PDF's completed to post them. Mostly it will be writing up the cards. The second and third will not have much discussion at the start.

I also got 18 Bloodkin cards ready for sets. The background piece needs finishing.

I completed the first Necro set. My thought is to do them in a series of sets expanding their spells as we move up through the stages of Necromancy. I will have to see how many their are when I get done.

Sue and I have been using SMS to stay in touch while she is at FurFright. She is due back either Monday or Tuesday. We then head out Thursday for Fort Wayne and Pentacon.

Now, I think I will lay walk Mocha and then see if I can get some sleep.

Good Night and Good Gaming!

-- Post From My iPad

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Valarians and more

I sat down yesterday to work on the Valarian sets. I wrote a piece on the Valarians, but I was not happy with the work. It just felt wrong. So I switched to working on the cards and that went much better.

Talking to Mark R he mentioned that I should read the Valarian book before writing anything. I did so. Damn, Sue wrote a good work there. The result is that I think everyone should read that book again. It really helped me finish up the cards, and even my written piece for the PDF. I am hoping to post the rough Monday.

There was also a good deal of talk about Bloodkin in there. So, I am now working on bringing the Bloodkin back into line with the original concepts. The Bloodkin were mortals and shifters, anyone with Dragon's Blood, even if they did not have strong enough blood to become a shifter. Orcs probably call it Orckin, but what can you do?

My thinking right now is to make a "Bloodkin" set with no forms to start with. It would be for both shifters and their Mortal Allies. A good place to move the Latent Shifter card as well.

We can then create the "Evolved Bloodkin" for the shifters, form affinity and fill out that set with forms.

The response to making racial Avatars has been good. It is really what we wanted to do in the first place, but we were limited by the Deluxe card format, so we crammed them into the Bloodkin. I am thinking we should call them all Greater so they can not access the coming Prime abilities for each race. It will make the Primes just a little more special.

I am also looking at giving each shifter race a mortal form. That would mean all Wererats could shift into Vermite. It would give Vermites a second face and let human wererats smell like a vermite.

Yea, I know. With the Great Change we are taking the opportunity to do some of the stuff with DS that we have wanted to do for a long time. Sometimes I wonder if we were wrong not to change the game every few years like everyone else. Look on the positive side, once this is done we can cruise for another 15 years.

Good Night and Good Gaming!

-- Post From My iPad

Friday, October 29, 2010

Embrace the Chaos. Not just a slogan, it is a way of life.

Here it is Frakkin 7:40 in the morning. Sue is safely in Connecticut for Fur Fright.

I even made two mugs of coffee this morning. One sip for me, one sip for Sue. Mocha is mopping, she misses Sue too! Mac suddenly wanted to cuddle with me last night, her Sue was missing and she yelled at me about it.

On the work front I finished a rough of a Channel set. I also laid out a complete library of one card for each of the different card types we will be using. Of course I am still going over them for the missing ones. Just realized I need a Reaver, Storm Hunter and Hag cards. I am breaking the Features out into Features, Warp Features, Necromancy, Jikadell, Hag and Pylos. Got card layouts for Astral and Ritual done too. Working on the Channel card caused me to start work on the Ritual stuff.

Trying to establish some consistent word usage. Spells are Cast. Abilities are Activated. Powers will be Invoked.

I am glad we went with recognizing Classic as a category. It means we can design new cards that work making some old cards outmoded. It does mean we will be relying on our GM's to use 3.4 to make older cards work within the scope of the game. That is fine by me. My opinion, and that of our players, is that we have the best GM's around.

Today I will be going back over the Channel Rough PDF and posting it later. Getting the work done on the card category Fundamentals. Work on the first Valarian set.

Drink coffee. One for Sue and one for me. Hey, downing three cups of coffee right off almost has me moving.

The mind is bouncing around. We will need to break Rituals into two parts. One is the field work and will be on cards. The second half will be creation. Since making Rituals involves permanently sacrificing experience it really is not an in game activity. We are working on the concept that a Ritualist Anchor can be learned, but that Glyphmasters and Zachtos Bloodline shifters can use them without the Anchor. That is the concept anyway. It may be changing. Rituals will be a Power. We have a pile of contradictory cards here on Rituals. We will have to work that out before we can release them. Sue and need several free days just to decide which way we like these best.

Now to get to work. Start with a Valarian write up, then Hadley's safe house work, need to send card art needs for new Channel cards to Sue. She may have some extra time at the Con, we will see. Those leaves are not raking themselves, and Mocha is ignoring them. Hmmm, breakfast. Yogurt. Maybe three more cups of coffee. Rewrite and expand my new module. Run it at PentaCon?

Progress is going in too many directions to be making good headway in any one direction. There is the "bootcamp" project for helping new GM's and players. Adventure creation. Actually, we create tons of adventures, we just do not write enough down to be able to actually publish them.

The Familiar Place comic is good experience and light hearted. A good way to practice for the DS one Sue is working on.

Working up a new podcast character and background for Mark's Mysteries podcast. Want to make it closer to DS. It reaches many non gaming people and we need to draw them in.

Thinking about doing the game podcast as a mission briefings for DS games. Use it to expand a sense of the world and give GM's some ideas to run with.

I need to stop this rambling and get to work.

-- Post From My iPad

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Game Preparation and more

I am running in a few hours and the players are going to be encountering several new terrain issues as their mission leads them into the blight line in the center of Kanchaka Valley.

It is going to take me additional time to create the adventure because I want to lay out the ideas in a way that can be edited into something that can be published.

In the past I have run everything off the top of my head with little more than a set of cryptic notes organizing the whole thing. I can run an evening in about six short sentences.

I do it that way because the time to do a complete work up has to be ripped from some other project.

Today I am going to do the adventure even though the Valarian and Channel sets are begging for the time. I can get one of them roughed out or do the adventure longhand.

I know that most GM's have exactly the same problem, so we need to assist by publishing adventures. To publish adventures we have to put off other projects. The old catch 22 is visiting us.

I also found the reason that I should not pre-number sets. Set 34 was supposed to be Familiars and Companions, but it is not ready. Anyway, I lost track of the missing set number.

Back to work with me.

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Design is a Balancing Act

Writing the new Version 1.1 Dragon Storm Update was interesting and it presented us with some problems.

First, we want to keep the rules as simple as we possibly can. That entails looking at each rule proposed and asking if it is fundamental or a complication. We always come down on the conservative side of this and cut anything that even looks like a complexity.

To make this work we rely on our GM's and players to fill in the blanks using their intelligence and understanding of the Spirit of DS. The spirit is to have fun and try to get everyone else to have fun. If we wanted to be serious we would be reading Aristotle instead of gaming.

Second we want each player and GM to have the freedom to manipulate the game in ways they find entertaining. From that was born the famous GM rule 3.4. This rule allows a GM to really extend the fantasy aspects of the world without having to follow a rigid set of rules or a script written by us for them. We really believe that our players and GM's will want to stretch their imaginations in ways we can not know about. We have a world where Dragons fly and Breath Fire, how much absolute realism can you expect?

We realize that this makes DS different form other RPG's. Few of them expect GM's and players to input their own ideas into the games. We have faith in our players, you can handle it.

Our next DS rules project is to take the old rules and the revisions and go through and combine them for the book. This is going ton take a good deal of careful consideration. We will be taking our time. After all, it took us 14.5 years to do our first update.

Good Night and Good Gaming!

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Preparing for Con on the Cob and more

It is once again time to get on the road and go to a Con. Today I will be packing and prepping for the Con at, I hope, a leisurely pace. Need to rest the old bones before the Con. That way I will not be more grouchy than usual.

We have been working like mad to get the new Dragon Storm and Guild updates done. It has been instructive to hear from the two opposing sides on the DS issue. We have scattered the drafts around among our regulars and among a group of people who have left DS.

What we have compromised over the years is the simplicity of rules. The simpler the rules the more you can do with them and the quicker it is to play. The individual GM can make their games as detailed as they want, yet the people who have a full schedule should be able to sit down and create an adventure in a few minutes. The growth of the rules has taken away the quick GM aspect of DS. Our ultimate goal in doing this is to bring the chaos of our warped world in a way that is simple and flexible.

The people who are finding these changes the most difficult to accept have added the rules in their heads slowly over time and they have not noticed how far from the original game concept we have drifted.

One of the changes we are making is outside of the rules and is an informational procedure. We want to do a full write up of each set of cards that we add to the game. The most complete example of this is the Familiars and Companions PDF that we posted. This is the link. this kind of writing is time consuming and we are going to have to slow down our card set releases to be able to provide the world in this way. I believe it will be worth it. We are going to have to wait and see.

