Éric’s 2020 Resolutions Mid-Year Review

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

Well… Oh Boy… nearly half way through 2020… It’s been quite a year for the world.

So let’s see how I’m doing with my resolutions for 2020.

https://www.comicskingdom.com/Macanudo/

Writing

1. Finish Writing The Dancing Lights (Failing)

I’m still about a third of the way through… It’s been hard to write this year. I’m still hoping to having to beta readers by September or October but…

2. Finish Writing Paragenesis (No Movement)

If I’m lucky enough to finish Dancing Lights by October I’ll try and finish this one. It’s so close I can taste it.

3. Write a Monthly Serial Story (Succeeding)

So far so good. This reminds me; I better go get on that, eh?

Read this year’s serial story

JenEric Designs and Coffee

4. Ensure there’s content 5 days a week on JenEric Designs (Succeeding)

There was a major change in this year’s lineup but we’re doing well. Hopefully we have enough TARDIS pictures to last until we can get more.

5. Design and Produce 2 new coffee flavours (Succeeding)

We released Crowley’s Temptation and I think we’re going to maybe release something in the Fall, but I’m not sure.

6. Print, Package, and Sell Oneshot – The Simplest RPG (No Movement)

I’m probably going to push this one back. I wanted something for Ottawa Comic Con but I doubt that’s happening and I’m not comfortable investing the time or money into this for this year.

Editing and Marketing

7. Finish Playtesting the higher levels of Fadds (Succeeding )

We finished a high level campaign and I’m pretty happy with how it went. It needs a little more work but we’ll get there. I’m going to continue to beta-test various parts, but for now I’m not rushing anything.

8. Figure out how to market my books better (No Movement)

This is a great goal and a great idea… I put my books up on our coffee site and sold a few but I don’t think I’m going to spend much energy on this one this year.

Personal

9. Read 20 books (Failing)

I’m at 4 of twenty and I’m reading slowly. Between Pegasus waking a lot, pandemic stress, and no bus to work I’ve found it hard to find time to read.

10. Don’t Burnout (Succeeding)

I’ll be honest, I constantly feel on the brink of a breakdown. I’m trying really hard to not let that happen. 2020 isn’t an easy time for this resolution.

11. Be More Patient (Trying)

My daughter is in a licking/biting phase (again) and my son is trying really hard to learn how to talk which means he just screams like a horror movie vixen. It’s hard to keep my cool, but other than a few times I’ve used “Angry Dad” voice instead of “Losing Control and Likely to punch a wall” voice so I’ll say that’s a win.

12. Play Some Video games with Dragon (Succeeding)

We’ve played a few times and she’s really improving. Hopefully we’ll do more soon.

13. Play Some Board Games with Dragon (Succeeding)

We’ve had 2 board game nights so far and they went well. She’s not grasping the strategy of the games, but she is getting the mechanics which is good. Our current favourite is The Mysterious Forest. It’s a co-op memory game with a little resource management. She mostly loves being in charge of the stuff.


That’s not as bad as I expected. So far I’m succeeding at 7, Trying with 1, No Movement on 3, and outright Failing on 2. I expected much worse.

I’m not adding or changing anything this year. Who knows what 2020 still has in store for us. Hopefully I can continue at this pace.

Stay Safe, Wash your hands, and be kind,

Éric

Éric’s 2020 New Years Resolutions

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

2019 was a big year for me and my family. Our son was born, both me and my wife were nominated for Aurora Awards, Everdome was released, and many other great things happened.

It’s hard to live up to or plan after such a good year, but I have to, so here are my resolutions.

Garfield from December 29th, 2017

Writing

1. Finish Writing The Dancing Lights

I’m a third of the way through the book and I really need to finish it and submit it this year if I want a chance at a 2022 slot for the book.

2. Finish Writing Paragenesis

I’m mid way through Chapter 11 of 15 and that means I have less than 15000 words to finish the story. I’d like to get this one done and sent to betas.

3. Write a Monthly Serial Story

I’ve managed it every year I’ve tried and it’s something I really enjoy doing.

Go vote on what I’ll write this year.

JenEric Designs and Coffee

4. Ensure there’s content 5 days a week on JenEric Designs

We’ve missed this once in six years and I don’t want to miss it again.

