Thursday, December 4, 2014

Goodreads Friends Limit

Goodreads keeps deleting my friends. Ever since they instituted the 5,000 friend limit, it’s been a personal gripe of mine. Other authors definitely feel the same. Just look at Neil Gaiman who lost over 4,000 friends on Goodreads when they lowered his friend count from 9,000 to 5,000.

The thing is, I keep getting new friend requests every day, particularly from the cool folks I meet on Twitter who also want to stay connected on Goodreads. However, if and when I add them, one of my other friends gets randomly removed about a week or so later. Blah.

Anybody else having this issue? Any workarounds that you have discovered? Don’t get me wrong, I love using Goodreads, but man I really wish they would change this particular friend requirement.

Friday, November 21, 2014

San Francisco Olympics Bid 2024

San Francisco has put in its bid for hosting the 2024 Summer Olympics, and is currently one of the top finalists vying for the honor. As an avid sports and Olympics fan, I’m particularly stoked for this opportunity because the San Francisco Bay Area is my home. And, the proposed stadium and Olympic Village would be built just a few miles from my house. Sweet!!!

But of course, 2024 is a long way off, and the bidding begins in earnest for the U.S. candidate city in 2015 with the International Olympic Committee choosing the winning city in 2017. However, only 4 U.S. cities remain in the running: L.A., D.C., Boston, and the City by the Bay. On top of that, we’ll have some stiff international competition from cities such as Paris and Rome.

However, it’ll have been almost 30 years since the U.S. hosted an Olympics, and the IOC is said to be particularly inclined to select a U.S. city for 2024. Especially since few other locations can offer the increased security and economic infrastructure that the games demand. Whatever happens, I’m just glad my hometown is in the running, and I sincerely hope to someday attend the Olympics in person with my children. Fingers crossed!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

La Boheme

This weekend, my wife and I went to see La Boheme at the San Francisco Opera. Needless to say, it was pretty darn awesome! I'd definitely recommend it to first time visitors as well as frequent opera-goers.

Puccini was certainly a genius, mixing all the elements of a good story, particularly his use of tension and comedy. I was surprised how much I laughed during this opera. Even after a hundred years there are some pretty good jokes in this piece.

The music was really great too. If you've seen the movie Moonstruck, you'll recognize a lot of the signature songs. Most of us won't get to Paris any time soon, but if not, check out La Boheme and I guarantee you won't be disappointed. 

Monday, November 3, 2014

Finished First Draft of Sequel!!!

Whew! It took me about twelve weeks, but I just recently churned out the first draft of my sequel to Between Two Fires, entitled The Long Defeat. Now for the edits and rewrites.

The Long Defeat follows what happens after my debut novel, Between Two Fires, and the continued struggles of the medieval Welsh trying to survive barbarian invasions. As part of my two-book deal with St. Martin’s Press, I need to provide the sequel to my publishers in addition to my first book so that we can make sure to follow up my debut novel when it comes out in bookstores about a year from now.

In the meantime, in addition to my usual awesome readers, I’m looking for any other beta readers interested in reading anywhere from one chapter to the full length draft of my new book. I of course reciprocate, and would be more than happy to beta read any of your work. Any takers? 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Giving a Talk to Students

I gave my first talk to college students at my alma mater, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo on Monday evening. It was pretty rad being part of a panel of other talented folks who use writing and new media in their every day jobs. I talked a lot about my work as a Technical Writer, but also got to connect with students afterwards regarding my fiction writing as well.

I am both flattered and thankful that Cal Poly Career Services reached out to me and invited me to talk at this awesome event. I remember all those feelings, fears, and doubts I had when I was finishing up my college career, wondering what I was going to do with the rest of my life. It was really rewarding to get to share my experiences with other students both in Liberal Arts and other disciplines as they decide how best to begin their careers in writing and other new media fields.

It’s funny to think that seven years ago I was finish up my masters and had no job or apparent prospects on the horizon. Since then I’ve worked as a Tech Writer at places like Google and Facebook, and now have my two-book deal signed with St. Martin’s press for my novels. Here’s to the next seven years, may they be as fun and invigorating!   

Monday, October 20, 2014

Go Giants!!!

Let’s go Giants! For the 3rd time in 5 years my home team has made it to the World Series, and as you can imagine, I’m pumped! After decades of watching the Giants through loss and lean years when I was growing up, I’m enjoying some of the most amazing baseball I’ve ever seen these past few seasons.

To top it off, we got here with a walk-off homer from Ishikawa, eerily reminiscent of when Bobby Thompson did the same thing to the Dodgers back in 1951. I actually got a little misty eyed watching the game (don’t laugh). The Giants win the Pennant!  It’s a great time to be a Giants fan! 

(Note: The video isn't mine, but it gives you a fan's perspective:) )

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The Cool Kids

I’ve been pretty crazy swamped with writing lately, and the pace isn’t likely to slow down anytime soon. But I wanted to make sure to check in with all of you! I’m getting close to finishing the first draft of my sequel, and I should have the edits back from my publisher for my first novel any day now. On top of that I have other pet projects and short stories I’ve committed to, so I’m getting pretty nose-to-the-grindstone lately, but at least it’s fun!

Anyhow, this song has been in my head lately as I write and ruminate, so I thought I’d share it with you. A pretty talented bunch of young musicians, not to mention they’re all siblings. Enjoy!