Fresh babble here! Innocent bystanders Stale babble here Who's to blame Zander's Tangle Last babble Last babble
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Zander Nyrond
Name: Zander Nyrond
Log of Smallship One - Passionate and Confused
I'm just, you know...I'm just the guy who does the thing.
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Ickle (our lady cat) has a sore foot. This is going to involve a visit to the vet.

Also, half our guttering has blown down. I found it lying in the garden yesterday evening. Having only fairly recently had our dish fixed because water had got into it from the last time, this is not good news.

Obviously I can't do anything about either of these things till Tuesday now, and I won't know how much either of them is going to cost till I've committed to do them.

And we have no spare money. Which means that when the third shoe drops, whatever that's going to be, we will be really stuffed.

If anyone can help with those things, that would be wonderful. And in the meantime, if you know anyone who hasn't looked at Avevale yet and might be prepared to leave a donation if they like what they see, please tell them about it if you happen to have a moment. We're kind of on the edge here.

Thank you.
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And here is the news...http://www.avevale.org/index.php/links/2-uncategorised/25-news-page

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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You meet her on the fringes of some tale,
Trade hasty courtesies, and hurry on,
(The mission you're engaged in must not fail)
And when you look for her, of course she's gone.
She comes and goes as lightly as a swan;
Her beauty haunts your dreams, serene and pale,
You can't forget her eyes, the way they shone,
And though the vision fades, it will not stale.

And then one day the story goes awry;
The train has left without you, and you stand
Confused and lost beneath a leaden sky
And that's the moment when she takes your hand.
She is the End of Stories, and the Cause,
And now you know the tale you're in...is yours.
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I know that some people who want my books don't like buying from Lulu, and I understand why. Their shipping charges can be horrendous, and at least one person I know of did not get the book he ordered and paid for. (I sincerely hope they've improved since then.) It's for those people that I'm jumping through all the hoops to get my books on Amazon.

But I'm going to ask you, if you possibly can, to buy from Lulu.

The reason's simple. Once I've jumped through all the hoops, and each book has been proofed, approved, ISBNed and submitted to Amazon and the other places, they take eight weeks to decide whether they want to distribute the book. There is every chance they will say no. For whatever reason. Their decision is final, and there is no appeal.

And if they say yes, if they do distribute my book, then for every copy sold, instead of the two pounds or so I get from a copy sold through Lulu, I get...well, for Three And Two it's 15p. For Tetrad 20p, for Oonaverse 22p. I'm not marking up the prices for Amazon, because that would be silly. Not counting the proof copies I have to buy, I spend nothing but my time and energy on this, and if I have to rely on Amazon sales I'll still just barely do more than break even.

I'm not doing this for pin money. This is not our holiday fund. We don't have those. This, and avevale.org, are my desperate attempt to use my abilities to help keep us financially afloat from week to week, month to month. They are certainly tremendous fun, and I love knowing that someone out there is reading my stuff, but there's also an imperative. I run out of money completely halfway through every month. Every month. This one is no exception.

So please, when you see me post about a new episode of the current story and I say "if you enjoy it, please donate," know that I'm not doing it to finance the next DVD. I'm doing it so that I can maybe pay the mortgage *and* eat, or put fuel in the car *and* have electricity to write the next bit with. So please, if you can, donate. And if you *don't* enjoy the story, for goodness sake *tell* me so I can make it better.

And if you can, please buy my books (and Jan's books) from Lulu. Because eight weeks away is a whole different month, and I am broke right now.

[personal profile] nancylebov suggests adding links to the books, which is an uncommonly good idea and the fact that I didn't think of it...well anyway:

http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/zander_nyrond will take you to a page where you can see all the books we currently have out on Lulu. Of particular interest at the moment are Tetrad and Oonaverse, the two Dracul novels, and those who don't already have it might be interested in the new edition of Two Magicians, or the omnibus containing that book, the collection Three Windows, and an extra story, Three And Two. You can also find here the Chronicles of Mershane, by Janet M Warner, otherwise known as the Countess; her books are very different from mine, and the best one to start with is still Blood On Bookwalk.

And (or possibly or) the website with the Donate buttons, where The Overly Obnoxious OIK Operation is winding to its close and a new saga is soon to begin for the Two Magicians, is http://www.avevale.org/.

Thank you for your patience.

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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Nal komerex, khesterex.

Behind here...Collapse )
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So, having proofread Tetrad and Oonaverse and set them up so that people can buy them on Lulu, I went to do the same to Three and Two, my omnibus edition of Three Windows and Two Magicians (with added Tension). Plodded through the text sorting out unnecessary page breaks and not very smart quotes and agoraphobic asterisks. Saved. Exported. Tried to upload.

And found that Lulu have changed their sizing options. The 6" x 9" format I've been using is no longer available. The nearest is A5.

I've had NO notice of this change, and I have complained, but no help for it, so I downloaded a template, got rid of all the irritating suggested formats, poured in my text, checked it again, saved, exported, tried to upload, "we do not accept pages of different sizes," screamed, swore, tried again...

