Portal free for the taking!

Not being plugged into the gaming world, I found out about this by accident, from listening to guild chat last night.

Oh, and no, I’m not part of the gaming world.

I’m part of the WoW world.

I don’t have any real gaming anything on my links or feedreaders or whatever. I used to follow the various gaming sites and have subscriptions to gaming magazines (owning multiple platforms, my favorite was Game Informer from EB Games), but years ago I accepted that I am no longer a person that buys games all the time, no matter HOW many platforms we have;

I just play WoW.

I think it’s because I’m a man on a budget, and as long as I’m going to be paying a monthly fee for a game, I find it ever harder to justify spending more money on them, as long as I’m happy with this one.

There’s nothing quite like having a sensible, responsible fiscal plan and basic math skills for ruining the fun of blowing thousands of $$$ on new video games that last 5 hours each to play.

Why look! A new game costs $50, it lasts 4 to 8 hours, and then it’s off to find another one. So, 3 to 4 games a month, times 12 months, times however many average dollars, equals ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR FREAKING MIND?!?!

So. Do your part to be a fiscal conservative, and play WoW.

Even in my cocooned little word, I heard about Portal.

When it was released, Portal almost instantly captured the snarky segment of the gaming world, and plaintive cries of “The cake is a lie!” began to ring throughout Azeroth.

Baron Soosdon even rocked my world with a machinama mixing WoW and Portal, called “The Device Has Been Modified”, making me really, really want to play this whole “Portal” thingie.

But, like, dude… the game costs $20.

$20!

So, I didn’t buy it. Thought about it off and on, but never got it.

Are you like me? Did you always want to try Portal and see what all the fuss was about, but didn’t have the cash to satisfy your curiosity?

Grats! Level up!

It’s now free!

For a limited time….

Here’s the deal. Until May 24th, Portal is free for the taking through the Steam game download and purchasing system.

The only string is, in order to get it, you have to either have a Steam account, or create one and then use Steam to get Portal.

The link is here. <=========== Right there. Come on, click it!!

Seriously. That’s it. Create a Steam account, install Steam (which takes seconds), get your Portal, download it and start playing.

I did it this morning, and I’m darn near done with the first 19 levels. I burned through them in a frenzy of “This game ROCKS!” jubilation.

 I now know where such phrases as “The cake is a lie” come from, and I am richer for the experience.

Damn, it is a good game. Brilliant, AND snarky! My favorite combination!

It is a first person shooter… without the shooting part. No, really, it’s freaking brilliant. Well, okay, there is SOME shooting. But you don’t do it. And saying more is a spoiler. So, darn.

I am disappointed that stacking four broken camera heads on a button switch doesn’t provide the weight to trigger it. I spent five minutes balancing those cameras, damn it.

You know those games that say “We encourage you to find alternate ways of winning without just hacking and slashing?”

That is what Portal is all about.

So what are you waiting for? Another Heroic?

Try something new for an afternoon. Go ahead, you can do eeeeet!

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Massive book recommendations!

I’ve tried to touch on different things here over the years, sticking with things that I love as a proud geek fanboy. 

Just like a ferret, I’m not consistent. I bounce all over the place. Ooh, shiny!

I’ll talk about WoW for a month, and then out of nowhere you get a post about John Ringo books, or World War II heist movies, or Top Chef.

This pays off for me, because invariably you folks offer suggestions for things I’D like that you enjoyed, and boom, my music collection explodes with awesomeness, or I hear about a new old movie I end up loving, or like the other day, I take the plunge and buy Jim* Butcher’s first Dresden book, Storm Front, and really like it.

I have gushed about John Ringo before, and I also wrote a post about some of the older books and series I really, really loved a long time ago.

That’s not really very complete. Not when reading is something I have done all my life, and when writing and fiction are among my greatest passions.

I was emailed by Averna a few days ago, asking if there were any other series I would recommend for someone looking for something to read.

