7 July 2022

by | Jul 7, 2022 | Random Thoughts | 0 comments

One of my goal in the second half of this year is to do a better job of posting to my site. We’re seven days into July, and I think this is the first post since I announced that I lost Mom.

Best laid plans… right?

Well, I have a couple projects coming up that I want to chronicle, and I’ll take lots of pictures and post write-ups here. In addition to that, I will starting working on my grandparents’ house… probably in the fall or even possibly in the winter. I have no reason to believe critters have taken up residence in the house, but my uncle and cousin found a couple blacksnake skins in the cellar house recently (one of them rather large). So, I’m going to be as cautious as possible.

The eventual goal is to renovate my grandparents’ house and make it my primary, full-time residence. And yes… I realize–with Mom gone and the place in my name–that it will technically be my house, but right this second, I cannot envision a time when I will not think of it as my grandparents’ house… even if I’m 80. Maybe that’s something I should work on.

That house is going to be a lot of work. First, I need to clean it out. It has sat dormant for many years, and it has basically become an impromptu storage building. The basement is… well… not good in terms of clutter and junk, and a number of the basement windows–those rectangular panels with two squares of glass–are missing either the glass or the entire panel. So, a critter or two has probably invaded the basement.

The first major hurdle after that is the fact that my grandparents didn’t have the money for cement blocks when they built the house. They used cinder blocks for the basement walls and the porch foundation. Fortunately, Grandpa foresaw the need to replace them, so he designed the house so that it could be jacked up enough to replace all the cinder blocks with cement blocks.

That will be the first headache.

Once that’s finished, it really becomes a matter of deciding which project I’ll want to tackle next. I need to re-do the well and the plumbing. I need to re-wire the electrical… as it has the fuse box and cloth wiring from when it was built in 1960. I need to replace all the carpet and linoleum. I want to replace the ceiling in the living room. I want to add central heat and A/C. I also want to update all the windows.

As part of the re-wiring process, I’m also going to add CAT5e and CAT6. The CAT5e is for a landline telephone, and the CAT6 is for data. I will also have Ubiquiti access points for wireless, and honestly, two should more than cover the house.

I will take plenty of photos, both before and after.

Eventually, I’ll have to make the decision on whether to add onto the house or build a new one, because the floor plan and overall size isn’t a perfect fit for me. There are three bedrooms, one of which will become my office, and I’ll keep the other two as bedrooms… mine and a guest.

I will probably discover more items to add to the list once I start this journey, but for right now, this is what’s on my mind for the place. It won’t be easy, but the worthwhile stuff never is. The main thing is that I’ll soon live in the house where I played in the floor as a toddler while Mom and Dad went to work. That’s special to me.

As for writing news…

Progress on The Fall of Skullkeep is not what I’d like. I’m not sure why. The words are there. I know where I’m going, and I’m excited to write it. But it’s just not clicking for some reason.

A thought in the back of my mind is that it was the project at the forefront of my mind when Mom died, and I’m wondering if the writing of Skullkeep has somehow become all snarled up in that. I dunno. Even with ten novels, one novella, and a handful of short stories… I’m still kinda new at the full-time professional fiction writer gig.

So, in the hopes of cleansing my creative palate–so to speak–I’m going to dive into Primogenitor #4… maybe even another Sam Colton short story. I want to work my way up to a consistent daily word count of 5,500+ words, and the only way to do that is to put the time in.

Honestly, I’d love to put in 10,000+ words each day, but that might not be possible without dictation. I haven’t cracked that, yet. I have everything I need, but I haven’t broken through the tendancy for my mind to go blank when I start Dragon or press ‘record.’

In connectivity news…

I received my Starlink RV order on July 2nd. Right now, it’s just hanging out in the back yard on the little quad-pod stand that comes in the box with it. I have a 16-foot post that will serve as the first attempt to get the dish high enough that the trees surrounding the house are less of an issue. While the post is Plan A, I have at least three or four contingencies, culminating in a 75-foot guyed tower with a hinged base. But the 75-foot tower is kinda my ‘going nuclear’ option. I don’t want to do that, except as an ultimate last resort.

All that being said, even with the rampant arboreal interruptions to the signal, I have no intention of using any other satellite service for internet here. It is honestly that much better.

I’ll take pictures of that entire journey, too, for a later write-up.

Well… I think that’s everything I could possibly provide as an update for now. I’m sure I’m forgetting something, but this is sufficiently long and rambling that it’s probably best I sign off. After all, I don’t want to bore anyone to tears… or worse.

I hope the days treat you and yours well.

Until next time…


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