Once we have a series of these works created we will be able to combine them and publish them as a series of Grandilar World Guides books.

I will be delving in to a number of DS thoughts over the next couple of weeks, right here, so keep tuning in.

And thanks to all of our loyalists for their support as we make this transition to the future.

-- Post From My iPad

Friday, October 8, 2010

Life is Good, but not perfect.

I spent Wednesday relaxing with Sue, Mocha and Mac. Good day, but taking a day off sure makes things pile up.

I have been using Twitter more often to send out links to new "stuff" as we do it, with links. If you have a Twitter account that I should be following, let me know about it.

More writing being done. I can get these pieces done to a certain point and then I need to wait for the final rules update before I can finish. What it means is that when we get the new games rolling there will be a lot of new background material built into the card set descriptions. We will not be able to publish all of these at one time, so we will put the PDF's up for people to see. One of the new things we are going to push is people making proxy cards for playing with. That was the purpose behind our publishing the Blank card set. If people need just a card or two, they can use Blank Proxy cards.

Thursday I went grocery shopping. I must have spent two hours on the iPhone looking up huge, strange chemical names from the labels. When it made me go "ewwww" I put the stuff down. An oddity showed up that I still can't track down the why of. Hotdogs. Hotdogs have calories of 70 to 180 varying with the brand. The 70 calorie ones have a short list like beef, garlic etc. The more strange names in the list the higher the calories and the higher the salt and sugar. On prices it looks like you choose between chemdogs and beefdogs. Have you ever looked up the possible side effects of some of the chemicals they add to food. Don't, it may cause fear and terror in the eater.

Ok, Mocha says she has needs and then I need to get to work on something. I guess the first job is to decide what to work on. Even the dog knows I should get to work.

Good Night and Good Gaming!

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Just another day at the clanhold

I am sitting down and taking a look inside my mind, which is a very scary place.

Sue and I had a good talk this morning. I am not sure how she does it, but she cleared up several difficulties I was looking at without ever directly talking about them.

Afterwards I spent some time working on the Way Of Series of cards. With the new layout provided in the Set write ups I can talk about the implications of cards in a way that was not possible before. The Way Of Series of cards are taking about half a page each to write.

I am hoping that the players and GM's take the time to read these before they just take a card for the stats without considering the possibilities. The idea is for players to choose careers to enhance the characters personality.

We have bumped the number of Way Of cards to nine to fill out the Set. Way Of Herbalist and Way of Woodsman are being added.

Each will have something they can do between adventures and they have a skill bonus as well. There is a section discussing the possible ways a GM can use these for happenings in games and ways players can use them. I think after people take a good read of some of these things they will have more adventure ideas and more creative uses of what were mundane cards.

The stats are all staying the same so people who have the cards and just get the PDF will be able to use the cards just as they are. We still want people to keep using there old cards. Yes, we want them to buy more as well, but we do not want to force them to.

Well, time for a nap.

Sue liked my write up of her game, but she is still writing the adventure, so I have not seen it.

Good Night and Good Gaming.

-- Post From My iPad

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Trip to the Farm, DS gaming

You see, I'm not really a bad kid. Things just seem to happen when I am around, my ma always said I was like that. Anyway, after I killed a bully in town, things went a little south. Apparently he had a powerful family, while my family are refugees. That equals, well, I lost at a trial I did not go to, and I am a convicted murderer. I am also a Rogue, Valarian, Nightwitch, elven Griffon shape shifter.

So, there we were training near the safe house and up the road comes the 19 members of my family. They were also forced out of town. What could I do? After long negotiations with our dead Mentors and their contacts, we found a place to move my family to. I think the Wakana in the new homestead had something to do with the land being available, but what can you do.

After buying supplies we mounted an expedition to move my family. Ma and my Uncle led the family and I did what I could to heal them. I was proud of my companions as they to pitched in to get the family in shape for the trip. I was accompanied by Foxy Luv, a Tigrean, Jinxus, an Ebony Elf and Fenrick, a human Elementalist.

Things started out pretty rough. My family was in terror/awe of Jinxus and Foxy because they were shifters and the first time Fenrick used magic they almost bolted because they thought he was a necromancer. It took an awful lot of work to get things moving smoothly. Jinxus and Foxy did not help much, both of them found my unwashed relatives to be smelly. To me it smelled like home and brought back a lot of memories I would like to forget. Well, what are you going to do, they are family.

As we traveled Foxy managed to provide a nice supply of meat for the stew pot, that was down right kindly of her. Fenrick managed to clean up a couple of diseased people, my sister Barry and brother Gyminias among them. So things were moving nicely when we started getting nightly harassment from the Wakana. They just did not act right though, and one of them was riding a giant Wolf that looked to be a drakkel wolf crossbreed. I had never seen anything like it, but Jinxus took it out with some kind of magic eye thing dragons can do. I like having a dragon around, especially one that can put up a Channel Link.

When we finally arrived at the new farmstead it just did not feel right. Foxy and I searched the area and found Wakana tracks here, fresh ones. Our guess was that they had already scouted the place for a major attack on us. We set up the camp in the middle of the clearing and then hid the family along the edge that first night. Jinxus and I guarded the fake camp and Foxy and Fenrick took the families sides.

Sure enough, they came at us in the fake camp. They stepped out to use there slings and I shifted to draw the fire, and I'll be damned if Jinxus didn't shift in to dragon right next to me. The Wakana, of course, fired everything they had at the dragon, but in the process I caught sight of the one giving orders. I broke away to get him, thinking that if I could take out the pack leader they would run. That SOB teleported! All I got to kill was some nameless monster he had left behind. Jinxus followed me in and killed another.

The next round Fenrick and Foxy started working at the edges, but the Wakana Pack Leader was still running things and the Wakana closed and started melee with Jinxus. They sure were pounding the crap out of him! I fired off my healing into him as they pounded him. When the link went down I knew we had a serious problem. Then the Pack Leader Teleported back in and headed for Jinxus. I threw myself in the way and blocked him. He hit me, I hit him, Foxy landed as a winged cat on Jinxus and started licking him. Fenrick took out another one and then I caught sight of my shriveled old uncle coming out of the woods. Around him were half a dozen of my family with slings. They moved forward in a decent formation. It brought a tear to my eye seeing uncle back in action. A couple of the unengaged Wakana were even more unhappy than can be expressed easily and they died from sling stones slamming in to them.

I got a good break and I pushed back the Wakana who were after Jinxus. I had a wonderful streaking Screech took out one and I got a healthy strike in to the Pack Leader as they tried to back out of the battle. Jinxus launched himself in to the air and I was glad to know he would live to fight another day. With the family and Fenrick backing me I went after the pack, and I began to wonder if I would see another day, but when you have them on the run you have to push, right?

Fenrick, the family and I took out another Wakana each and the Pack Leader decided he could get more boys, so he split.

Afterwards there was much wine and song. It was my family, so uncle and I discouraged any additional celebrations.

There you have it, we survived one more time in Sue's game, even if it was a rather close call for two of us.

I am thinking about adding another Screech and maybe a universal blood surge, but a Good Moves or Set Traps could come in handy. I also have to look at the Full Skyrider Blood Surge, although I do not recall the CP of it and I have only seven to get. What about Purify? Almost too many choices.

I see Sue over at her machine typing, I believe she is revising her written adventure she had. I would like to see what she did for this one.

Good Night and Good Gaming!

-- Post From My iPad

More Games at the Secret Clanhold

Sue has been preparing all day for tonights game. Both she and I are doing a lot of writing in preparing for games. We plan on turning it into published materials.

Anyway, I am getting a little nervous about all of the Warp Storm hoppers that are appearing in the neighborhood of the safe house. Sam is at 47 CP and I just added Storm Wars to the crazy kid. Hey, he is just a kid and he does not like those hoppers, so he is getting ready to show his irritation. He is already a wanted criminal and very conflicted about it. He has both the Rogue basic card and the Valarian basic card. I am not sure which way he will go.

Ok, time to get ready, maybe some meditation to start with.

Good Night and Good Gaming!

-- Post From My iPad

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Writing and other work

I am getting a lot of words down on paper and a few other projects are rolling along nicely.

I have Jikadell, Valarian, Dragon, version 1.1 Guidelines, Guild Guide and Hadleys Safe House all in Sue's inbox for editing.

I have the real rough Necromancy and Elethay pieces done, but they need a few hours each before I can send them on.

Today we have family obligations that will tie up a few hours, so my work time is going to be truncated. I also have a series of print jobs that have to be done today for the Art by end of the business, I think I can get those done in four or five hours.

I also need to calm the old brain and have some words with my ancestors about everything.

