Wednesday, 18 January 2017

09:55 – Barbara is off to the gym. It was 48.4F (9C) when I took Colin out this morning, but we’re back to having a stiff breeze with high wind gusts, so it felt a lot colder than yesterday morning.

I saw an article yesterday that listed the ten windiest big cities during 2016. Winston-Salem was #8 on that list. But that list only included major cities. Here in Sparta, our winds make Winston-Salem’s look calm. In the mountain passes around here–we call them “gaps”–cars, pickups, and even tractor-trailers are often literally blown off the roads by wind gusts that are often 60 MPH (100 KPH) or more, sometimes even 90 MPH. This would be a good location to install a small wind turbine system, because calm days are few and far between. I don’t plan to do that because it’s very expensive and requires too much maintenance. Solar is a better bet for us.

With a couple weeks left in the month, we’re at about 94% of revenue for January 2015. Science kits have been flying off the shelves, but that could stop at any time. Sales usually drop dead in late January or early February, after people have ordered kits for the Winter semester. We’re in good shape for now on kits, with what we need to build more of them on the fly, if needed.

I finished the copy-edit pass on the draft manuscript of Franklin Horton’s latest Borrowed World series book and got it off to him yesterday. He emailed me last night to say he’d gone through my suggestions, and intended to have a final manuscript finished by the end of the week. It won’t be long after that before he has it up on Amazon. I’ll announce that here for anyone who wants to buy a copy.

And I started drafting a PA novel of my own, just to see if I could do it. It’s just chapter fragments right now, but I’m up to about 11,000 words. I think it reads well, but I’m going to send Franklin a copy to see what he thinks. If he thinks I can write fiction, I’ll probably finish it up and self-publish it. I’m cranking out about 1,000 words per hour, which means if I work heads-down on it I could finish a first draft of a 100,000 word novel in about three weeks.

WordPress is giving me fits. When I started using it in mid-2011, I checked the box to tell it to accept comments only from readers who had a previously-approved comment. That worked fine until two or three weeks ago, when WordPress for some reason took a sudden dislike to three of my frequent commenters, Ray Thompson, Cowboy Slim, and ech. Since then, WP has held every one of their comments for moderation and I’ve had to approve them one by one. So this morning, I unchecked the box that tells WP to hold unapproved commenters’ comments for moderation. We’ll see what happens. In the meantime, if you spot a spam comment that slipped through, please let me know.