Ahem.

I might have a few series of books I could suggest.

What I’m going to do is list the series that retain a permanent place on my bookshelf, regardless of genre.

Each and every one of the following series is a collection of books that I enjoyed so much that I went out and bought all of them, keep all of them on my shelf no matter how little space I have, and will forever retain no matter how many times I do a purge to clear out the stuff I know I’ll never read again.

In many cases, especially on out of print series, I’ve spent many an hour driving around looking in used bookstores or online or by phone for that scarce copy of Sten #4, or something.

Most of my searching was done before there was such a thing as an internet, when finding that one damn book meant networking with eclectic booksellers across the country for weeks, so all you youngsters that can click a button and find that rare book in three seconds? Yeah, you can kiss my butt.

Again, these are the series that I directly support by “voting with my wallet”, by buying new books when they come out with actual cash, and suggest and keep because I love them, in some way.

Many of them I don’t love in all ways, but there will be something that is amazing.

For example, the World as Myth series by Robert Heinlein, some people are turned off by his writing because of the interpersonal relationship issues within the stories, but for me, the concept and way he explores the heart of the subject, worlds of imagination existing as reality somewhere, is just flat out brilliant.

Since 95% of my reading comes for free from the public library system whenever I want, spending money on books, for me, is one hell of a luxury purchase and I have to really want that series to be sitting on my shelves to make it happen.

The great thing about doing this, is that even if you don’t see anything that might be interesting, you get to mock some of my choices,  agree with some others, or suggest your own. Score!

Science Fiction (general)
Space Cops – Three book series by Diane Duane and Peter Morwood
The ‘World as Myth’ books by Robert A. Heinlein
  Time Enough for Love
  The Number of the Beast
  The Cat Who Walks Through Walls
  To Sail Beyond the Sunset  
The Continuing Time by Daniel Keys Moran

Science Fiction (Military)
Posleen War/Legacy of the Aldenata by John Ringo
Sten series by Chris Bunch and Allan Cole
Northworld, RCN and Hammer’s Slammers series by David Drake
TimeWar series by Simon Hawke
Legion of the Damned series by William C. Dietz
Honor Harrington and Dahak series by David Weber
Empire of Man series by David Weber and John Ringo
Robotech novels/book series attributed to Jack McKinney

Detective/Mystery
Prey series and Kidd series by John Sandford
Matthew Scudder novels by Lawrence Block
Jack Reacher series by Lee Child
Harry Bosch series by Michael Connelly

Fantasy
Anything in the universe by Terry Pratchet
Dragonriders of Pern and especially the Dragonsong series by Anne McCaffrey
The Chronicles of Amber by Roger Zelazny
The Vlad Taltos series, and the Khaavren romances by Steven Brust
The Deryni series by Katherine Kurtz
The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan
The Legion of Videssos series by Harry Turtledove
Doc Sidhe series by Aaron Allston
Lord of the Isles series by David Drake
War God series by David Weber

Honorable fantasy mention;
They’re not a series, but each is freaking brilliant; Talion: Revenant, Eyes of Silver, and Once a Hero by Michael A. Stackpole.
Personally, I don’t enjoy a lot of his other books or series, but I thought Talion in particular was one of the finest works of fantasy fiction I have ever read in my life. Oh, and his Star Wars books also kick ass. A LOT of it. Rogue Squadron? Pretty win.

Military (general)
Rogue Warrior series by Dick Marcinko
Able Team series attributed to Dick Stivers

Adventure
Dirk Pitt books, particularly the earliest ones, by Clive Cussler

Series I once had all of (or almost all of) back in the day, and wish I still did, but I don’t want them quite enough to spend thousands of dollars rebuilding them;
Casca: The Eternal Mercenary series by Barry Sadler
The Destroyer (Remo Williams and Chium) series by Warren Murphy and Richard Sapir
Doc Savage by Kenneth Robeson

EDIT
Damn it, I knew I was going to forget to include this one, I was driving around thinking to myself, “Gotta remember that series, don’t forget”, and sure enough, I hit publish? Forgot.
I heartily recommend for pure fun the Bureau 13 books by Nick Pollotta.If you have ever been a GM of any crazy fun role playing game, I dare you to read the first book, Judgment Night, and not kill yourself laughing. I shared these with Manny, and I thought he was gonna kill me. Seriously. At least try the first one. They are amazing.