I finished up the prep for the upcoming Familiar Place web comic, so that is falling in to place.

I got the GM cards from Dragon Storm and Kanchaka into big PDF files and I will be linking them on Monday as an update to our DS content page. They work nice in the iPad, but they are ungainly in the computers. I guess we need some of the Vaporware from other companies to become reality before we can find out.

Now, the laundry is calling me. I think I shall succumb to it's siren call and start a load.

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, September 23, 2010

My mind, it does wander

There is an awful lot that I need to do in life, everything from doing dishes (I just finished) to grocery shopping to writing up the Valarian background sheet.

I had a piece here on the difference between real world economics and fantasy economics, but would anyone be swayed by reality? Or would everyone just keep blinding believing in the fantasies "they" continually spout? Common Sense and logic should tell everyone we have a problem and that the economic model is broken. It is the biggest news in the world. Everywhere people are meeting and talking about what we need to do, what we need to change, to make this the world we want to live in. Every day the news is covering the issue. The world is changing, the situation is new, it is different. The economic system that saw the rise and fall of the Sumerians, Greeks, Romans and everything since is no longer working. We need to stop and think. Time for a new model, this one is 3,000 plus years old and things have changed.

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, September 20, 2010

Too busy, and happy about it!

We are trying to do a number of projects all at the same time and I am feeling good about it.

For everyone who is wondering where their Guild cards are, I just finished putting them all in envelopes last night and they go to the post office in the morning.

We have created a format for doing set guidelines. The first set that has the full treatment is the new Shaman Set 31. These are going to have background materials and cards. The format is such that you can import it to portables or iPad like devices and look through them. We put a big cover on them so when they are on the "shelves" of ipads or kindles you can read the title. Each of these is taking a surprising amount of time for writing, revising, editing and final edits, but it will be worth it. This will slow down releases, but they will be more "complete".

While cards are unavailable we expect people to use the blank cards from Set 8 to make Proxies. If you need a card or more, make them and keep playing.

I am currently working on the Set 11 Witchcraft write up and it is nearly done. Our Spirit Advisor slowed me by deciding that she would like to see Beguiling Images replaced in the set with a new card. It is called Earth Deflection, and it is a good card, real good. I am thinking I should renumber the set as "32" because it will be version 1.1 safe and have a new card. We shall see.

Familiar Place is proving to be a success as a Web Comic and we have more such comics we would like to do. Each new comic will take several months to prep and get rolling. We will be adding that prep work to the schedule. No, I am not going to tell what it is, but it will be DS related.

Everyone knows that we have changed the format for the Guild and Sue and I are working on it. In fact I just finished putting all the Guild Cards in envelopes last night and they go out in the mail tomorrow.
The High Councilors have been helping a lot. Ann has been putting up with my Madness especially well and she has been a Fantastic. She is doing a lot of work and needs to hear it. Thanks Ann!
The Guild Official changes are nearing completion and they will be easier for people to deal with. You can get a hint by downloading the new Character sheet on the DS content page.

The new Version 1.1 Guidelines are also nearing completion. The Spirit Advisor and Hyarch will go head to head Tuesday for a "discussion". It should probably be a pay-to-view show. We will be putting these out as an errata sheet. I want to redo the entire rules and publish them as a book, but that is going to take time. Maybe for spring.
Tim has provided a spreadsheet with space to put all of the card errata right in a card list. That project will begin after the version rules are finalized.
I am going to once again say that we are not leaving the old cards behind. We will find a way to support them. It will cause some in game inconvenience, but it will preserve peoples investments. It is a trade off that we are making rather than acting like every other company.

That is enough for one day.

Good Night and Good Gaming!

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Work is slowing my blogging

It seems that I find my time to blog when my mind has hit a roadblock and I need to get the gears moving.

I have finished up the Shaman Set 31 Guidelines. I need to leave it for a couple of days and then review it for a final time.

I am sitting here working on the Guidelines for the witchcraft set and I am trying to find the words to express what we mean. It is a lot more difficult than it looks.

Well, back to work.

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, August 30, 2010

Closing out another Monday

Everything went well today, but as usual everything took longer to get done. Well, what can you do?

The discussion of how to handle the Clan points continues. We have gotten a few people to sing out what they think, and so far we have six factions. I am hoping to start hearing something from the players who have not been participating in the Clan system. It would be nice to know what we need to do to get more people involved in the Guild Clans.

If you are not doing the Guild Clan Characters, why not? And what do we need to do to get you into the Guild Characters?

Ok, I am going to go watch an episode of Daria and relax.

-- Post From My iPad

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Just finished a wonderful DS game with Sue as GM

She scared the living daylights out of us with the little (foot long) blind rats. They could only do real damage when they Streaked, but there were a lot of them. i think the ton of sticky ugly momma was the last straw. Jinxus saw a HP. He was just a little nervous... Slick Sam did OK. Good follower. We seemed to be streaking and stunning all night. We had a great time.

I finally went ahead and hooked the Bluetooth keyboard to my ipad. I wanted to see how it worked. This is far too scary. It works way too good. Now I am going to need a second keyboard.

I have started compiling the real Alpha version 1.1 DS rules. Poured the original rules into pages, expanded the type size to readable and discovered 30 pages. Went through the first five pages pretty quick. A few additions, but the original still works so this is mostly a touch up and addition job. I can use the original as the guide.

More tomorrow.
Good Night and Good Gaming.

-- Post From My iPad

Still resting, but we have started forward

Mocha has had another hair cut and she is feeling good about everything so I have set her on a couple of new projects.

Sue got me the art for the two new Shaman cards so I have put the set together and got it almost ready to send off. I have also gone through and made these cards completely version 1.1 ready. It will start people thinking that the new version is not too different really. More data on the card type line and simpler rules to make the card text larger. No major changes. The sheet is in final edit and will go to the printer in a couple of days.

Sue will be running this evening and I have a new character to run. I have used my Guild bonuses to get him to 29 card points. I am trying a Griffon, Skyrider, Night Witch, Valarian Champion, Rogue. That is a mouthful. I have also set the character up with the version 1.1 Griffon cards.

We have a new background for the Griffon cards and they are much more readable.

One problem in the old system is that with the addition of more weapons the one point forms have become obsolete. Rather than change the weapons and do all sorts of hinky fixes we will upgrade the forms to give the shifters more punch. Easy and fun. So, my Griffon gets tougher forms to test. Yay!

Right now Sue says I need to make some small changes to the new Griffon cards and I can use them tonight.

Good Morning and Good Gaming!

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, August 23, 2010

Sometimes we get stuck on the "Way it Was"

Doing something new, something different is scary. We always fear change, even when it is better or more fun.

Our inner Lizard brain always desires a repeat of exactly what worked yesterday. The lizard does not see that it is a new day and that there may be a new way.

We struggle everyday with the lizard. It makes us afraid, it makes us stop. If the lizard had it's way we would all still be in a cave hoping the lightning starts a fire for us.

With DS we, and you, are facing the lizard. Can we grasp that change is not bad? Can we open our minds and enjoy the ride? Or will we sit in the past waiting for someone else to "make it better"?

We are facing those questions now. Are we ready for tomorrow?

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Rest, study and the sounds of an Audiobook

We are trying to recover our wits around here. Mocha is helping all she can, right now she is looking for a good place to leave a pee message while I type this.

The more I look at our cards and rules the more I realize how complicated all of these changes are. Shortening the text on the cards to make them readable means doing write ups on a lot of cards. I am adding (RST) to the card lines to indicate that the card has Restrictions written up. This is going to be slow. Why are so many of the logical card sets turning out to be seven or eight cards? *sigh*

Doing the newsletter is turning out to be slow. First I have to have the new comic site we are announcing working. Finally working right, had DNS propagation problems. Then I need all of the new Guild people in the computer to send newsletters to. Almost done, just half a dozen to go. The I need to write the newsletter itself. I have a nice piece on the Red Crest done.

Ok, coffee ready. Must wake Sue and prepare the kitchen for a new floor.

-- Post From My iPad

Friday, August 13, 2010

Gencon, Ds, Go Time, Swimming in thoughts

We had a real good GenCon. The flip side is after all these cons since May both Sue and I are fried. I had a good chance to talk to players at GenCon and I picked the brains of disgruntled D20 gamers, and there are a lot of them. Essentially the industry is going a different direction than many of the players want to go. The Freedom we offer in DS is in big demand.

As for DS itself the system is really powerful, but we have let a lot happen to it while we were busy dealing with other work. We had a lot of "things" to think about and we started working on doing a clean slate new set of games to deal with it. The truth is we both want to play with the Dragons on Grandilar, but we want a lot of the new rules we are using for Crypt Crawl, Tark, Blood Gems and a couple of other designs.

