Tag Archives: Otto

An old reminder, enhanced by puppies

It's one of my favorite old sayings, and it came back to me in the comments of my last post. I've been whining about having too much to do. While blogland appreciates a good rant, they don't like it when it drifts into whiny territory.

I've been at this point before, and I will be there again no doubt. How do you eat an elephant?

Task lists are the elephant. I'll do what I can, when I can, and it will all get finished. It's a constant effort to remind myself there is no supervisor that's going to be upset with my progress. That's the paycheck world.

Even puppies know that a bunch of small efforts can add up. It took two weeks, but they slew the giant.

Note: Otto is fine. He is regressing to puppy mode and plays with the girls constantly now.

My wife and I are taking our mini vacation, and I'm not going to worry about this stuff. When I return, my tasks will still be waiting, and the elephant should be properly aged to make for fine dining.

I never mentioned it, because I thought I might play the “Where is Craig” game with you. It didn't work out so well when we went to Jackson, Wyoming, so I'll skip it. We are spending our holiday weekend in New Orleans. Neither of us have ever been there, and we're both pretty excited.

We don't have an agenda, but we are booked into the walking tour of New Orleans Voodoo one night. I hope to take some cool photos and maybe buy some fun stuff. We will no doubt find some beignets and some good seafood. I want to sneak a peek at their telephone book too. I constantly struggle to come up with decent character names, and this could be a great resource.

We're going to be staying relatively close to a site where a big shootout went down in The Playground. I'm tempted to take a cab and see how wrong I got it, but that might encroach onto my wife's plans. Some of the sites in Panama burned down years ago, but I might do a quick search for them too.

Come back tomorrow for Lisa Burton Radio. I'll get to play in the comments, and share it everywhere. After that, I'll update from the road, but it might be sporadic.

42 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

A Funny Thing Happened on the way to Twin Falls

We slept in a bit today, because the breeder offered to meet us in Twin Falls, instead of making us drive all the way to Burley. We loaded our new puppy bed, new toys, etc., making sure we had a bowl and some fresh water.

The breeder said the whole litter was spoken for, but she wasn't sure about one of the buyers. They want her to ship their puppy to Florida. They also never made a deposit. The breeder told them she would not ship, but they could still buy the puppy if they flew to Idaho, and held her on their laps on the return journey.

To fully appreciate this, you need to know a couple of things. These puppies are ten weeks old. That's a huge difference than say, ten months old. Bulldogs are also one of the brachycephalic breeds. This means, among other things, they have pushed in faces that interfere with breathing. Cargo holds do not get extra oxygen or heat.

They were still debating whether someone could fly to Idaho to pick up the puppy, until we solved the problem for everyone.

So in a nutshell, Frankie is the dark one. The other one is Nyx. (My wife named her, sorry Charles.) They're both pretty lively, and Nyx is a major cuddler.

Otto is their half brother, and he seems well pleased with the situation.

Right now, they're all out back and hopping around like a bunch of frogs. Otto keeps following me to the garage, like he expects me to bring another load of puppies inside. I'm pretty sure this is enough.

We're such suckers. Honestly, what would you have done?

It's been a long drive, and I'm ready to kick back. I'll post a video on Facebook of the girls and an old flip flop.

55 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Short and sweet

Today was a day of errands and correspondence. We watched the Kentucky Derby, and will head for the movie theater in an hour or so. Is it ever not muddy at the Kentucky Derby?

I usually watch the pregame show for the Derby too, but errands got in the way. Since I'm going to write a story called The Hat, I kind of wanted to see all the girls in big hats for research purposes.

The errands were important though. We bought a bag of puppy chow, a new doggie bed, a tiny little harness and leash, a new bowl, and some new baby toys. While we were out, the breeder sent us a few pictures.

This is the sweet part of my post.

Just look at that face.

A very patient cat helped lend a bit of size perspective here.

Next Saturday, we'll drive back to Burley and pick her up. Otto loved the puppies when we visited, but I hope he isn't a toy hog. He's going to have to share with Frankie from next week on.

40 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Blogging in arrears

I missed my usual Friday night post. The beta reads for The Enhanced League are pouring in, and I kind of want to jump right into my modifications. Experience has taught me not to do this, but the heart wants what the heart wants. It's better to get them all and look for the similar comments and address those first.