EDIT 2

The list above came from my head while I was at work… so it’s not only the permanent ones, but also the ones that came readily to mind.

Now that I’m home, I look at my shelves and see that I had let slip from my mind a few other series, and so let’s bring in the sad and forgotten, but still cherished loves;

Suspense:
Jack Higgens’ series of Sean Dillon counterintel novels
Stephen Hunter’s multiple interwoven series of awesome sniper/counter sniper books spanning generations

Fantasy:
Robert Asprin’s Fool’s Company and Myth Adventures series
Raymond Feists’ Riftwar series
The Sword Dancer series by Jennifer Roberson
The Riddle Master series by Patricia A. McKillip
The Gandalara Cycle by Randal Garrett and Viki Ann Heydron
The Darwath Trilogy by Barbara Hambly

Science Fiction:
The StarWolves series by Thorarinn Gunnarsson

Funny how an entire series of books and stories can just fade from memory, only to rush in at once when you see them on the shelves.

How about that Profession stuff, huh?

All I’ve wanted to do since Monday was write more on the next chapter of my story.

That being the case, there hasn’t been any blog writing to speak of… but there hasn’t been but three paragraphs on the story. Work is craaaaaazy.

But there has been WoW news, so let’s just have fun talking about WoW for a second!

Reposted from MMO Champion;

While the Cataclysm updates to many of the professions are still deep in development, we wanted to share some of the work that’s been going on, as well as a high-level look at any lessons learned or changes to their underlying philosophies during the design process. Please be aware that not all professions have the same extent of information available right now, but each is receiving the same love and attention as the next.

Take heed of these teasers as you look forward to your new rank of Illustrious Grand Master!

Please enjoy!

General

•Perks will continue to exist across all professions, and will upgraded appropriately.
Blacksmithing, Leatherworking, and Tailoring

•Many of the green (and possibly some blue) items made during the process of leveling these professions will contain random stats. In most examples, two stats on these items will be set, and two will be random. The idea with these items is to mix up the skill leveling items so you’re not just, for example, creating 10 pairs of boots that are all exactly the same.
•Superior-quality items that require more materials than other recipes in the same skill range provide multiple skill-ups. For example, if a recipe takes three times the reagents, it will give you three skill-ups.
•We didn’t feel like we were getting much flexibility from specializations, so they have been removed for all three of these professions. The intent was to help people diversify their profession to feel different from that of other players, but through other professions we’ve found systems that work better to this end, such as simply making recipes available that you can earn over time.
•To follow up the previous change, all items that required a specialization are now useable by anyone.
•Tailoring the high-end Cataclysm items will center around a single cloth type that can be crafted through five different recipes — each with their own material components and a long cooldown.
•All three professions will create their starter sets of PVP gear, which will be upgraded with new recipes every season. In general, these are meant to keep pace as an entry-level PvP set below whatever the current Hero Point set is.
Alchemy

•New elixirs will be about 75% as strong as flasks. So you can get more total stat points with two elixirs, but flasks will still be the best at giving you a single offensive or defensive stat.
•New unique material used by nearly all high-level recipes will be created by alchemists on a one-day cooldown.
•New Mysterious Potion created with common materials restores health and mana in a massively random range, as well as sometimes granting the benefit of another potion. The health and mana range is from 1-20,000 and is able to crit. The minimum amount restored, however, is scaled upwards by the Alchemy skill, making it a great choice for alchemists to keep for themselves.
•All potions and elixirs now use the same basic vial type. Flasks still use a fancy vial.
•New Alchemist Stone.
Enchanting