So, what do we do? Right now we are stepping back and taking a good long look at the baby we love. We can make it better, we can make it stronger, we can grab a lot of new players with a revision. We are going to do it. We know some of the changes will unsettle people, but after a time we think most people will like it better. More variety, more craziness, yet a better defined format for doing it in.

We are going to need a lot of help and patience from our current players to do this. I think we will get it.

For now we are going to enjoy the heat, a few games and have a good freaking time. Sue and I will be playing later, at least that is my plan, but maybe I should not mention that.

Drinking a cold latte at the Good Beans Cafe, sitting with Sue, writing a blog. I love this life! See you later!

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Thoughts are clogging my brain.

Getting my mind the changes we have wrought with the game is making me look deeply at the way we have been doing the game.

This whole trying to force the existing cards into sets of nine cards is making me look at the cards in a different light. It looks like a straight forward shove them in nines and print them, but it is not that simple.

I was just doing the nine shaman cards for a gallery of the set and I realized that the Spirit Dancer and the Tattoo Artist cards are good cards, but not good in this set. We really need two new cards in there instead. *sigh* maybe a healing spell between Healing Hands and Healing Touch. Healing Contact? 5 pts would get a 2d6+12 card. A good step between the 2 point for beginning and the 8 point for big healing. Give some room to grow the character.

Since currently a shaman can only speak with willing spirits we could use an "Open a Dialogue" card. Choosing the word Dialogue should convey the idea of a two way talk that may well involve disagreements. Do I spend too much time wondering about specific words to use? It seems like people blend together a lot of words that seem to have different meanings to me.

The second problem here is that I really need to be bending my efforts into getting together everything for the Artshow at Gencon in a week. Sue is trying, with huge effort, to get all of her commission work caught up and done. That means I do not have art to put into the new cards.

Well, I guess I will just have to start talking here about some of the issues we are facing in growing DS. Many of those issues have developed because we did not have time before to cover everything, maybe we have become a little more organized around here and we can start to make some progress on some of these things.

Time sent me an updated card list, I really appreciate that. Now I may be able to get some of the numbers right on these cards.

New Cards:
Healing Contact SHA-030. 5cp 2d6+12.
Open A Dialogue SHA-031. 1cp

Now I need to go make a new sheet and a gallery for them. Maybe start a special set for the Magic Anchors.

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Up and At Them

I can hear the mutterings of the Necromancers in the back of my mind. It is way too early in the morning for me to be up.

OK then, time for coffee and packing for StormCon.

I am trying to explain to Mocha that she will have a sitter for the weekend. She always gets upset when we pack the car.

-- Post From My iPad

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Morning Fog in the Mind

It has been a long and fruitful week. My mind has now reached overload. I feel like there is a fog inside my mind. Thoughts are sluggish and hard to grasp this morning.

I ran a game Saturday with a different group than usual. I am always surprised by how nervous I get when I run for people outside my normal group. They were bemused by all of the "different" monsters, magics and methods. At the same time they were able to Embrace the Chaos and have a good time. The smiling GM card was a hit.

A good start has been made to reforming the Guild. I will be working with Ann and the other High Councilors to bring greater spice to the Clan system. The first enhancement will be the addition of Rescuing Clan Spirits. These will be appearing in convention games to be rescued.

Time is the one resource that Sue and I have in limited amounts. We need to start our time requirements with our ability to cuddle, talk and enjoy each others company. The next most important time task is to be able to enjoy time with our friends and companions. Then there are the routine tasks of accounting, reports, inventorying, production, shipping, web maintenance, communication, layout work, game guideline construction, guild maintenance, newsletters, convention logistics, submissions oversight, game "Spirit" maintenance, housework, yard work, and more that must be allocated time. With the remaining time we need to do the creative fun tasks. Those would be comics, commentaries, fantasy histories, artwork, walking the dog, considering history, listening to music and books, and a lot more.

As with all things in life we need to Embrace the Chaos that is our lives. So, off to the emails with me...

-- Post From My iPad

Friday, July 9, 2010

Busy week comes to a close

This has been a hectic week at the Secret Clanhold. I think for starting the Guild Reformation just nine days ago we have made a good job of it.

I am really pleased with the responses so far. All of the High Councilors have done a wonderful job. Ann has been particularly impressive as she is taking the pressure of getting all of the Clan Roster updated. Everyone should wonder over to the new site and get a new number so they can get their clan characters into the roster.

I am excited about what is happening. Keep those applications coming!
The handy link is right here.

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Well, the Guild Reformation is Officially here.

It has been a hectic week getting sets into production for StormCon and building the new site.

The most time consuming part has been putting in place the system to make sure the Behind the Guild system is in place. I am trying to get as mush of the structure into place as possible.

The only real change going on is the new Clan Rescued Spirits addition to the Clans.

I really need to public ally thank the new High Councilors for putting up with the last minute workload I dumped on them. Thank You Ann, Russ, Tim, Mark R, and Lee for the help.

I am looking forward to the reformed guild and seeing everyone at StormCon.

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Blogs, following them and why.

Every morning I go through a short list of blogs of people I know. I like seeing what they are up to. I really hate to admit it, but I do like some people. Some of the blogs don't update often (I am looking at you Tim) and I wonder what they are up to. Others make me hungry for Pot Roast, and I wish I was nearby to help eat the food... I feel like it keeps me in touch with people who I seldom see.

I need to say something here on the fact that I seldom comment on peoples blogs. I have always liked "watching" the world go by. So now I can not only watch the world go by, but I can watch the world of people I know go by.

So if you have a blog out there that I might enjoy following, please let me know about it.

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, July 5, 2010

Dealing with Michigan heat

The heat here is made of "heavy" air. Weighs you down when you are in it for a while. We have moved our operation deeper into the caverns under the clanhold. One bare lightbulb hangs from the rough hewn ceiling. It lights a portion of the area and creates vaguely dangerous shadows when it hits the rock outcroppings from the partially dug cavern.

Really rather a wonderful place. Dark, dank, cool and dangerous. Generally an uplifting type of place.

I have admitted that we are working on the guild on our RPG site. I am expecting those who notice to get concerned, worried, scared and rather wound up. It is all really as simple as it seems. We are working with Russ to spread the workload out among several people. Russ is going to be one of those people. He is one of the new High Councilors. There will be no major changes in the Guild itself. We will just have a volunteer staff instead of a volunteer Russ. Nice sound to that.

Guild Membership Free, new numbers, fill out a form so we can get the membership updated, Monthly email newsletter, wardens are still wardens, guild characters are still guild characters. No trauma involved.

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, June 28, 2010

Home Again, what a wonderful day for a drive.

The weather between Pittsburg and Flint was beautiful. It fits my mood right now. We had two good shows at once, Origins and Anthrocon.

Everything went smooth for Sue at Anthrocon, there we a number of DS games run and she got a lot of commissions. On top of that, she had a good time!

At Origins I really enjoyed seeing and talking to people. I had a good time. There were some rough spots at the con, but not any real problems. The result is I feel darned good and I am looking forward to StormCon.

After talking to people I have blog material for the next couple of days. I just need to do that old fashioned thinking first, then I write.

That is it for today! I go fall down now.

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, June 14, 2010

What does Monday mean?

Monday around here is the second day of the work week. On Sunday we try to gather the minds and force them into some semblance of organization. It is not really a heavy work day, more of a half day of preparation.

Monday is one of the long workdays. We have no games scheduled so we are able to get a lot of small tasks done. Today I fluttered across the city stopping at the credit union, hardware store, office supplies, post office and print shop. None of these stops were stressful, however, they used up several hours of time. No real chance to get into a big creative job, so the evening is for Etsy updates and blogging.

I managed to sneak an hour of writing in today. That is a whole three days in a row that I have managed to get an hour a day creative work done. That makes it a good day.

I am finally in a good mood. Maybe is was giving Sue some birthday gifts that helped my mood :)

-- Post From My iPad

Friday, June 11, 2010

Just another Birthday

It is Sue's Birthday!

We are sitting here at the Good Beans Cafe in Flint.
Website with Map!
Good coffee, free wifi, what more can you ask for?

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Some days are like a Storm

I have no idea why, but some days I awaken depressed and angry. Today is one of those days. I have absolutely no reason for my foul mood, it just is. When I get these swings in emotions the only thing I can do is to put my head down and work. I will try to avoid myself and work through the spell.

That sounds a weird, but there it is. If I can get my mind traveling along a busy course, I will get better. I am sure they have some lovely drugs for this, but I do not like using drugs to do what I should be able to do myself, so I don't.