To distract myself, I turned my efforts to Lisa Burton Radio. I had several in various stages, because of my trip to Kentucky and all the catching up from being gone. I'm happy to be all caught up on that front, and Lisa's Thursday show is all scheduled.

Sean Harrington delivered the last poster for The Enhanced League, and they all look fabulous. I'm sure Lisa and I will need to have a discussion about proper baseball footwear, but I already know what she's going to say. Robot girl legs are probably more resilient than human legs.

Speaking of Sean, I sent him a fresh new inquiry about The Yak Guy Project. I haven't even started editing, and it needs some time to ferment, but it pays to plan ahead.

We're going to Guardians of the Galaxy II tonight, and I'm pretty stoked about it. My next project will be a paranormal adventure, but it's going to have a lot of fun/cranky banter. GoG has some of that going for it, so if I call it research, are my movie tickets tax deductible? Maybe I ought to dig up my last tickets to Ghost in the Shell, since it will help with my Grinders novel that I'll start in 2018.

Memory lane moment. This is what I did to my name tag at a conference last year:

It gave me a nice option to those tags that say, “Hello, my name is:” I used to write… Inigo Montoya, you killed my father, prepare to die.

I still need to get started on my short story for the anthology, and I have some reading to catch up on. This is on top of getting two books ready to go, and keeping my blog active. It's probably good to stay busy.

Today and tomorrow are my only real chance to get things done. Then I have one more hell week at work, and that event is over. I don't see any big-picture writing projects happening this weekend. There are a multitude of small ones though, and I probably ought to get to them… right after I add a new Otto video to Facebook. Old What's Her Face got one of those promotional plastic footballs yesterday. Otto thought it was scary, and took his time making it safe for all of us. (It's in pieces now.)

33 Comments

Filed under Writing

Projects and family

I managed to assemble a future Lisa Burton Radio interview early this morning, but that was about it. I don't actually have a lot of projects looming right now, so I feel pretty good about this. I hit it hard during my time off and cleared some space.

Our daughter was here, and we all had a nice visit this morning. She and my wife went to the mall, but I still didn't get a lot done. Otto was pretty lively, and I admit to spending a good chunk of time playing with him. About all I managed to do was add one line to my list of short stories. It isn't a bad idea and might make a decent Macabre Macaroni someday.

My main goal now is to finish the first draft of The Yak Guy Project. After that comes several rounds of edits on The Enhanced League. Right now it's looking like Monday is my best opportunity. I have the post over at Story Empire that day, so I'll have to monitor comments more closely. At least I hope there are comments to monitor. It's an opinion piece about “write what you know,” and I'm trying to be opinionated this time.

We had date night at Red Lobster, and got our cheddar biscuit fix. It was a nice date, but we're back home now. Nothing too spectacular, just a few hours together.

Party day was a big success once more. It started off a little slow but that was my fault. Club rules are to send in a link before it goes live so they can include it on the tour page – piece of cake. They also want the post to go live around midnight Central Daylight time. I always schedule for midnightish, so that's what I did. Then I rolled back the time by a couple of hours to make sure it was live when the club expected it to be.

Yeah, when you roll back prior to midnight it doesn't change the date. This means I had it scheduled about 23 hours later than it was supposed to be.

I got it fixed about 4:30AM and sent an emergency email to the club. They fixed me up, but it took several hours. I know I missed some of the early traffic, but it was completely my fault. What a rookie.

There was still a lot of sharing, and some great comments. I gained blog followers too. Every little bit helps. The club will tell me who won the mugs, and I hope to get them sent out PDQ.

There may be a week long delay in shipping. My paycheck job is sending me to Louisville on Tuesday for a convention. I'm excited to go somewhere new, even though I'll be working most of the time. Maybe I'll see something interesting to share with you while I'm on the road. Is there anything I can't miss while I'm there?

I keep thinking about how one week later might have been more interesting, and caused me to stay a few extra days at my own expense. I've always wanted to attend the Kentucky Derby, and I'll miss it by one week. I have a hunch some bourbon will get sampled as a consolation prize.

29 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

It’s a party, yo! #RRBC style

Welcome to my stop along the Springtime Book & Block Party route. Let’s get the preliminary stuff out of the way first. I’m giving two prizes away, and you don’t have to be a member to win. All you have to do is leave a comment, and a random draw will decide the winners. Contestants are only eligible from North America, due to the restrictive cost of shipping.