•In general, material component costs for most recipes are more moderate in how much they require, while the highest-end recipes will still require large quantities. The goal of this change is to make the leveling recipes more consistent and not create unintended roadblocks in getting to the higher skill levels.
•An enchanter vanity pet is being added.
New Cataclysm weapon enchantment preview:

•Avalanche — Chance to deal Nature damage on melee hit/spell hit.
•Elemental Slayer — As expected, this enchantment helps players deal devastating damage to elemental creatures.
•Hurricane — A stacking haste proc.
•Heartsong — Mana regeneration through increased Spirit when chain-casting spells.
•Many more maximum-level enchantments are still in progress.
Engineering

•Engineering is still being designed, but expect new unpredictable gadgets to use on yourself or enemies. Toys, explosives, and even a new vanity pet or two. Oh, and powerful mechanical bows and crossbows in addition to guns.
•In general, we want Engineering to remain a tradeskill mainly focused on creating fun or useful gadgets for the engineer, but we are exploring options for items that can be sold to other players for profit.
Inscription

•With the large number of class changes coming with Cataclysm, many existing glyphs will see new functionality.
•Minor glyphs are woefully uneven from one class to the next right now, so they’re a focus for us to clean them up and try to ensure that everyone has minor glyphs they’re excited about.
•New Darkmoon Cards will be added, with hopes they’ll all be as awesome as the Greatness card.
•We’ll be adding more major glyphs as well, but in the hopes of making them as balanced as possible, we’ll likely wait until after the expansion ships to add any for the new abilities in Cataclysm.
•New and more desirable off-hand and relic recipes will be added.
Jewelcrafting

•Some gem colors have changed! Hit is now blue. Mastery and Dodge are yellow. Intellect is now red. These simple changes have created a much more diverse matrix of gem cuts.
•New Jewelcrafting dailies will be introduced.
•Many cuts are being added to support the new Mastery stat.
•Some new Cataclysm jewelry recipes have completely random properties, and can sometimes create superior and epic versions.
•Jewelcrafters will have some fun new (and potentially lucrative) vanity items, including fist weapons, rhinestone sunglasses, monocles, and stardust (sprinkle on players for entertainment).
Herbalism, Skinning, and Mining

•All Cataclysm herbs have the chance of containing Volatile Life.
•There won’t be a new Lotus equivalent in Cataclysm. Alchemists will use the more reliably-found Volatile Life to create the new high level flasks.
Herb Example:

•”Heartblossom — Named for its deep red color, this delicate flower grows close to the ground, and always in pairs. If one blossom is taken, the other flower begins to wilt immediately and dies soon after. It is considered very unlucky to disturb a Heartblossom without blessing it first.”
•Savage Leather, the basic Cataclysm leather, can be gathered from most creatures found in the expansion areas and can be converted to Heavy Savage Leather at a 6:1 rate.
•Pristine Hide, the rare Cataclysm hide, can be found when skinning creatures in the expansion areas, or be converted from Heavy Savage Leather.
•Obsidian is the new common mineral found when mining in Cataclysm, and can contain gems, Volatile Fire, and Volatile Shadow.
•Elementium is the new uncommon mineral found when mining in Cataclysm, and can contain gems, Volatile Fire, Volatile Water, or Volatile Earth.
•Pyrite is the new rare mineral found when mining in Cataclysm, and can contain gems and Volatile Fire.
•Previous Elementium Ore and Bar used for classic quests will be renamed to Elementium Ingot and Hardened Elementium Bar.
•We like the gathering perks as they are; not a game-changing bonus but something themed and fun. But as all tradeskills are in the design stages these are still being discussed to a degree.
Cooking

•Cooking is still in the early stages, but we plan on continuing with daily quests, feasts, and some fun new recipes.
•We liked the cooking dailies that had players picking up items that spawned in the world near the quest giver, so most if not all new cooking dailies will work similarly.
First Aid

•Bandages will have a short cast time and put a heal over time effect on the target for 8 seconds. This effect is broken by damage.
•Three new bandages! That’s right: THREE!