I have also taken the precaution of letting Sue know what my mood is so she can avoid me too. I tell her because I do not want her trying to guess what is going on and wondering if it is something she did. It is all me, but I may well snap when I am in this mood. Communication has some value.

Off to work.

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Ran a game last night...

Sue and I are trying to take a deep breath here, and part of that is to do some gaming. At Marcon and again last night the invisible Memories of Zombies made an appearance. It is rather amazing the number of different forms the walking dead come in. Take for instance the Death Stalker with a Glamour on it they met and that one of the Gargoyles almost embraced unto his death. Good thing the Phoenix got there in time.

I am afraid that my games are getting stranger. They did find a magical recliner that assists healing. Ok, back to meditations and making card sets to print.

-- Post From My iPad

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Home from MarCon

We are back from MarCon safe and sound. Mocha is resting here by my chair and seems to be satisfied. Mac has been in for cream, but she is busy being mad at us. We Will need to apologize.

Marcon was a good convention, even though it was our third in a row. This is one of the cons that has a dealers room that sets my lungs to acting up, but it did not seem as bad as in years past. The gaming area jaws better than the dealers room, so I ran a game Saturday night. I enjoyed myself and hopefully others did as well. It was a little unusual as the CP speed for the game was 16 to mid 500's, and for the way the zombies were behaving. I will be continuing to run this sequence of adventures at Origins and then Storm Con.

I will try to find the time to write up Rodney's tavern, including the surly Dwarf Rodney. He does have a lot of good drinks for a run down tavern. He also has some serious defensive runes on the place. Thayles will need some explanation as well, and maybe somebody will find the elusive Alexander at some point, or maybe just his body up and shambling about.

For now, bath and sleep. Holiday tomorrow, I will be observing it and giving thanks to our veterans.

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Marcon preparations go forward

OK, it is late Thursday night and I am busy making prints and packing. It looks like it is going to be a long night, but that is just the way it is at the Secret Clanhold.

I am looking forward to Marcon. We will be seeing a good number of friends, some new folks and have some good conversations. I get such good ideas from talking to people.

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

We are trying to increase our programs and output.

Despite being in the middle of a three week convention run we are trying to move forward at the same time.

I suppose it was bound to happen again, but hopefully we are both better prepared mentally to add a couple of projects to the schedule.

I have started doing a series of Card Talks on the DS game blog. Hopefully this will start to get people thinking about the different possibilities provided in the cards and the game.

I am moving along on getting a series of picture galleries up on line so people can study the cards at their leisure and make choices. I have also made these downloadable so people can experiment with the cards in their games.

We are also starting a GM rewards program that is small at this point. We don't want to promise more than we can deliver. We will evaluate the response to the first steps and move forward from their.

Sue has returned from walking the dog and cat through the neighborhood. It is time for me to get my printing assignment and get back to work.

-- Post From My iPad

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Gamemasters needed at Marcon

As usual we are running behind, but if we were ever caught up, people would want to know what we did with Mark and Sue.

We have two tables scheduled for 7:30pm Friday night.
There are two tables scheduled at 9am, 2pm, and 7:30pm Saturday.
We also have two tables at 9am Sunday morning.

Gamemasters will get a Marcon DS Badge, something we are just starting. Each con we are at will have it's own badge. GM's will also get a $5.00 Gift card for each game they run.

On Saturday night I will be running a DS open CP game at 7:30pm. There will be six seats and those who GM at Marcon get seats first. Whoever runs games while I do will be getting extra Gifts for running those games.

Yes, we are slowly working on a plan to reward GM's for the kindness shown to us for running games at conventions Sue and I are at. I am not sure what we are capable of offering, but this should give us a good start.

-- Post From My iPad

Things are starting slowly

After two shows in a row I am having a lot of trouble finding the energy to get anything done.

Doing conventions stimulates the imagination about all of the things we could be doing. Sorting out the concepts and prioritizing them has my brain in slow motion. Even after completing the first task we have to ask ourselves if we have the time to do all, or any, of these great ideas.

Plus, the house is becoming a real mess, but we did get Mocha out for a shave. I think I lost half a dog. She is, however, much more comfortable in the heat.

Well, I need to get to doing something about all these on line art orders and preparations for Marcon.

Oddly enough I am looking forward to Marcon.

-- Post From My iPad

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Overheard at AnCon

"I have got to remember to bribe the GM BEFORE the game."

-- Post From My iPad

Friday, May 21, 2010

Up, Groggy and Moving towards AnCon

I have arisen from my great slumber with a slowness that I shall consider as soon as I get more coffee inside me.

Most of the con merchandise is in the van and ready to go. I have a lot of gear to pack this morning. I am taking the printer and accessories to be able to make prints in the hotel room at the show.

I am looking forward to being at AnCon.

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I have finished the WereCat prep

I got the Werecat set 23 done here, made a sheet to insert for the deck sheet to put in the market, and I got the last piece of art from Sue to start putting together the Tigrean set. I am thinking a character set next to finish getting the Tigreans and Griffon's rolling. Set 24 Tigrean, Set 25 Characters One, Set 26 Griffon. That is, at least the plan.

I am trying to do this in steps, set up the press sheet, do screen shots of the cards for the Gallery, post the Gallery, Create the Card list sheet, Ship the order to the printer, then finally put it up as a pre order in the market.

Even though we are in the middle of a series of conventions I feel very relaxed. I feel like I am getting work done at a good pace.

OK, looks like it is time to head back home and dump this work from the iPad to the computer to do the web work.

Hey, this is fun!

Life, better than all the alternatives, so you may as well enjoy it.

-- Post From My iPad

Working with Sue at Good Beans Cafe

Right now Sue and I are enjoying a good work session, cupcake, and cappachino. Good Beans Cafe is between downtown Flint and Hurley hospital on Grand Traverse. I can't say it is for everyone, but if you need a place to work away from the studio it is good. Free WIFI available.

WOW, I sound like an ad.

We got through the ComiCon in pretty good shape. We only slipped up and ate fast food Saturday night, and it was not as good as I remember. Either fast food has gotten worse or I have become used to good food.
OK, back to work.

-- Post From My iPad

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Tuesday, a good day to do some experimenting.

In a little while I need to pack the pre-orders for sets 18 and 19, but for the moment I am doing web research. Today I will see if I can share a photo from a third persons Flickr using this software.

This is a picture of Susan at Anthrocon 2008. Pretty lady!


-- Post From My iPad

Friday, May 14, 2010

Doing ComicCon

Final morning prep for ComiCon. I am actually looking forward to the next three weeks, it should be interesting.

We will be there from Noon to 7pm, those are the dealer hours. We live about an hour's drive away so we will be commuting for this one.

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Convention Prep and Have you heard?

Preparing for conventions. I am behind, as usual. So here is a story for you.

Did you hear about the Valarian who charmed the 22 patrons down at Rodney's Tavern? It was several hours before we could get him out, and several days before he could walk normally.

OK, not my normal fare, what can I say.

-- Post From My iPad

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Just a note.

Yes, I am here. Right now I am prepping for a game. Spider - Spawn are on the menu. Zombies eating a merchant, and the new Core game cosmetics as treasure. So, on with it.

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Experimenting with life

Susan and I are trying a number of new methods of working and living. Since we first published Dragon Storm in 1996 many aspects of our lives, technology and in the world have changed significantly. Even more has changed since my own earliest memories, dating back into the 1950's. People of my age seem to come in three broad ranges of thinking.

First are those who have let their Lizard Brain scare them. They have hunkered down and want to keep all of the "stuff and power" just as it is. A second segment are determined to return to a wonderful past that they remember. These people are controlled by the fear emanating from their Lizard Brains. They do not seem to remember the bad things that existed "back then". The third group, hopefully the one I am in, is amazed at how much the world has changed. I have seen many problems overcome,new technologies, and new opportunities. Certainly the world has problems, new problems created while solving the old ones. I was tired of the old problems anyway, so dealing with the new problems look both possible and exciting to me.

For us the most I important feature of today's world are the new opportunities. To be able to take the ti e to actually enjoy these opportunities we are experimenting with new life styles. We are breaking our schedule into "full steam ahead" periods of about six weeks and "slow down and think" periods of two weeks. The idea is to take time to consider the effects of what we have done and plan what we need to do in the next work period. With the world itself changing around us at speeds I never dreamed possible we want to work with those changes and enjoy seeing them happen.

Monday we began a two week "creative and thoughtful" period. We are looking at our maintenance work, like accounting and record keeping. It needs work. Our creative process needs consideration as well. We have tried several methods over the past few years and none have satisfied us. We will keep looking for a way that we can enjoy.