Long and short of it: it got done. Three and Two (thoroughly proofread and with a slightly better cover) is now available on Lulu. One day when I can afford it, I'll pay the nine quid for a proof copy, check it, hopefully approve it, and if Amazon and the rest are happy with it, for every copy they sell at 12.99 I will receive fifteen whole pence. Welcome to the world of the real professional author, sucker.

Is it worth it? Gods know. Guess I'll find out.

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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CAPTION: TAMLAND IN CRISIS

PRINCE VARNAK: The man I am to meet in Freeport is a king himself.

MORDECAI, sword-fighting with someone, lunges forward triumphantly.

CAPTION: A SECRET MISSION

VARNAK: We'll have to travel incognito.

TSENESHI WOMAN, smiling, to MARKET TRADER: A certain amount of bruising is to be expected.

MARKET TRADER, holding WILLIBALD up with a dagger: Move and you're dead.

CAPTION: A DEADLY ABDUCTION

VARNAK, to MORDECAI: Don't worry. We'll find him.
MORDECAI: You had better.

CAPTION: THE PERFECT TIME FOR A BOAT TRIP

VARNAK, indicating a river barge: The Pride of Tamland.

VARNAK, shouting: Do you think I like this?
MORDECAI, quietly furious: Yes, I think you do, Highness.

MORDECAI, angry and scared: I have nothing if I have no magic. Nothing!

Great lock gates swing open, revealing an idyllic landscape bathed in golden light.

Brief flashes of:

A stocky shaven-headed man with a chin-beard:

Three young women, clearly sisters, bent over a book:

A big man with grizzled hair and a bulbous red nose:

A thin, ascetic-looking teacher eyeing four riotous male students disapprovingly:

A woman swathed in black gown and veils:

MORDECAI, sitting on a bed with his head in his hands.


MORDECAI, V.O.: Please be alive.

CAPTION: TWO MAGICIANS...AND A BOAT

The barge glides majestically down the river in the declining sunshine.

MORDECAI, V.O.: Oh, trust me, your Highness...this is only the beginning.

CAPTION: COMING SOON TO AVEVALE.ORG

WILLIBALD, tied to a chair, gag hanging loosely about his neck: Art tha minded to feed thy prisoner, then?

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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http://www.avevale.org/index.php/episodes-plays/10-epsodes-plays/23-the-overly-obnoxious-oik-operation has part 24 of The Overly Long Story Title, in which Ditzy's question is answered, Chervil jumps ship and the Emperor-In-Waiting is revealed.

http://www.avevale.org/index.php/guests has part four of A New Chapter, in which Mary-Sue continues to explore the mysterious realm.

Read and enjoy, and if you do, please donate. It really does help, and every contribution is appreciated. Or buy one of our books at http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/zander_nyrond if you prefer.

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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Proof copies of Tetrad and Oonaverse arrived!

Went through, removed all the unexpected blank pages and please gods most of the typoes...

...and before they go to Amazon and such I have to buy and approve another proof copy of each.

I appreciate Lulu's care and all that, but once should be enough.

Anyone who has gone ahead and bought copies already, thank you. Use the blank pages to provide your own illustrations, or something. As for the typoes, I can only apologise.

But the books do look very nice.

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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Thanks to kind friends, I have gone into the matter a little more deeply, and discovered that if I accept Lulu as my publisher of record and give up some of my revenue, they will not only provide an ISBN, but generate a bar code which I can then paste on to my thuddingly primitive cover art, and so I have done with Tetrad, Oonaverse, and this:



I've been wanting to do this for some time, ever since I found out how much I had to charge per book to make anything at all. It's only a couple of pounds cheaper than buying the two books separately, but at least you feel you're getting something for your cash. Plus, in a typically crass marketing ploy, I've bunged an extra story, Tension, in there (just in case there's anyone left who hasn't read it).

I will be doing Three Windows and Two Magicians separately as well, for those that prefer to have just one. It will be a slow process, because distribution to the far-flung realms of Amazon and such will only start to happen (assuming they approve my stuff at all) some eight weeks after I buy and approve a proof copy of each book. (This is the only point at which I have to pay anything at all--Lulu is not vanity publishing--and it's something I would have done anyway, so that's okay; just means I have to wait till I can afford it.)

So that's all happening. And finally, I can now reveal that the next thing by me on Avevale.org, after OIK has finished its run, will probably be a brand-new, never before seen sequel to Two Magicians! Yay!

Watch this space, as they say.

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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My two Dracul von Ryan novels are out now from Lulu.com!

Sadly only from Lulu as I can't afford ISBNs and suchlike fripperies, but they're there, and you can buy them if you so desire.

for Oonaverse
and
for Tetrad.

Sorry about the prices, but most of that goes to Lulu to cover costs.

Anyway, books. Yay. Go look.

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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CAPTION: THE OPERATION IS NEARLY COMPLETE

MUSIC: something martial in six-eight, gradually increasing in intensity.

APHRODITE alone on the bridge of the Valkyrie. Débris, drifting smoke and dust, small explosions.
APHRODITE (to herself): What have I done?

DITZY: Please deactivate the stasis pod.

WOMAN IN OVERALLS (into comlink): The ship will be yours within two hours.