5. Design and Produce 2 new coffee flavours

I have already tested and have 4-6 flavours ready. I just need names and designs.

6. Print, Package, and Sell Oneshot – The Simplest RPG

I just need to figure out how to put it all together and sell it.

Editing and Marketing

7. Finish Playtesting the higher levels of Fadds

I’ve done a lot of work on this system over the past 10 years and it’s close to done I need to playtest the higher levels and then I can start some cleanup of the wording and other basic editing.

8. Figure out how to market my books better

Renaissance Press is a fantastic publisher but, as with any other publisher, a lot of work still needs to be done by the author. I need to figure out how to get my books into the hands of people who will enjoy them.

Personal

9. Read 20 books

Last year I barely made this goal so I’m hoping I can surpass it this time.

10. Don’t Burnout

Two years ago I burned-out pretty bad. I was just doing too much. After being on parental leave for 9 months, going back to work is going to be hard. I have to be careful not to fall into over-doing it again.

11. Be More Patient 

I love my family, kids, and friends but sometimes I just want to scream at them… unfortunately I sometimes do.

I’m working on it. Let’s hope I can continue to improve.

12. Play Some Video games with Dragon

I really enjoy playing with her and I think she does too. It’s a great stress relief.

13. Play Some Board Games with Dragon

She’s still young, but I think she can figure out some of the simpler games we have. We’ll try it out and see.

Hopefully I can succeed and survive this year.

Good 2020 to everyone!

Éric

Not So Imaginary

Hello my Imaginary Friends,

Today will be a quick post. I have finished beta-reading and received Parasomnia from my first Beta-Reader. So I’m anxious to get back to editing. I like this part of editing it’s faster and easier for me. Instead of trying to find the problems, it’s trying to fix them. Way simpler.

Not So Imaginary

Did you know that this blog is under a year old? The two blogs that combined to form JenEric Designs are older. Aspiring Something is just under 7 years old and The Travelling TARDIS is just over 3 and a half years old.

In all that time, I’ve always assumed that I was “Yelling into the void” as it were. I didn’t think, other than family and close friends, that anyone was reading. I was wrong. There was at least one person who’s been following both of us for at least six years and they came to introduce themselves at CON a few weeks back.

The person, whom I’ll call C, was really nice and friendly. It was both exciting and surprising to know that someone has read this blog that I hadn’t met. So thanks for reading and following C!

If you’ve been following I’ve been obsessively researching and roasting my own coffee. I’ve sold at Pop-Expo and at CON. My Test Subjects Friends have said they enjoy it, and I’ve loved it. I’ve sold several flavours and lots of bags.

Again I assumed only friends and family were paying attention. Again I was wrong (It happens a lot. I’m ok with it.) this weekend we got an email from someone who’s significant other had bought coffee at Pop-Expo and they wanted to get them a few bags for their upcoming birthday since the SO had enjoyed the coffee. It made me really happy.

Happy

I know one fan of the blogs and one fan of the coffee doesn’t mean we’re suddenly huge. It’s not a viral post, or a publishing contract. But it is a sign that we’re doing something right and getting ourselves out there.

Between that and editing two books that I think are good enough to publish, I feel like a lot of hard work is starting to show progress. It makes me hopeful and after last month, I really needed that.

 

Thank you my not so imaginary friends!

 

Éric

This Guy Sat Down to write a Deep Philosophical Post. What Happened Next was Shocking!

Hello,

I’m feeling Clickbait-y today. (Insert Evil Laugh here.) That makes me think I should record my own evil laugh for these moments…

I wanted to talk about voting, harassment, or the horrible things happening with #GamerGate. But to be completely honest I don’t think I can add anything to the discussion. Here are my basic opinions:

  • Voting Good, Vote gorram you!
  • Harassment is BAD. Stop it!
  • No seriously, STOP IT! There is never any reason to threaten someone’s life. Never

So since I’m not feeling up to being deep, here’s a basic update.

Coffee

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You may know that I love coffee. It’s something that I’ve gone from appreciating to truly enjoying.

If you follow me on Facebook,(or read my post about Can-Con) you might know that I’m trying to create my own flavoured coffee.

So far it’s worked swimmingly. I purchased a $15 hot air popcorn popper and experimented with how long and how much to roast in it. It worked amazingly. The coffee came out as a Full City+ or Medium-Well roast. It’s the perfect roast, in my mind, since it’s mellow and a little sweet.