I seem to have arrived at a mental block, so I will take some time to talk to Mocha, as Sue is away at the moment.

In the meantime, have a good game, or enjoy a good memory from games past.

-- Post From My iPad

Friday, April 23, 2010

Friday night and time to experiment for a moment

Sue has begun using the iPad for some art. This will be Tigrean Hunting card image.

-- Post From My iPad

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Time for a few thoughts, scary idea there

At home con I found out about Dave's cancer. I had a talk with him and he described the problem. While I am saddened by the news I am also glad that I met and came to know Dave. He is a good man, and there are too few good people in the world.

I find that at small events like HomeCon I can actually talk to people in ways that the larger Cons don't make easy. While Sue was running her game I had the opportunity to sit and talk to good old fashioned role-players. I always find the input to be both entertaining and useful. It helps me understand the different aspects of role-players.

Dragon Storm is a small community of gamers who support the efforts of Sue and myself. There are several different flavors of gamers out there in the community. I can't even peg it down to just two. it is more complex that that. I really need to understand the varying needs of the people who support us so we can plot a course that will bring everyone as much fun as possible.

We are also doing a lot of thinking now that we have these ipads in our hands. I have been using portables for most of my work for a long time now and have been satisfied. Sometimes I wish that I was working on a desktop so that I can have the power and screen real estate that it provides, but I find the flexibility of the portable to valuable to give up. Now I have the iPad in my hand and I find that there is a third class of tools available. It brings a new perspective to the table. The functions are broken down into small pieces that bring into focus each task. It allows the App designer to answer a single question, and to answer it well. You do not look for a program that gives you a wide range of options, you look for an App that does a specific task.

Last night I got an App the is called MyPDF's. It allows me to import the PDF's from the computer and use them on the iPad. When I turn the iPad to it's "up" position it shows a page of cards or text in an extremely readable format. The nine card sheets that we have been doing show up wonderful. It makes me wonder about all of the possibilities in this machine for the GM. I am going to sit myself down and begin trying ways of formatting a PDF page that would allow me to create an encounter that would be right there to run from. With the extended battery life of this machine and the ability to turn it sideways for ease of use it may well be a new tool that I will be using a lot of as a GM and designer. It can never replace a computer by itself, by it certainly adds an aspect to computer use that will allow a lot of increased productivity. It will be even better this fall once the multi-tasking is added.

Well, that is enough for now. Many thoughts, ideas and concepts are running through the old brain bucket and I actually want to try several of them out. A refreshing concept, a tool that makes me want to work.

a quick linking test

-- Post From My iPad

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Great time at HomeCon, now on to Flint ComicCon

I am glad we got down to HomeCon. I'll post more later. I have to get Sue down to the Flint ComicCon for today's show.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Behind Already?

Ok then. Time has once again perpetrated a successful sneak attack on us. We are late leaving for HomeCon.

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Another interesting day is ending

I got a lot of work done today despite it being one of those days where interruptions are the primary event.

I have continued to wonder what exactly I want to do when I grow up. The last half century, plus a bit, has been interesting, and fun, but where am I going next? What I do know is that I am happy to be here during these times. There are problems, troubles and stupid leaders, but that was true when I grew up too. Today's problems are a combination of new troubles and problems that the generations proceeding me shunted forward rather than solving. We are solving a few things and shunting the rest forward. We have been doing that for 8,000 years now, maybe longer, so it is nothing new.

I do know that the ads that keep popping up on our LJ/DS blog are bothering me. My plan is to eliminate one more blog by starting to put all of our game and SVC announcements on a single blog.

The above link will be to the new page. Now, I need to get a few things done in prep for both HomeCon on Friday and the Flint ComicCon on Saturday. It should be another interesting experience.
-- Post From My iPad

Sunday, April 11, 2010

FCN going well

We are doing well at the convention. Sue is doing art directly on her iPad at the show. Looks real good.

My reactions to the con center are interesting. One thing I do not like about swelling as an allergic reaction is that it brings a lot of joint pain with it. *sigh*

-- Post From My iPad

Thursday, April 8, 2010

As ready for Furry Connection North as We are going to be

Tomorrow the con begins. We are do to be there at 10ish AM to get set up. That means leaving here before 9 and getting up at about 7. Normally this would not be a big deal, but that is getting close to my normal go to sleep time.

We have a few DS devotees at the convention, so we will be taking DS with. We only have a single table so we will only have a small space and that will be dominating the table space. People will have to ask about DS. I'll check into the gaming area and see if maybe we can set something up for next year.

I am hoping that the hotels are better for my breathing in this year. The Hotel where Ohayocon/Marcon/Origins in was a little better at Ohayocon this year. Hopefully it will stay that way. Being allergic to some common cleaning products has side effects. Feeling crappy during a con does not improve my attitude. Unfortunately I can not even blame the hotels, because it is keeping them clean that gets to me...

As for the experience with this new tangled device called an iPad. It is a wonderful, useful and worthy accessory. It is not a computer, jus a very good tool. It is definitely making some jobs, like writing much easier. It looks like it will also be helping out with our accounting. This tool is good for doing one thing at a time. That means if you need two or three programs open to do your work, you will be better off on a computer. If you get one of these, do not expect it to be a computer, it was obviously not designed to be a computer. Expect it to be a device that let's you perform specific tasks like blogging, writing or personal accounting, e-mail, read the news, or look at Porno. Tasks like my laying out publishing sheets etc. It is increasing my productivity, and is worth it. It is the device between a phone and a computer that my work flow has been missing.

-- Post From My iPad

convention packing here at the Secret Clanhold

Sue has taken her brother in to the hospital for some tests today. I am here packing for the con tomorrow. FCN is about an hour down the road from us here, so we will be driving back and forth for the next three days.

I will have a small amount of DS at the con with us, including the new sets. Since we will be back home each night I can bring what we need to the show the next day. I am doing the same thing with Sue's art prints as well. If we have a shortage I can print at night from home.

Sue just arrived. I am going to get me a hug!

-- Post From My iPad

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Aftermath of the Game

We played much longer than usual last night. Eventually we managed to battle six of the new Mighty Madspawn, so the evenings scheduled work, including testing the Unicorn shifter school for the new game, had to be put on hold.

With a Van half filled with scraps from the kitchen remodeling the con prep for this weekend is getting messed up as well. I need to load up some more trash and get my posterior to the city dump.

I also have not finished the web work associated with yesterdays shipping and new sets. Right after getting the e-mails under control I will get on the web work. Then yard maintenance really needs attention, the grass is starting to a serious grow going so there is "stuff" that needs doing or I will be behind all spring. This afternoon I will get an answer from Sue about the Mighty Madspawn Guidelines and get those tweaked files up tonight.

It has been suggested that we do the AROC cards as two nine card sets instead of a single 18 card set. I think I can divide them that way, and may well do so. Those sets have to be completed and ready to go during the convention this weekend. I will see how that works out...

I have done a lot of organizational work this winter to get the main floor of the house ready to start having people come up and play a few games with us here. It may be a way of getting in better touch with people and to sell some games and artwork direct, and it could be fun. We have a couple of cheap hotels not far away that have good access to food etc. So we can get the info on those and make it available. Long term planning goes on.

Sometimes, with everything going on I wonder about the sanity of doing another game. The problem for us is that we need more than one game world to play to stay interested in the old world. So far nobody is publishing an rpg that we want to play as a second game. They are just too this or that and do not suite us. I guess we are too picky, but we want fun stuff.

I really liked running the Mighty Madspawn last night. I was able to challenge a 1300 card point group with just a few cards. I am going to create a set of weaker Mighty Madspawn with the idea of few cards on them and start using them when we play DS. It makes the GM's duties easier. I just need some bad guys between these monsters and the regular Prime Spawn.

Ok, enough of this. Typing has become easier and quicker on this iPad than ever before, and I think I am getting carried away. I was actually happy with the ease of writing up the MM guidelines went at 3 AM. I just need Sue to look and see if my nocturnal writing made any sense at all. I am going to go make breakfast for Sue NOW!

-- Post From My iPad

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Aristotle is the Real deal

Aristotle thinks the Valarians and Rogues that came at him should have stayed longer. He only killed one. The characters are thinking they should have run just a little sooner. Finally a clear Mighty Madspawn victory.

-- Post From My iPad

Cherry is embarrassed.

Players are way too smart. Cherry dies like a dog.

-- Post From My iPad

Verang sends them packing.

The party gave it there best shot but the Mighty Madspawn Verang sent the party packing. Only timely use of Share prevented a couple of deaths. Well played, but he was just too much for a 1300 card point party.

-- Post From My iPad

Rerrith falls, Mighty Madspawn having trouble

Rerrith died in the sixth round. The characters were discussing escape as he died. It was close.