APHRODITE's VOICE (over PA): All shipboard AI functions will be suspended--

VOICE FROM THE DARKNESS: They took me to pieces...

QUEST: I'm locked out. (Beat) We are lifting off.

The VALKYRIE speeds through space.

WEIRDLY DISTORTED VOICE: Turn back or be destroyed.

COUNCILLOR HEPPENSTALL: You...you killed him.

DeWOLLAS GoDON: My name's Conor Quest.

DITZY: I think you're scared.
ZANDER: Bright girl.

The PIRATE SHIP zooms towards camera, guns blazing.

The VALKYRIE fires all its weapons.

A SHUTTLE is hit by weapons fire.

MUSIC stops dead.

Close-up of a MAN's FACE, handsome, aristocratic, implacable and quite mad.

MAN; Welcome, my friends...to the Imperial Court.

CAPTION: THE OVERLY OBNOXIOUS OIK OPERATION

CAPTION: SEE IT FIRST ON AVEVALE.ORG

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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http://www.avevale.org/index.php/episodes-plays/10-epsodes-plays/23-the-overly-obnoxious-oik-operation for part 23 of OIK,in which DeWollas GoDon cools off, Cyrus Chervil gets a job and the dark secret of the Triumphant Valkyrie begins to emerge.

http://www.avevale.org/index.php/guests for part 3 of A New Chapter, in which Hob's Hurst reveals more of its mysteries.

Please read, enjoy, and if you do, please donate.

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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For those of you who may have been interested in our ongoing Nyrond tale The Overly Obnoxious OIK Operation, currently unfolding over at avevale.org, I can now reveal that it has an ending!

Yes, our long national nightmare is nearly over. In about seven weeks, the last episode will be posted up, and from that point on you'll be able to obtain the entire thing (all approximately 135,000 words of it) in the popular EPUB, MOBI, PDF or DOC formats, or even less popular ones if you wish, by emailing me and making an appropriate donation (i.e. whatever you think right and/or can afford). That should give us time to tweak, edit, revise, proofread (assuming Marion has a window in her diary) and iron out any strange formatting problems which may arise.

I'm really pleased with it. I think it's our best work yet. Certainly one of our longest. :)

Work on the paper versions of Tetrad, Oonaverse and The Lost Goats has been on hiatus for a while because of this, but will resume very shortly, and OIK will join the queue in due course.

Thank you all for your support. I couldn't do this without you.

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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http://www.avevale.org/index.php/episodes-plays/10-epsodes-plays/23-the-overly-obnoxious-oik-operation will now take you to part 22 of The Overly Obnoxious OIK Operation, in which Ditzy asks a question, Caedmon finds an answer and DeWollas GoDon sees life from another angle.

And the mystery deepens in part two of A New Chapter, by Sam Armitage, on the Guests page at http://www.avevale.org/index.php/guests .

Please read, enjoy, and if you do, please consider leaving a donation. Thank you.

Originally posted on http://avevale_intelligencer.dreamwidth.org. Comment here or there or both if you wish.
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I appear to have written over fifteen thousand words in three days.

Gods, if I could manage that all the time...I might actually be able to make a go of this writing lark.

There will be another episode of OIK, and some more of Sam's A New Chapter, tomorrow. Er, later today. After I've put the damn clocks forward. At which point it'll be even later today.
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A while back, in that haven of reasoned discussion and dispassionate debate we call Facebook, I advanced the argument (in response to a quoted statement that the world would be better if we all became vegetarian) that if we all became vegetarian (which I think is unlikely) then all the animals in the world would suddenly be between us and the food, which historically has not been a very good place to be. I was roundly chastised for daring to argue with a Self-Evident Truth, and specifically for erecting a straw man.

Well, I'm not sure. I think there were bones in that straw. However, I went away and thought about other things, and then this morning what do I see but a basket of adorable little piglets and the caption "Seven reasons to ditch bacon."

Okay, let's try erecting this man one limb at a time, like Hangman in reverse, and we'll see if he's all straw or something a bit more solid.

Left Leg: Every person who ditches bacon is one less person buying bacon.

Right Leg: Every person not buying bacon is one less reason for shops to stock bacon.

Left Arm: Every shop not stocking bacon is one less reason for suppliers to pay for bacon.

Right Arm: Every supplier not paying for bacon is one less reason for farmers to raise pigs.

Torso: Farmers, believe me, do not do anything they do not need to do, i.e. that will not support the farm and their family. Farming's bloody hard work enough, no room for passengers.

Head: The more people ditch bacon, the fewer farmers will raise pigs, the fewer pigs there will be.

So those seven adorable little piglets (unless they are some family's pets, which would be absolutely marvellous as long as they know a pig is for life and not just for Christmas) are actually seven reasons not to ditch bacon.

I am very strongly in favour of animals being more humanely treated. I sign petitions to that effect, if I had spare money I would give to appropriate charities, when I buy meat I look for meat from farms that adhere to standards of animal welfare. And I continue to love pigs and to eat bacon, because whether it's a straw man or a slippery slope or an excluded middle or any other logical buzzword, I do not trust my species to keep animals alive just because some of us think they look nice.

So that's that.