help...

Nov. 26th, 2014 10:20 am
hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
Can anyone interpret this error message from the EPUB validator?

"could not parse tmp_9f528c285543e76fb2aa6c86a5253ee3_KqSZ1G.ch.fixed.fc.tidied.stylehacked.xfixed_split_036.html: duplicate id: Frame1"

It's from the EPUB version of Time Goes By (derived from a Word file), and will prevent it from being sold at iTunes and other retailers. There's nothing apparently wrong with the readability of the file (either EPUB or Word), navigation from the hyperlinked TOC works perfectly in both, and there are no frames (by Word's definition, anyway) in the document. I thought I'd found the problem - Word having inserted some additional brackets similar to those that mark bookmarks when it put portions on the clipboard as I uploaded them to my website - but when I took them out and re-uploaded to Smashwords, I got the same error.

Any help would be appreciated greatly. I may repost after the holiday if I don't get any answers, because some of the American portion of my flist is probably out fighting weather on roads and in airports today. It's snowing here, but we aren't leaving until very early tomorrow morning, so I hope all will go well.

Also, in short, oh hell Ferguson, ow wrenched my back but hope it'll be better soon, and wow, what is POI trying to do to us? That was a painful episode.

And happy birthday, [livejournal.com profile] penwiper26!
hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
1) I almost have a cover! I need to work on balancing the color (or lack thereof; it's all sepia-ish) but I think I should be done today, and then very little is stopping me from getting the book together and uploaded. This time around I'm pretty sure I'll have a different cover for the ebooks than the paperback, because the print cover uses a wraparound background image with another image covering most of it on the front cover, and not enough of the background shows there to be comprehensible alone. So much as I hate to lose the planes-that-look-like-birds, I think the ebooks will just have the broken violin. Will post on the blog when it's done. (I am still not sufficiently talented with image software (using GIMP now) to make it what I want, but IT IS GOOD ENOUGH SO THERE.)

2) TV catch-up: a) Need to stop dozing off during POI, but that's my fault not the show's; I especially loved Root's turn as French Mary Poppins; b) speaking of which, Doctor Who had some spot-on moments during the season finale, and I have decided that it's not worth dwelling on the places I didn't think they quite made their points, because the misses were fairly close (by the way, has anyone written the story where spoiler )?); Castle, WTF? though I suppose you get the "it was only a dream" pass.

3) We will be getting the polar-vortex-whatever during the day today, though at nothing like the power the center of the country has been experiencing. Our local weather gurus have predicted some "mood flakes" tonight, another term for "conversational snow." I have been a little too occupied with cover-building and the like to do as much outdoors as I should have been doing; maybe I'll manage to go pull out the pepper plants today at least.

4) Music recs. First, my son and a friend, together known as Red Wheelbarrow, have a little album out which you can listen to (and pay what you want to download) here, if you should wish to. As Patrick says, it's a bit rough around the edges, but hey, the price is right, and new artists should be supported, and I think they do a splendid job: Helen has a lovely voice and Patrick plays multiple instruments well and I am not prejudiced at all. Album is original music; you can listen to their covers here.

Second, on a more experienced and professional level, a friend sent me the latest of Zoe Mulford's CDs, "Coyote Wings," and I am now interested in getting her others. Excellent songs, very personal and yet universal, great lyrics and themes and thoughtfulness. And, as I figured out soon after glancing at the liner notes, she is the sister of one of Patrick's directors/teachers/now-colleagues at the theatre camp he attended for many years and now works at in summer, and in fact one of the songs, "Acrobats," which you can listen to at the "music" link on her site, was written to celebrate her brother's wedding (to another employee of the same camp as well as of the commedia troupe they both belong to which I think I have referred to here before). So that is cool.

*whines*

Apr. 17th, 2014 09:33 am
hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
I have a stinking cold, and I have to drive to Allentown and back later today, and I've seen the digital proof for Time and Fevers and yes, I am going to have to work on the cover more. (I don't think it's entirely my fault that it's misaligned, but one must meet CreateSpace where they are.) Despite my "must do this NOW" urges, I know it's much better to wait until I'm feeling better and no longer in the "oh fuck it, this'll do, let me go bury myself in Elementary season two" state of mind. But I'm looking at my calendar for the next couple of weeks and weeping. Why did I think bringing out a book in the height of spring was a good plan? Oh, because the MacGuffin is tulips and it was so cute to have people reading it when the tulips were blooming. Well no, not if I have no time for marketing until summer, and most of the people I can guarantee will read it are equally busy right now.

*sigh*

On the other hand, it didn't snow two days ago, so that's good. (It did sleet, and drop below freezing, but I think all the flowering things and the seedling plants survived.)

I will be much happier when my head is not a mass of snot. Really.
hedda62: Harold Finch in his HAT (hat baby)
The ten inches we got a couple of days ago is melting fast, but I had Vienna Teng's "The Last Snowfall" humming sarcastically in my head for a while. Records for March have already been set, and there's a possibility of another storm next week (which may go north of us, and I am sorry for everyone up there; talk about pummeled). I love snow, and it's pretty out there, but really disconcerting, and I want my fingers in the dirt now thank you.

"Person of Interest" has now totally emerged from early season awkwardness and uncertainty of direction, and is headed to what I'm sure will be a bang-up finish to this arc. I thoroughly enjoyed last night's episode, especially the feeling of everyone playing on a team (Reese! Fusco! Shaw, oh Shaw you are awesome), and the delicate steel trap that is Root, and Finch gently and deliberately reaching out to disarm it. Michael Emerson and Amy Acker are so fantastic in their scenes together, and between them they make the Machine completely real and present, not to mention Samaritan. And I love the clockwork perfection of the Machine directing Root through her shenanigans, and how lost she is when cut loose.

Also, filming in the snow ha ha ha. Bet they didn't think it would still seem that close to the present moment when it aired. They all looked really cold.

Speaking of Amy Acker and her awesomeness, I finished "Angel," and overall really liked it, despite some unevenness particularly in the last two seasons (well, season 4 is mostly WTF territory, but there's some decent stuff there too). Having read about what was going on behind the scenes, I can understand the mess and the abrupt wrap-up. Not every show can be "Lost," alas.

We are caught up to current airing on "Hannibal," and although I'm not thrilled with the bloodlust, I'm enjoying the way the story is unfolding, and will keep watching to see where they go with it.

Working away on talks, book formatting, and garden planning: it will all get finished, and I hope not too much else slips through the cracks along the way. Trying to get as much inside work done as I can while waiting for the soil to be workable. Spring will be intense, when it comes.

rad

Mar. 5th, 2014 08:04 am
hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
Ooh, it's been a while. Today is Younger Son's 20th birthday, and we are hosting his girlfriend and her parents for several days starting this evening, so I don't (and haven't had) a lot of time, but wanted to let you all know I wasn't dead. Hi.

a) That was a great episode of Person of Interest last night. In fact, I believe the word you are looking for is "awesome."

b) YS enticed us into starting Hannibal, which I was trying to avoid, because what do I need with another fandom or even just another cunningly-plotted TV show. It kind of makes me want to cook vegetarian. Which coincidentally I have to do a lot of this week, so.

c) Things on the shopping list: chocolate, tofu, lotus root. Our lives grow more interesting daily.

d) Six more inches of snow happened Monday. This can be it as far as I'm concerned.

e) On the weekend we watched "Thor: The Dark World." I fell asleep, predictably. In between appreciating Hiddleston, of course. We did realize that we missed a major opportunity not naming our (big, ginger; small, black) cats Thor and Loki, but I suspect it's been done.

Have to go roast sweet potatoes and clean the kitchen now. Talk amongst yourselves.
hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
[personal profile] yunitsa wanted to know: If you were in charge of the Vorkosigan books, what would the next one be about?

Piotr.

There, that was easy.

But to expand slightly: I would LOVE a tale of Piotr (and Olivia!) during the Cetagandan War, or any time before the action of the current books starts. Or, if we have to go forward chronologically, something about the coming-of-age of the next generation, after Miles's death. I realize this may sound like I hate Miles, and I don't, but I think we've had plenty of him, and I have next to no interest in filling in the gaps in his life. Though of course if Lois wrote that, I would read it. If she wrote the phone book, I would read it. There would be a lot of the letter V.

In other news, I have spent a fair amount of time in recent days writing more of the Ben-as-Henry-Gale story I started some months ago, and am really hoping to finish it soon so that I can start properly panicking over actual real life commitments.