-- Post From My iPad

Marlly is dead.

1300 in characters. Marlly died in round two.

-- Post From My iPad

And Now They Assemble to meet the Mighty Madspawn

Word has gone out. The Renich Temple sits on the edge of the warp line, we are using it as a base for Cleansing the warped areas. Obviously we have pushed Black Bane far enough that he has sent one of the Mighty Madspawn to tear it down. The local Valarians have been scattered, there moral broken by the sight of the monsters. We need this one destroyed to show that it is possible to defeat these things.

-- Post From My iPad

Monday, April 5, 2010

Monday Morning Thinking in the Clanhold

Sue is feeling poorly this morning, she has picked up a migraine and reactions to all of the nasty green stuff outside. Myself, I am doing pretty well, just a few sniffles. Another cup of strong coffee will solve all my problems.

I will be spending my day getting at the backlog of work caused by tax season. I will go back and double check the numbers this afternoon, then comes the check writing part of the taxes.

I have been reading the good and bad reviews of the iPad. Interesting reading. My personal experience so is that it is an amazing tool that does what it was designed to do, but like all tools you need to look carefully and decide if you need it. The iPad will be an asset to writers, e-bayers, and anyone who has abandoned the TV world. I love this keyboard, how do I get one on my computer?

-- Post From My iPad

Sunday, April 4, 2010

This is the first day of the rest of my life. I think I like it.

Well then let me see what I can do to get this started. It seems to me that it was a tough day to get started. The morning saw me trying a few new things with the iPad. It has also made me wonder about the future of this world. Soon we will all be able to access the world through the Internet. This will bring with it both positive and negative responses. Some will do everything they can to try to maintain the fascist controls of the current era. Some will try to retreat into the medieval past, and maybe they like the famines among the peasants, who knows. For myself I have got to stick my head up and take a look at what tomorrow will bring us.

The first thing that tomorrow has brought me is a keyboard theta suites my four finger typing methods. My big problem now is going to be trying to figure out how to make all data entry this fast and efficient. I know that it is a new idea and that it will not work for all, but I am much faster on the iPad keyboard than on any keyboard I have used before. It could even bring some fun back into the entering of letters to an article.

Now, if I can get my thoughts all going in the same direction I could solve a whole slew of problems. What about this government thing. Ah yes, I have a solution, but no one wants a solution, no money, no bribes, no cheating to be fun. My solution only benefits the people and the few remaining capitalists. I fear that the fascists of the welfare corporations are not going to give up there immorally gained power and money. They no longer even recognize capitalism, they firmly being on the government dole is capitalism. It is not. That is a welfare corporation.

WOW! All of these words typed in a single sitting, just cranking out miscellaneous
Thoughts. I had better stop this and fire up another episode of Babylon 5

-- Post From My iPad

More Experimenting

I do not know what happens when I turn on Facebook in this app, but I will know soon.

-- Post From My iPad

just getting used to the Ipad

Life is filled with experiments, and this is one. I have picked up a blogging app for the iPad and now we shall see how it works.

I really like the way they set up the emailer on the pad. I read a comment that it makes email almost fun, it is true.

-- Post From My iPhone

Blogging from the Ipad

I am sitting here with the iPad typing away merrily. We shall see how this works. I had to go the "HTML" instead of the "compose" section to get the ability to enter when signed in and doing this "on-line". I will start looking for an app that allows remote entry.

The first question that I had was how the keyboard was going to work. I have the answer and it is great for those of us who practice the "hunt and peck" method of typing. I am going to guess that it is easily faster than a keyboard. I will have to hook up the Bluetooth keyboard for a test, but I think I will not need it.

Susan's first art that came off of her Ipad looks amazing. She is going to be able to do a lot with one of these.

Yes, we have ipads

We are still exploring the devices, but I can tell you that they are better than I expected. Artwork, accounting, writing and easy to handle anywhere, (So far).

There is so much in this little package that it is going to take a while to learn what it can really do.

I got more done on the new game with this in the first day than I had dreamed possible.

More latter.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Ipad, and more

Well, I did not get an iphone, no touch. I did not see enough to go there. I stuck with a Classic for music. But the ipad will have work programs. In fact for $19.90 I can get both Word and Excel compatible programs for reading and writing. So, mine arrives tomorrow, they tell me.

Right now I am doing taxes, so I am not in the best of moods... I should complete them today.

Monday, March 29, 2010

A New Week, and another nap.

I'm not sure why, but I seem to be in need of a nap every few hours here this spring. I can't put my finger on it, but I keep getting drowsy, when I should be working.

My mother is doing well back at home after her hospital visit. Sue's mom is experiencing a good deal of swelling and has gained a rash on the hip. She is going to the doctor tomorrow for further information.

I am continuing to put together potential DS cards sets as PDF's. The printer is getting slower and slower on delivery and they are starting to make me nervous.

Sue is starting on the art for the Elemental sets. Most of the art is done for the AROC sponsored cards.

I am having to dig into some of our old card ideas and into the new card ideas to fill out the nine card sets. Luckily we have a lot of unprinted simple cards we use.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

I keep starting Blog entries...

The old brain is in a malaise here at the clanhold. I have become certain that everything bad has already happened and I can't get my head around it. Darned depressing. Everytime I actually research one of the "end of the world" scenarios they turn out to be wrong. Do any of these so called "news" people do any research? I always thought the National Enquirer just created titles for articles for stories and then made up a story for it. I am starting to believe the National Enquirer has become the supplier for all news. Then I noticed that news channels have laid off their research staffs. They really are making it up.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Saturday Off, mothers in hospitals, and so on.

OK, taking today off from work, but I think I will make a blog post. WOW! Here it is!

My mom is improving rapidly, her blood clot has disolved and she s in rehab getting her strength back. She needs it because she really needs to be able to take care of herself. She is one of those people who need to be able to tend to her own needs.

Sue's mom had hip replacement surgery yesterday. It went well. Sue is up there right now. She is in a better hospital. Sue and I have no breathing troubles there. The rehab is also much better organized and than my Mother's hospital. *sigh* Some hospitals are better than others.

I am not managing to keep a regular work schedule, but I am lining up projects and completeing them one at a time. The DS website is reworked. The Travels of Kit are up to date. Basic work on Sue's new comic (Familiar Place) is underway.

Our "Food Plan" has been difficult to maintain, but both Sue and I are dropping weight slowly. It is about time.

Enough for today.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Mother's, work and plans

My mother is in rehab to get ready to adjust for returning home. We have a "family" doctor visit scheduled for tuesday morning. We shall see. Sue's mom goes in at the end of the week for hip replacement surgery and then some recovery time. So we are in for more time consumption. What can you do. They are mothers.

As far as work, we have more to do than we can do. Therefore some work must end. Tomorrow I will be replacing the Dragon Storm site. It is shrinking and we are pulling the Deluxe cards entirely. I am also going to start dropping blogs and folding them together. The first blog to go will be the DS Beta blog. It takes too much time to track etc. I will be looking around for a place to make a combined game blog. Maybe "Game News from the Clanhold".

Plans, we making them. Step one is to assemble a complete core rules set for the new games.

OK, laundry is calling, must go.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Some days are hard to start

I wonder what it is that causes the mind to avoid the issues we really need to face? This morning I am having a great difficulty in getting to the work I know I should do. The kitchen floor and basement stairs are clean, dishes done, laundry started. All tasks that I have found while I try to get my mind to grasp the work I need to be doing. I can't seem to focus on a single detail to begin on. The tasks are appearing as whole with no handles. Many times I just sit during these freezes and do nothing but try to focus. Today I am going to try doing house cleaning chores. They need to be done anyway. Maybe it will help.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Mom, Webpage and other thoughts

Since Friday I have been spending the first few hours of my day visiting my mother in the hospital. She has a blood Clot in her lung, and pneumonia. She is doing better, but the process has weakened her, she may be staying for rehab.

I keep finding "things" that I feel I have to have in the new DS website before I can delete the old site and put up the new site. Very soon I am going to say that is enough and put it up. I can then add a page a day for a couple of months and be set.

I need to spend some time on the phone to the printer today arranging and making sure the sets I have in will be here soon. I also need to prep the next batch of sets and get them posted.

I have been visiting the hospital my mother is in for several years now at different times. Maybe because I just see "slices" in time I can see the slow degeneration of the hospitals efficiency. Little things, getting the diabetic diet wrong, and having to boost insulin to compensate. Not being able to find anyone trained to do my mom's type of dialysis, apparently it is too new, even though she has been on it for three years (through another local hospital). After the kidney doctor was in and heard some thoughts about the care I found him outside at the empty nurses station on the phone. He was upset. He found the fact that he was phoning from an empty nurses station unsettling, to say the least. Yesterday my mother said "I can't understand what has happened to this place, it used to be so good." So even she has seen the changes. Not good, but we are not living in the middle of the slow decline, maybe we can see it better than if you are in the middle of the chaos. To be fair we encountered several efficient, friendly staff members and they deserve applause for continuing to do good in a declining system.

Sometimes seeing these incidents makes me look around to see if I can see a decline in other organizations around me. I believe I see it. I think our general standards are declining around us, but it is best if I shut up and get back to work. My paranoia is high today.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Yes, weight goes down and change is coming

The new "food Plan" is working so far. Sue and I have stuck on it three whole days. Both of us are on edge a little, but overall it is not bad. Dropping a pound a day, probably too fast, but it may be the only way. I have 10 pounds to lose to get down to average BMI.

With all of the changes in Dragon Storm brought on by converting to the Standard cards it will require a complete change to the website. I might just as well take the jump and replace the whole thing. For the past several years I have just hung more on the old framework. It is now so jumbled that I can not even find stuff. Time for a change. The plan is to start with just a few pages and then rebuild a page or two a day until it is all back. I am going to go ahead and pull all of the deluxe cards except for the few we will be keeping. I am also going to size the pages for the coming of the Ipad, and all of the tablets which will follow it. They will still run on computers just fine, so that will work as well.

I think the idea that a table top rpg gamer can get to the full web will have some very interesting results. It should be possible to create entire scenarios that can be played off of the pad with just dice and paper to track damage, cast attitudes etc. I am not sure how that will work, but I am looking at it very seriously. Being able to sit down and dial up a game for the night would be interesting. All you would have to do is modify it for your style on the fly and play.

Tomorrow work begins on reworking the kitchen. The kitchen sink water pipes blew in early january. They go out of the house to the sink. Rather than repair a system that will just blow again, we are moving the sink to the other end. Plumbing, counters and some electrical work is coming my way. I am certain that once it starts coming apart that I will find way more problems than I expect. It is always like that.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A time for a new "food plan"

Both Sue and I have been stalled in our weight loss. Therefore we are trying a new "food plan". We shall see if it works and if we can maintain it. We are eating small amounts of good food several times a day. If it works I will tell how we did it.

WOW! first player for tonights game is here, time to go.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Far too much going on in my mind

I seem to have too many thoughts floating through the old brain bucket. I find myself following one string after another across my mindscape. Unfortunately my attention wanders and I become entranced by another fleeting thought. Well, the result is several dozen unfinished ideas. Far more than I can actually follow.

I will see what I can do about exposing a few of the ideas.

A subject I spent far too much time mulling over is: does one play a character in an alien world or are they playing the rules with a characterization? In one case a person is immersed in the world and they stretch themselves to see from a new viewpoint. In the second the player is surfing the world on top of the rules. Both are valid and fun. In reality the acting community acknowledges these styles as Method Acting and Classic Acting. There are, in both role-playing and acting, a blend of these in every session.

Why, you ask, do you consider such questions? I wandered into this one while I was working on a campaign background for the new game. The players and GM's need different information for different styles. If a player's character is played as if it was a real world, then specific rules references may interfere with there game. At the other end a person riding the rules with glee finds extensive descriptions and emotions a pain, they need the rule to go by. They question for us is how do we balance these demands in setting up everything from a single encounter to a campaign region. To be able to balance our output we need to understand the ways people are using that output.

So, there you go. If I had any sense I would actually review and rewrite these pieces, but I think I will just go on spitting out rough gems rather than carefully polishing them.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Updating the system

I am checking out all my regular programs here. I finally upgraded to Snow Leopard. So far it is looking really good.

I reworked the DS Sets page to include PDF sample pages of all the cards. It will give people a chance to try them all out and see what they think.

OK, off to check more.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Prop eyes open, poke head up, look around, back to sleep

I seem to be able to do exactly half of what I schedule for each days work. I either have to work more or just admit that I can not do it all.

I have the elemental cards and a set of Mighty Madspawn to finish cleaning up for DS. Then I need to get something else done, I just can't recall what it is now.

It looks like we have about a dozen prints and commission characters to get done. That should just about finish off my night.

Back to work.

OH! I had a great birthday!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me!

One year older and not a bit wiser. Oh well, maybe next year.

Thursday, January 28, 2010


In about 6 hours we will be on the road to columbus for Ohayocon.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Reading too much may not be so good

First I should let everyone know that Sue had a great convention in CA. However, she is one tired lady. I will be picking her up in Detroit at about 10:30 tonight.

I have been reading a lot of news with Sue gone and it has made me think about subtle changes in the world over the last 50 years. When I was a kid the news was local and short. I would not find out about pollution in Brooklyn, Cannabalism in liberia, that sitting shuts down your metabolism, cutting calorie use severely, that workers today have a lower standard of living than in the past, and on and on.

Today we are bombarded with bad news. That is not the problem, the problem is how we deal with it. Of course people are not as happy today, they know too much and seem unable to do anything about it. What we are missing is training in how to keep that news seperate from our emotional world. All of this information is just facts. I need to be able to deal with them without being angry, scared and even terrified. It wastes time and energy. I may well be able to acquire the knowledge and do something with it, not just sit (slowing my metabolism) and whine.

Strangely enough it helps my mood just writing about this. I am not going to spend time trying to "craft" a discussion, I have a lot of work facing me, so this ramble will have to do.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

To do what I want, or what I must?

Every day we face that question. Do we do the things we want to or do we do these things we must.

Life is a compromise, and it always has been. Right now there is a pile of work in front of me that I have to do. I could fill my days with work that must be done, but is that really living? Is the difference between an intelligent being and a rock that the rock always does what it must and the being does at least some of what it wants?

I am not going to be a rock, but there are some duties that I must get done before I can be myself.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Sue has arrived!

She was able to get a flight out of Phoenix this morning, after spending the night in the airport.

I am betting that Sue will be exhausted at the Con. And we have a con next weekend in Columbus. An anime con.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Stuck in Pheonix

Sue is stuck in Phoenix Arizona. Due to heavy winds etc. they have shut the airport down with Sue in it. She is checking to see what her options are...

At the Airport

I set out to take Sue to the airport at 5:30 this morning. I have done so. Now it is 9:40, Mocha Dog has been walked and reassured, now I will lie down and get some more sleep.

I hope the weather will be good out there in San Jose, or, I should hope so, since I am back here in Michigan...

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Working Steadily, it is still all uphill.

The only thing I dislike about pushing rocks up hill is that a few always roll right back down the hill. The positive part is that most of the rocks stay on top of the hill. I like to remember the positives.

Sue and I made progress on our internal organization and our ambitious plans for the future. Prioritizing tasks is not straight forward. It has to be balanced between the tasks with immediate results, those with long term value and those that are risky/uncertain.

We are going to arrange for two week periods of seclusion about four times a year so we can consider what has happened, is happening and will happen. It also gives us a chance to enjoy each other. What can I say, I really like my "Sue" time. I think t is the single most important thing in my life.

Here at the Clanhold our kitchen water pipes have finally burst. They have been freezing off and on for 20 years. It was just a matter of time. Right now I am running pans of water downstairs to do cooking etc. We are going to reconsider the kitchen carefully. The pipes go through an unheated, unprotected area currently. We would have to move the sinks to change that, but it is not a simple decision, so we will not be rushed into a bad choice.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Off to help my Mom. Pre-Order DS Standard Sets?

My Mom needs a vehicle for traveling to the Doctors Offices today. That is what I will be doing. Just routine check-ups for her Dialysis etc.

I have started putting together 9 card sets of Universal cards. We have a lot of Universal cards to do. I am hoping to finish setting them up late today and tomorrow. My plan is to make a PDF for each set like the Witchcraft Set, where one page has notes and the second page has the sample cards. It should make it a lot easier for people to decide how many of which sets you want.

We are really hoping that the printing costs of these can be covered by Pre-Orders. We already have a nice Pre-Order for the Witchcraft card set.

I am not sure how fast to release the sets. I have ten Universal sets done so far. How many should I list at a time? How many per month would be reasonable? At $12.00 per four sets on Pre-Order can we do four per month? That would be $48.00 per month to keep up with the Pre-Orders. How many of you would be willing to do that?

I am also wondering about setting up a list of people that would want to "subscribe" to the Pre-Orders. I could send out PayPal Invoices to you that could be paid on-line or by mailing in a check. It would help our cash flow to know what we were doing, and what you would be willing to do.

Thanks, Mark

Monday, January 4, 2010