I used Sumatra mostly and really like the flavour or the roasted beans.

Talking about flavours, I bought some flavour oils and flavoured the beans at different times in their cooling. I’ve tasted of the 5 batches. The 2 day cooled and the 1 hour cooled. Unfortunately despite smelling like the flavours, the taste didn’t penetrate the bean (sounds dirty.)

I’ve set up 3 others at ½ hour, 10 minutes, and right out of the machine. My worry is that I might need to combine the flavouring with some sort of bonding agent that will force it into the bean. Frankly I have no idea how to do that.

Oh well. I’ll let you know more once I’ve taste tested more coffee. It’s a hard life isn’t it?

Writing Editing

Just a quick word on how the writing and editing is going. Slowly.

Ok a few more words. I’ve been trying to edit Parasomnia but having issues with attention span and distractions. I’m still hoping to have it done and in the hands of my first beta reader / The Weditor by early November.

Once that’s done, I’ll start a quick re-edit of A Study in Aether and then I’ll find some fresh beta-readers for more help with the editing. I’d like to resubmit this by Christmas.

And finally when I’m done with all this editing, I’ll start writing Welcome to Everdome! The fraking story has been running through my head and it’s driving me nuts. I’m looking forward to actually writing it.

What’s your favourite type of coffee, or tea?

Would you like to be a Beta Reader for either of the books?

Let me know in the comments.

Éric

Demonic Duck and Writer’s Block

Hello my Imaginary friends,

For a long time I thought I was an extrovert. I assumed that since I liked talking and loved meeting new people that I must be an extrovert. I was wrong. Extroverts are re-charged by social interaction and can start to feel sad if they don’t get any.

I’m definitely an introvert, my way of recovering and re-charging my batteries, involve solo time reading, watching TV, or writing. If I’m really drained I’ll bake. Not good for my waistline but great for my tastebuds.

Let’s just say after can-con and a really busy week at work, I’m considering making bread, maybe cookies this weekend. Thankfully I have tomorrow off.

What’s with the Blog Title?

Glad you asked.

You know all those motivational pictures that have, “You should be writing!” on them? Well I need one that says “You should be Editing!” But I keep getting distracted or blocked. Can-Con and the advice panel helped but it’s really just hard to get the motivation to edit.

The picture bellow is by Dan Shive who writes an extremely entertaining comic called El Goonish Shive. It’s a gender-swapping / urban fantasy / geek comic with lots of laughs and a long term story that rocks.

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I should be Editing…

What’s been distracting you lately?

Éric

NaNoWriMo Update Three

I’ve finally written past the boring parts of my novel. I’m sure they’re interesting to read, they just weren’t much fun to write. The characters are working together and I have more actions scenes coming up. I’m finding it a little hard to right cool gunfight scenes, maybe I should re-watch Firefly.

I’ve long past the NaNoWriMo halfway mark and I’m quickly approaching the novels half way mark. The halfway mark is 45 000 words. It’s intimidating to think I’ll have to keep this pace up over to most of December. It’s a lot of work but I’m really enjoying it, I wish I could do this for a living, maybe someday.

I have no illusions about this novel. As it is I know a lot of it needs retooling. I need to go back and edit all the dialogue to make it flow better. I also need to go back and fix the issue I seem to have with starting three out of four paragraphs with a noun or pronoun. I also need to beef up the descriptions of my characters and the world.

It’s interesting to me, that the character I liked most and had best fixed in my head before hand is most likely going to get cut from the first half of the book. He has four mini-chapters dedicated to his journals and I think I’ll just cut them out completely. I find they’re too world building oriented.

I’m keeping the polls from last week open since the twists will happen in the middle of the book, in about 10 000 more words.

It fascinates me what kind of emotions I’ve gone through, most of the first week I felt elated and couldn’t wait to write, the second I felt terrible I hated the novel and wanted to give up completely, now the third week it feels more like work but I look forward to discovering what happens.

For everyone who would like to be a Test/Beta reader, please email me or make a comment on one of my posts and I’ll get you a copy of the book when it’s done the second draft.

Here’s a poll for all you aspiring Writers.

[polldaddy poll=1121117]

Thank you for your continuing support.