Also, it has been ridiculously cold here, which is not news to many of you. We've had the water trickling in our bathroom sink for three days without stopping, so the pipe won't freeze, which we only do when temperatures are consistently below 15F (it's the north corner of the house). Mornings have been in the low single digits, with below zero wind chill. Today it might actually reach freezing, though, which will be like a heat wave. As xkcd said so brilliantly, this is the old normal.

Also, the cats are behaving like regular old cats who live in the same house now, not exactly playing together, but observing each other playing, and eating side by side, and all that. Lancelot has been doing Speed Personality Transformation, and now looks to possibly be headed for dominant feline status (Hotspurr is just too easygoing to object, I think). First we thought he'd never come downstairs, then we thought he'd never stop hiding when he saw Hotspurr, then we thought he'd had a deprived kittenhood and never learned to play, but now he is collecting ALL THE MICE and hoarding them in the chair that used to be Hotspurr's, and skittering around chasing them. He still doesn't really understand the point of the laser pointer, but he may yet catch on. It's been a long while since we had two cats at once, and - they actually learn from each other! They also (perhaps inadvertently) team up to make fixing dinner very difficult if they haven't had theirs yet. Twice the underfoot I am used to, half of it blending with the black and white rug.
hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
I'm doing a gluten-free diet for a month (just as an experiment, to see if it makes any difference to the chronic blahs) and this has been no problem in the week I've been at it so far, but yesterday it snowed. If this seems a meaningless juxtaposition, I beg to differ. When it snows enough here that everything shuts down and no one goes to work (and hey, it turned out to be 5 inches of very fine powdery stuff, but it could have been more!) we have Snow Tea with the neighbors. Which means baked goods.

So I needed to make something I'd be able to eat. J. had already produced some gluten-free biscotti, made with almond flour, but I didn't have time to hike out and find the five other kinds of non-wheat flour that most gluten-free recipes request (plus xantham gum, omg), so I made the 1-2-3-4 flourless peanut butter cookie recipe (1 cup peanut butter, 1 cup sugar (though I used 2/3 cup), 1 egg, 1 tsp baking soda, mix and plop and bake at 375F for 10 minutes), and then I went online and found Black Bean Brownies. Which, it turns out, are awesome, if you add a little more cocoa powder (heaping 1/3 cup) and coffee (several teaspoons of very strong brewed). They are pretty fudgy, and from the comments it sounds like you can add a teaspoon of baking powder if you prefer a cake-like texture.

Plus one of the neighbors brought gluten-free cupcakes, and I relaxed the diet so I could join in the Beer Part of Tea, and it was all great fun. And now it is apparently 2F outside (I have not ventured out to see how this feels) and a good day to cuddle with cats and get things done.
hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
Still haven't managed to get more than a black blur in photographing Lancelot, but here is the other kitty:



who is now named Hotspurr. He is sociable to the point of being obnoxious, unafraid of new situations, very cuddly, and pretty much fills the Gobi-sized hole in the house - almost literally, being about the same size and weight, though of course of different coloring, less chatty (and in much higher-pitched tones when he is), and perhaps even pushier. His elusive companion is going to be a more subtle presence, I expect, but when he feels comfortable he's happy to be held and petted. He is not comfortable when Hotspurr is anywhere in sight, but I'm sure he'll come around eventually.

There will be a lot of cuddling in the next day or so, since temperatures are supposed to drop to near 0 F. tonight. I can't remember when it was last this cold here - and not too long after they put us into zone 7, oh well, so much for all those tender plants people put in. (And I'm thinking sad thoughts about Older Son's landlord's patio garden in Houston, where it's been in the 20s.) Welcome to climate change, people.

Another posting meme post coming sometime today.

ETA: Well, here we go, this is something. Black cats are hard to photograph.

hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
I've been enjoying - nay, exulting in - Vienna Teng's album "Aims" this week - thanks to [personal profile] raven for pointing it out. (She has a lovely multi-fandom vid to one of the songs. Go watch!) I note that both "The Hymn of Acxiom" and "Goodnight New York" are good POI songs (especially the former, considering the themes of this season ("Someone is gathering every crumb that you drop, these mindless decisions and moments you long forgot: keep them all, let our formulas find your soul…")). Anyway, you can listen to the whole thing here (and read the lyrics here).

I woke up this morning with "Flyweight Love" from the album in my head, which goes with the lightweight fluttering snow we're still having (though it looks to be slowing down, at far less than the five inches predicted). Teng's "The Last Snowfall" (from an earlier album) worked perfectly in the Winter playlist I use for walking in snow (Simon and Garfunkel, Mumford and Sons, Rod Stewart, the Moody Blues, the Staves, etc.). Second snowfall in three days, this one nicely coordinated with Older Son flying home from Texas, though I think the weather should have settled by the evening. I see, looking ahead, that they're predicting more snow for Saturday, which is drive-back-from-Allentown day (I'm not going up this time, so I get to worry about the others - but hopefully it won't amount to much). In any case, it's beautiful outside, that fleeting moment when an inch of pure white snow is clinging to every branch and looks shiny and edible.

Right now playing "A Chanticleer Christmas" which I hope is the right music for creating a PowerPoint about root vegetables...
hedda62: Harold Finch, half in shadow, text: Oh, Mr. Finch (finch)
Things that are pleasing me:

1) Apropos of nothing other than that I'm listening to it a lot, I now have 42 songs in my "Oh, Mr. Finch" playlist, covering the following: albatross, blackbird, blue jay, bluebird, crane, crow, cuckoo, dove, eagle, goose, lark, nightingale, raven, rook, sparrow, vulture, and wren; also chick in the sense of female human; also generic birds and flying; also occasional airplanes. :) I need to add "Green Finch and Linnet Bird" but I keep saying "it's on an LP, I will mp3-convert it" (because I'm not going to buy something I already have, am I now) and then not getting around to it (the process requires that I click a button at the end of every song, which means not straying far and not doing anything too distracting. ("And the bitch of it was, I only had 108 minutes to bury the poor bastard.")).

2) The weather is altogether lovely this week, just what summer should be and what it so seldom is. I can actually take a walk in the afternoon.

3) I did a thing today on Tumblr that people liked. I'm not sure what else I will do there (quote of the day, maybe?) but it is certainly an entertaining place and I must stop myself from refreshing the page all the time, dammit.

4) I had a POI story idea that might work and have started writing it down. Also must work on Vorkosiverse promptfic that I know the beginning of but little else. Also yes I know the book; I'm giving myself another week to make decisions.

5) I am really enjoying "Orphan Black" and, in small doses, "Welcome to Night Vale."

6) Also I continue to be very appreciative of the existence of Michael Emerson. (And colleagues.)

I think that's enough to be going on with.

Oh, ha

May. 15th, 2013 07:30 am
hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
(Totally happy to do more commentaries, by the way.)

Trying to write a supper interlude in my current WIP, I thought about the evidence that Harold reads Asimov, and went to look up Multivac stories, and found All the Troubles of the World (Wikipedia summary; full text PDF is available for the searching), in which the Machine a crime-predicting Multivac plots against itself. I had totally forgotten about this. But I wonder if they're going there, eventually.

Clearly, too, if I was going to quote "The Waste Land," I should have considered the exchange with the Sibyl. "I want to die." Holy hell. What if this is why the Machine is cultivating Root? *head explodes*

In other news, after almost having a frost Monday night, we may finally be settling into a predictable period of warmth, though I wouldn't count out anything at this point. *shoots climate change in the kneecaps* *goes off to unwrap tomato plants*
hedda62: my cat asleep (Default)
But I just have to say, best storm nickname ever. We're hoping for a foot, but it might be five inches.

I must, naturally, do a lot of baking and such today (it's like bells and salivation, people), but maybe I can get a few more words down on the story (I had John Reese naked in a bathtub turning into a snake; really I can't leave him there). Speaking of naked men in water, "Metamorphoses" was awesome last night, including a chat with the actors afterwards (mostly answering questions about how the heck you do a play with a big wading pool in the middle of it); it wasn't even raining when we left, so no water metaphors there, but the U.S. Naval Academy was in attendance, which I thought was just perfect.

Okay, I need to go upload some photos of lotus root and Chinese yam, and fill up containers with water in case the power goes out (it's heavy, gloppy March snow). Later!

ETA: basically nothing stuck. Another major disappointment, snow gods.

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