Bandage preview:

•”Dense Embersilk Bandage” Heals for 34,800 over 8 seconds. Requires 3 Embersilk to create.
Fishing

•Lots of new fish and other fun items to catch! Fish are still used to make premium food.
•New fishing dailies.

Yeah, I know, everybody already saw all that.

I’d just like to take a moment to say;

Yay to Engineering making bows and crossbows, this makes me very happy.

Yay to Armor crafters getting more than just the one level of starter PvP gear they’ll be able to make. Adding new PvP gear recipes to keep up with one level below PvP progression is really an outstanding idea to keep those professions relevant and desirable.

Yay to Jewelcrafters getting new vanity items… and are they serious about new fist weapons?

Yay to Inscription getting more Darkmoon Cards… and possibly more useful off hand items? I used that Book as a healer off hand for a long time.

But, well, biggest yay goes to MORE non-combat pets!

What do you folks think of the direction for professions? Sounds like the mat usage will be made simpler, and the professions themselves will make things that are both fun, and more useful over the long run. Almost as though they were trying to build on the things that people liked, and correct or eliminate areas people didn’t.

They better be careful, with a design philosophy like that they may be going places. 

A single booo goes to no announcement on Enchanting making epic level/max level Wands. Grrr.

John Ringo finally brings the payoff

I’ve made no secret of the fact that I’m a big fan of the military sci-fi writings of John Ringo.

I like his books. He writes some great fast-paced military sci-fi, with a great sense of humor, AND is rare among similar writers by including geek-culture references everywhere.

Tell me, how many other military sci-fi writers do you know that would have continuous in-jokes from the webcomic Sluggy Freelance? Or write an entire section of a book (not in this series) poking fun at other well known sci-fi writers based at a convention?

I love serious military sci-fi, I really, really do. Some of my favorites are David Drake, David Weber and William C. Dietz.

John Ringo brings his own special touch to the genre, though. It’s good military sci-fi with a, well, he doesn’t take himself very seriously. Love him or hate him, he’s got a sense of humor and it comes through.

What John Ringo hasn’t brung in years is a serious payoff in the Posleen War saga.

I’ve been following his Posleen War saga for a long damn time now. Eleven books to date over ten years, each one a big read with lots of great stuff. The entire thing is more serious in overall tone than most of his other works. It’s nothing less than the absolute invasion and dominance of Earth by alien invaders, and the centuries long struggle for humanity to survive and fight back. Still touches of the Ringo humor, but very gritty.

I read ’em, I love ’em, but it’s been a struggle.

Why a struggle?

Eleven books, and the first ten built up more teasers, glimpses and plot hooks that I thought possible outside of The Wheel of Time. John Ringo created, developed and grew great main characters, then took them in different directions, never to meet again.

Time after time… everything kept spreading out. Just like the real universe, the story kept expanding, leaving all these damn things hanging there, unresolved for the reader.

I love the books, but I’ve been feeling battle fatigue. When the hell was he finally going to wrap some of these things up, PARTICULARLY the personal relationships, and everyone getting focused on hunting down and killing the true evil scheming manipulative bastards in the story?

Seriously. It’s been ten books of everyone killing alligators across the galaxy, but nobody really getting to grips with draining the damn swamp!

They’re great books, but after ten in the series, I was ready for some resolution.

I picked up the latest book, numero eleven, wondering what fresh hell this would bring, and finally… FINALLY it’s all coming together.

Not just one or two things getting resolved, either. I’m halfway through Eye of the Storm, and he’s already nailed down and brought to fruition the plot hooks left dangling from damn near all ten previous books. All of it.