So what could you win? How about one of these awesome coffee mugs, featuring my personal assistant, and the spokesmodel for my writing career, Lisa Burton the robot girl.

Look how beautiful that marble bust looks, oh and Lisa looks nice too. These things are huge, and you’re going to want one.

This time the party took me by surprise. Last time we did one of these, I timed a book release around it, and that worked out extremely well. I don’t have a book release today, but I can still give you the tour.

At the top of my blog there are a couple of pages that might interest you. There is the standard “about me” page, but there is also a free selection of Lisa Burton paper dolls if you’d like them. I wanted to come up with some swag for an author who only has ebooks available. Make sure you print the pdf files and not the images shown.

The fun one is called Lisa Burton Radio, I’ll let her tell you about it.

“Hi everyone, welcome to the new visitors, and I see some familiar faces here too. The show is really fun, and I interview the characters from your books. At the end I include covers, bios, purchase links, whatever you want, really.

“When the post goes live, I share it to Flipboard, Stumbleupon, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and two Facebook sites. I try to help as much as I can. I’m always looking for guests, so drop me an email. If you want to check out past interviews there is a link in Craig’s sidebar. I’ll let him tell you about the sidebar, he loves his sidebar.

Thanks, Lisa. I also tweet out the five most recent interviews every week after Lisa finishes with them. My sidebar starts out with a link to obtain a free reading app. As an ebook guy, I don’t want to make it difficult for anyone to read my stories. Then I post the two most recent publications with direct links to those books. I have all the covers in a slideshow, because it doesn’t feel right to have them all on there. Lisa mentioned the blog categories, and this is where you can always find her interviews. Those of you who write speculative fiction might find some inspiration in the Idea Mill posts too. Oh, and before I forget, there is an Entertaining Stories Facebook page too, if any of you are so inclined. It’s the only place you can see videos of my dog, Otto. (Don’t laugh, I know some of you are into this stuff.)

That’s the grand tour. Hope everyone is enjoying the party, it’s one of my favorite events. I hope to have two new books coming out soon, but I got caught without them ready yet. One is a collection of short stories called The Enhanced League, about a futuristic baseball league. The other is kind of an alternate world fantasy novel called The Yak Guy Project. Coming soon, I promise.

I guess if I’m going to promote something, The Playground could use a bit of review love. I know some of you are holding shiny new Amazon gift cards at this point in the tour. The club even has a list of who you are. Mwa ha ha…

For those of you who aren’t RRBC members, this is an awesome club. We thrive on mutual support, and it’s kind of a pay it forward system. We’re growing by leaps and bounds, and we’d love to count you among our members. There are too many benefits to mention here, but things like this blog party are happening all the time. Why don’t you check it out at this link.

Party on! Sign up for your own character interview. Leave me a comment. I love interacting with everyone, and you could win a prize.

114 Comments

Filed under Writing

Meet Frankie

Did you guys miss me? The big tour is over, but it was a bunch of fun and I'm calling it a success. I had three different books crack the top 50 in their category, and Experimental Notebook #2 was at number 2 when I woke up one morning. It may have been higher, but a guy has to sleep sometime. Thank you all for making my guests feel welcome while I was visiting their sites.

We drove halfway across Idaho today. It's time to see the puppies and make a selection. Otto went with us, and his breeder is impressed with the way he turned out. He got to meet his mom and dad again, and they were so cute. We also met the mother of these puppies and she is cute too. The puppies and Otto share a father. Otto's dad is massive, and I have no doubt Otto will be too after he fills out a bit.

It rained on us the whole time, sometimes it was so heavy we couldn't see well, and it even turned to hail and snow briefly.

Here is a herd of bulldog puppies, oh and Otto's foot:

The pictures aren't great, because they don't stand still for long. Otto thinks puppies are awesome.

They're still babies, and won't be ready to move to their permanent homes until early May. It's nice to choose, and get out of the way of others. So this is Frankie and she'll be living with us after she leaves home.

Cute right? And so is the puppy. Here is a better look at her.

She's darker than Otto, but the breeder said he was dark too at her age. She could stay this dark, or may be more of a match for his copper brindle coat. Either way, she's the one we want.

Otto doesn't enjoy car rides, but he was a trooper. We stopped off at the pet store and let him choose a toy before coming home.

Tonight we're going to squeeze in date night somehow, but it might have to be pizza and beer, maybe a baseball game. Hope you guys had a great Saturday too.

45 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized