Is this thing on? Hello, everyone. I’m overdue for a summary of What’s Up With Fred. Here goes…

Life in General: Busy. I just finished a two-week work trip and have another coming up in March. In-between trips, I’m buried in planning an event that will follow later this year. My Lovely Wife is having a reasonably trouble-free year with her kindergarten class, which means they’re only one-and-one-half handfuls. The Eldest Son is settling into his new job as a local community police officer. It’s been an eye-opening experience, but he’s enjoying it very much. People on both sides of the law seem to find him very approachable, which is a helpful quality. The Current Collegiate is nearing the end of his undergraduate studies and is planning to pursue a career in education…as a teacher, not a student. I am both proud and relieved.

The Darling Daughter: Merits her own paragraph. She received a nomination to the U.S. Air Force Academy from our Senator, and is awaiting the outcome of the Academy’s selection board, which is the hardest part of this whole process. In the meantime, we have to keep alternatives in play, such as ROTC (which has its own selection bureaucracy), and applications for any and all other scholarships for which she’s eligible. Plan B looks like it will probably be Engineering studies at the University of Kansas, 20 miles west of here, which has already accepted her for admission. Rock Chalk Jayhawk, y’all. Add to this the usual high school activities, last-semester/graduation fooferaw, leadership in the FIRST Robotics team, part-time job, etc, and…well, if you  have or had kids in high school, you know the drill.

Fun Stuff: My Lovely Wife bought me a Smith & Wesson 22a target pistol for Christmas, which was a major step for her…she’s very comfortable with the idea of having a shotgun around the house, but handguns? Not so much. Anyhow, I took it out to the range last weekend with The Eldest Son, giving us an opportunity for a little male bonding (and him a chance to impress me with his police marksmanship training). I was very pleased with my .22 pistol. It was very accurate, and smooth as butter. Next time, the LW gets to shoot it, and I may need to start shopping for something in pink.

Writing: When I get busy, my writing tends to follow the path of least resistance. The past couple of months, it’s been mostly my weekly column at Speculative Faith and episodes of my contribution to the Avenir Eclectia über-serial (and there’s a new one of those out today). Though I’m pleased with how both these activities are proceeding, I do need to get back on my horse, crank out some short stories, and finish the draft of my third novel in the Muse trilogy, tentatively titled, The Poet.

This Blog: You may have noticed the recent facelift. I’m trying to increase my posting rate, which has fallen off a bit with all the busyness. Several book reviews are on the way, including C.S. Lakin’s The Land of Darkness, Jill Williamson’s Replication: The Jason Experiment, and the last volume of Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games trilogy, Mockingjay. I’m also overdue for a feature on Paeter Frandsen’s excellent SpiritBlade Underground Podcast, and there are a few anime, manga, and comics reviews in the works. Should be fun.

Splashdown Books: Though I’ve been bogged-down of late, my compatriots at Splashdown Books have not. Of note are the imminent release of Diane Graham’s much-anticipated debut novel, I Am Ocilla and the third book in Caprice Hokstad’s Ascendency Trilogy, Blood and Brine. Caprice has made a potentially disastrous wager linked to sales of her books between now and March 5th, so give this poor, unfortunate soul a little push, if you can. Mwah-ha-haDetails here. There’s also an album of electronic ambient tunes from Michael L. Rogers inspired by Avenir Eclectia and eminently suitable as background music for reading stories from AE or most any other universe of imagination you may frequent.

That’s all for now. I hear my robot Overlords (Did I say Overlords? I meant Protectors) approaching, and if I don’t get back to work, they’ll….

>>>signal interrupted<<<


6 thoughts on “Whuzzup

  1. Thanks for the shout-out and the links, Fred! Nothing would make me happier than to have to “pay up” on that bet. Yes, I’d lose some dignity, but it would be worth it. Dignity doesn’t pay the rent. Good luck to your daughter. That would be so awesome if she got into the AF Academy. My dad really wanted me to try for Annapolis, but I was too chicken. Ah, regrets.

    1. You’re welcome, Caprice. I thought that was a pretty clever idea you came up with. So many great songs in that movie (“Then I cut off your head…it don’t hurt, ’cause you’re dead, and you’re certainly lucky you are…”) Good luck with the sale and your new release!

  2. Definitely sounds busy. If I were you, I’d be more worried about the son who wants to be a teacher than the one whose already a policeman. Probably more dangerous and probably less likely to get to do any of what he actually wants to be there for…

    As you may have noticed, I’ve returned to the blogosphere. I’m flitting here and there like some sort of little blue flitting thing saying hello to people.

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