We’re doing nothing but going forward now, and I for one am nothing but happy for it.

I know it’s silly, but after a while of reading any series, much like watching a TV series, no matter how good it is, I want some things to wrap up, I want things to change, I want the entire story to move forward.

I don’t want Star Trek, I want Babylon 5. I want growth, change, and a journey. And, eventually, I’d like to see a destination get reached.

There it is.

Now that there is finally a book that wraps some of the deepest emotional issues up and advances the story in cool new directions, I’m once again delighted with it. I feel like I held in there, and now I’m being rewarded.

Here’s hoping the books continue to deliver, ’cause so far, they’ve really kicked butt. And just knowing that, yes Virginia, there is an eventual payoff, makes the whole thing better.

If you’re looking for a new (old) military sci-fi series to get into, I invite you to check these out.

Posleen War by John Ringo
1. A Hymn Before Battle (main story 1: war)
2. Gust Front (main story 1: war)
3. When the Devil Dances (main story 1: war)
4. Hell’s Faire (main story 1: war)
5. The Hero (side story elsewhere in same universe) (with Michael Z Williamson)
6. Cally’s War (main story 2: black ops)(with Julie Cochrane)
7. Watch on the Rhine (side story set in Europe during main war storyline)(with Tom Kratman)
8. Yellow Eyes (side story set in Panama during main war storyline)(with Tom Kratman)
9. Sister Time  (main story 2: black ops)(with Julie Cochrane)
10. Honor of the Clan (main story 1 and 2 brought together)(with Julie Cochrane)
11. Eye of the Storm (The payoff! Brings together all stories from 1, 2, plus characters from Europe and Panama)

Aaaaannnnd… we were hacked again!

Yep, it was hacked again.

Good morning! That sinking feeling? That’s my enthusiasm levels as I wonder just how long any of my friends are going to be willing to visit the blog, if there is going to be this risk of malware infection on their computer.

And what about the hundreds of other blogs out there getting hacked? I’m comfortable having this small space with my friends and doing my thing, I really don’t look for growth or expansion or moar readers. But for a lot of bloggers, writers that might be just starting out, or would really like to grow their site readership, or are trying to start a business venture doing what they love, holy crap!

For folks in that situation, you want people searching Google and Yahoo and other search engines to be able to find you, right?

Well, Google and other searching sites regularly check for sites infected with malware, and will blacklist them from their search engine results if they get nailed. Sometimes very fast, indeed. Do they then take them off the blacklist once the site is fixed? Well, what do you think?

It’s a lot easier to trust someone when they can say “I’ve never had my site hacked”, than someone who says “I’ll never have my site hacked again. Honest.”

Thanks to Cassie being on top of things, within minutes of my trying to login and finding the site hacked, Cassie fixed it. Hell, not minutes, seconds.

The best resource Cassie found on this last week continues to be the best. That would be the security geniuses at Sucuri Security who are I swear to all that bloggers hold holy the best blogging security people in the universe.

I’m basing this on them updating status reports, providing knowledge on the actions within the community, researching the root causes, contacting website hosting providers for updates, and providing solutions that work!

I’m thinking about hiring their service for auditing the site continuously, to be honest.

So, once again, the site was back in the hands of the malware redirectors. Cassie took it right back, but this is really getting irritating.

We know it’s not personal. Nobody singled BBB out to take down. It’s part of a mass impersonal hack attack. And this one seems directly targeted at GoDaddy hosted .php based sites, not just WordPress installations.

But damn, people. What a great start to the day, right?

I want to be very clear here. I am deeply, deeply sorry to all of you that visit this website, if the malware that has been on it in the past has caused any of you any inconvenience whatsoever.

I hate this shit. I’m sorry.

Don’t blink or you’ll miss it

I honestly can’t believe how quickly time passes.

Ttwo things.

