30 June 2023

by | Jun 30, 2023 | Random Thoughts, Writing | 0 comments

I should probably work on coming up with better titles for these updates than simply the date. But for the moment, it works.

I feel better right now than I have since at least Monday… possibly before.

I wrote a post on the 26th about my encounter with poison something, and in the days since, my forearms evolved into an oozy mess that looked rather horrid and felt very painfully swollen. It was majorly uncomfortable to type with my arms at anything less than full extension, which was a special discomfort all on its own.

I finally broke down and went to a local urgent care, where a nice nurse was kind enough to shoot me in the butt with a steroid injection. That injection happened somewhen around 1:30pm to 2pm today, and I felt loads better by 7pm. My forearms no longer feel painfully swollen, and I am very eager to get back to writing.

I want to get Tempus out the door sooner than later, and I’ll have The Fall of Skullkeep up for pre-order by Tuesday (July 4th).

I’m also going to be testing Sendy, which will be a replacement for my email service provider that manages my email list. I’m looking forward to exploring that. As long as it does everything I need an email service provider to do and doesn’t do too much that I don’t care about, it will be a nice bit of savings over my current provider ConvertKit. ConvertKit isn’t all that expensive (even though there are less costly email providers out there), but if Sendy can do what ConvertKit does, why shouldn’t I switch?

Another source of frustration from the consequences of my encounter with the poison whatever plant is that I’ve had a new bit of tech I want to try out for a day or so that I haven’t felt like trying out. It’s called a Yubikey. It’s a hardware security key that will interface with far more accounts than I use. I could even set it up to be required to log into my computer. I doubt I’ll go that far, but I will absolutely secure all my accounts with it.

Now that I no longer feel like I’d be better off if I ended my arms at my elbows, I’m looking forward to getting my Yubikeys all set up and working. I’ve long been a proponent of being as digitally secure as one can be, and I have to admit I’m a little bit excited about this. I don’t like authenticator apps, because the one time I used one rather extensively, I forgot about it when I switched phones and had to go through a rather painful process to regain access to all those accounts. The Yubikeys should be a lot better, and unlike tradtional RSA keys, they don’t expire.

The picture above displays an RSA security key, much like the ones I had to carry as part of an IT job. I don’t know that modern keys expire like the ones I carried did, but let me tell you… it was a serious pain to discover the hard way that your key had expired when you really needed it.

The Yubikeys are a lot like the old security dongles that some software companies would include, and their software required to work. Except instead of a 25-pin parallel port or a 9-pin serial port, the Yubikey uses some form of USB port. I chose the Yubikey 5c, which uses a USB-C port and also has NFC capability. That’ll be cool if I ever decide to put card readers on my shop or house doors.

Yes… I know. Card readers on my shop or house doors are a little overboard, but there are two points about me that my close friends know really well. Number One: I’m a firm believer in “Overkill is underrated.” Number Two: I over-engineer everything.

Case in point… I plan on using 3×6’s as the floor joists and wall studs in my house with a 6×6 post for an upright every three or four joists in the load-bearing sections. For those locations where I do use a 6×6 post, I’ll use two 3×6’s for the associated joist. I will also run multiple network lines to every room with pull strings, despite having WiFi throughout the house. Both the network jacks and the wireless access points will go back to a data rack that has a ten gigabit backbone between switches and the gateway (which will be a commercial-grade firewall).

Yeah… I miss having a better data network than some businesses.  😁

As for my participation in the Great Dean Challenge, I’m falling a bit behind. I’m currently at 148,486 words since April 1st, whereas Dean is up to 184,100. I have some catching up to do, but I’m cautiously optimistic that July will afford me the opportunities to achieve that.

Once the pre-order for Skullkeep is live, I’ll make an announcement in all the usual places. Heh… the newsletter announcement might end up being my first official use of Sendy. We’ll see.

Well… I think that’s all I have for now. If you’d like to see what I’m currently writing and read the unedited chapters as I write them, give me a week to get over this poison plant and then drop by my Patreon page.

I hope the days treat you as well as possible.

Stay safe out there.


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