I’m stunned by how fast time moves when you’re busy, and I’m also shocked at how easy it is to slip into a pattern.

Specifically, after I posted the last chapter of Jessie’s story arc in Converging Forces, I knew that the story focus was going to be shifting to Baron Trendel for a while.

I’m learning about story cliffhangers.

Jessie was at a point in her story where it was clearly going to take a lot of writing to establish where she was after her internal meltdown, what some of the potential consequences were, and what was going to begin happening next. With Baron Trendel having sat for so long in the story, it seemed to me that it was a good spot to make a break from one to the other, and gain some emotional seperation. To shift the intensity of the story away from immediate emotional despair or grief and into a more measured, determined searching. 

Jessie’s story had been a very intense time of writing for me. I found myself really getting caught up as I wrote it, and while I have no idea what it reads like in someone else’s head, it shook me up a bit. I think that’s great, hopefully some of that actually made it out of my head and onto the page, but it’s impossible to know what someone else will get out of writing like that.

But okay, Jessie had her time in the sun and went out with a bang that Manny should have seen coming, and will have interesting consequences in her immediate future. Now it was time for Baron Trendel to show why he is an important part of the story, and to bring an emotional balance in with a little fun on the side. 

I’ve had things bouncing around in my noggin about both story arcs and where they fit together, and I sat down to refresh myself on where exactly we left off before I began the next chapter.

Looking at the time stamp, OMG, it’s been four and a half months since I posted the last chapter of the story.

It feels like three weeks, tops. It’s crazy.

At this rate, the damn story is going to be done when I’m in a nursing home!

It’s shocking. I write on the blog almost daily, so it’s not that I’m not writing. It’s just that I wake up, there’d be something about the game going on I was inspired to write about that’d be a quickie, and then after writing something I’d be done for the day, time to move on.

Oh, but I’ll write a story chapter the next day.

But the next day there is something else small to write about, so how about the day after that. No worries, it’s only been a week. Or two.

Four and a half months.

I don’t know what to tell you, obviously my writing isn’t a full time job, or even a paid gig, it’s for fun. It’s not like I’m blowing deadlines.

This irritates me because I find the story writing to be more personally rewarding, long term.

I enjoy writing on the blog very much, I love our ongoing conversations and the talk about WoW. There’s a reason I keep writing here all the time. 

It’s just jarring to look back and see that I’ve spent four and a half months writing regularly, day in and day out, but I’ve advanced the story that I feel is the best part of my writing not a line nor word.

I can look back over the years of the blog, and I can say to myself, “Boy, 1139 posts, over 20,000 comments, ain’t that something. That’s a lot of writing, right there, yesiree Billy Joe Bob, ayuh. Dadgum. We’ve had ourselves a lot of fun along the way.”

I can’t go back over 1140 posts and reread them for fun or idle amusement, though. I can’t point other people to it as something to read for a quick laugh, or to check out a story that might be worth checking out. 1139 posts is a ridiculous number.

I’m sure there are individual posts that would be fun to read again, or that I could point to as being interesting. I had some linked on the sidebar for a while as “classic BBB”, and I still keep the “Storytime” ones linked there so it’s easy for me to find them without digging around.

But the regular posts aren’t, well, a consistent story that holds together as anything other than daily fishwrap.

They’re words written for the moment, about a briefly relevant topic, and then quickly forgotten by all.

The Converging Forces writing, however, is something that I could someday wrap up with a ribbon and give to my son to read, if he was so inclined. Something I could share as a story that should be rewarding to read, in and of itself, for anyone that likes a solid story, and not just for those of us interested in WoW.

As inept as it may be, the work of an amateur writer, the Converging Forces story is something that I’ll keep and take with me and cherish over the years, no matter where my other interests may fall.

In that context, I feel very wistful about the last four and a half months. Each day represents potential writing that I’ll never get back again. 

A week or two is fine, but taken all at once like that, wow. Blink and it’s gone.