As I wrote in the last post, I was going to go technology free for the weekend. No Computer, Email, Twitter or Smart Phone or any activity which may require any of the aforementioned. (Any posts on Twitter that you may have noticed were added to Buffer App before the start of the weekend.)

So how did it go. The best part of the whole experience was the quietness. No jumping around to look at email or any other possible distraction from the technology. No looking on the internet to find that tidbit of information I needed at the moment. That would wait for later. The worst part was always wanting to look even though everything in the house was shut down. It was tempting, however, to turn some of them on. I DID NOT!

I should be proud of myself I suppose, but I’ve come to realize that I am very much dependent on technology. This morning I raced to open my computer and phone only to find a swamp of emails and texts that required answering. I spend the most of this morning doing that.

Perhaps we can come to a happy middle spot. One that allows us to feel free to relax without intrusion and, yet, in touch enough in order to know what is happening with those closest to us.

This weekend was a success and I’ll we striving to find that happy middle.

We live in the second decade of the 21st Century with all the technological conveniences one could possibly think of. Computers, access to the internet, Twitter, Facebook and any number of social media to keep in touch with what is happening in the world and our own social circles. Email keep us in touch with loved ones and friends as well as helping in our business dealings.

We entertain ourselves wiprinted-circuit-board-1227226-mth games consoles like PS and XBox all connected to the internet or the, seemingly, unlimited selection of online games.
And don’t forget the SmartTVs capable of streaming videos from the internet or wirelessly from your computer.
Smart Phones are a given. Most people today have one and they are basically a mini computer connected to the internet via a data package or wifi.
Now imagine a world without all these conveniences. A large segment of our society, especially teens and YA, could not possibly be without this technology. At my age I don’t have to imagine. I grew up in the 70′s and 80′s when cable TV had maybe ten channels (where I lived, anyway) and your phone was plugged into the wall via a cord: sometimes a very long cord.
I’m going to find out how much I remember life without, and how much I’ve come to rely on these modern conveniences: or are they a curse?
Starting Saturday, the computers will stay for the weekend. No email, Twitter, Facebook and whatever the internet may have to offer and grab my attention. The Galaxy S2 will be turned off. If you need to get a hold of me call my landline (I will take the cell phone with me, but will only turn it on in case of an emergency). That also means giving up reading my Kindle or Kobo. Pixels will be replaced by paper. Should be a few books around the house.
I’m going to find out if I’m addicted to technology.
Perhaps some of you would care to join me.
On Monday I’ll let you know how it went. Until then I’ll continue to do what I always do, writing with pen and paper.

Spring Is Finally Here?

Posted: March 23, 2014 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

So Spring officially arrived on March 20, only a few days ago. Here in Calgary it is debatable as there has been more than a dusting of snow the past few days and temperatures dropping to around -13 C. overnight. But there is still hope. Seems to be this way every year in these part. I’ve seen snow in this wonderful city in July. Crazy eh.

crocus-1248986-mThe good thing about all this is that I’ll be able to go outside soon to take my dog to  the park and sit and relax and write. There nothing like sitting in the sun with a notebook in my lap writing as I’m inspired by the grandeur of God’s creation. This will need to  wait for a while as the weather forecast is calling for more of the same weather we are currently experiencing. But it will happen, sooner or later. We’ll get some good weather in April and should be in full swing outside writing by May.

 

In the meantime there is the hope of things to come.

Either way: happy writing.

———————–

elishas bonesElisha’s Bones (A Jack Hawthorne Adventure Book #1)
by Don Hoesel @DonHoesel

Kindle Edition

— Book Description —

Every year, professor of antiquities Jack Hawthorne looks forward to the winter break as a time to hide away from his responsibilities. Even if just for a week or two. But this year, his plans are derailed when he’s offered almost a blank check from a man chasing a rumor.

Billionaire Gordon Reese thinks he knows where the bones of the prophet Elisha are–bones that in the Old Testament brought the dead back to life. A born skeptic, Jack doesn’t think much of the assignment but he could use the money, so he takes the first step on a chase for the legendary bones that will take him to the very ends of the earth. But he’s not alone. Joined with a fiery colleague, Esperanza Habilla, they soon discover clues to a shadowy organization whose long-held secrets have been protected . . . at all costs. As their lives are threatened again and again, the real race is to uncover the truth before those chasing them hunt them down.

— Taken From Amazon Product Page —

A few days ago my computer crashed at the most inconvenient time. So when is it a convenient time? Fortunately I back up all my documents and important files on a cloud such as DropBox. But what about software and recovery discs. There’s nothing more frustrating than finding out a disc has been compromised just when you need it, and then what do you do?

GMail’s Google Drivblue-screen-of-death-bsod-1315235-me currently allows you to  store up to 15 Gb per account. That’s a lot of files, and if you use Google Chrome, Drive will permit you to upload folder along with their contents.

After my last crash I did just that. Everything I considered important enough to keep went to Google Drive.

Over the next few days I’ll be re-installing everything I need and if there is a problem with a disc, I’ll download the files and burn them to disc. It’s that simple.

So try this method for backing up. If it works for me, perhaps it will work for you.

I have been away for a while working in the upper reaches of Northern Alberta. Twelve hour days for ten days at a time is not conducive to writing a novel or any other work. It is not an excuse either. It’s not impossible to do, only difficult.

It was for this reason I sought out someone who could help me with this aspect of my writing: finding someone to motivate me when there didn’t seem to be enough minutes in a day.

black-notebook-with-pencil-1176000-mEnter the Writing Accountability Partner. I discovered mine while working up North. A fellow worker who also turned out to be a writer. I asked Bradley if he would do this, no small task, for me. He agreed and I, in turn, reciprocated.

I have found him helpful when I somehow couldn’t (wouldn’t) push myself to write or found myself blocked.

We started with a daily/weekly word count, but it’s more than that. It’s about having someone who will inspire and motivate you to write and not judge you when you feel you’ve come up short.

In this way Bradley has been valuable in the development of my manuscripts, and I hope I am doing the same for him.

Now that I am no longer working up North, Bradley and I don’t spend as much time together talking about our writing, but the wonders of modern communication help keep our partnership alive: email, texting, phone calls. It really doesn’t matter where your Writing Accountability Partner lives so long as you can communicate.

If you don’t already have a Writing Accountability Partner, perhaps you should think about finding one. You won’t regret it.

I have begun to keep a daily public record of my writing totals. In a way it another way of being accountable: to you the blog reader. Some days are better than others and on Sunday I usually count a 0. Everyone needs at least one day off.

Feel free to drop by here and check my progress. Should you leave a message of encouragement that would be greatly appreciated.

Currently Reading “The Crown Tower” by Michael J. Sullivan

I should say, just finished reading “The Crown Tower” only yesterday (Feb.22, 2040)  in only three days. Which is very fast for me. The book describes the beginnings of Hadrian and Royce together as a team. Was it what I expected? No. Was I disappointed? Again no. Having read the previous series I found this book helpful in filling in much of what was left unsaid about these two. It was an enjoyable read and based on the short length of time I took to read it, I couldn’t put it down for long. The next book in the series “The Rose and the Thorn” will be on my to read list very soon. I’ll give “The Crown Tower” 4 stars. Happy reading and don’t forget to drop by @author_sullivan and say hello.

The Crown Tower (The Riyria Chronicles 1)
The Crown Tower
Michael J. Sullivan @author_sullivan

Kindle Edition
Paperback

— Book Description —

Two men who hate each other. One impossible mission. A legend in the making.
Hadrian Blackwater, a warrior with nothing to fight for is paired with Royce Melborn, a thieving assassin with nothing to lose. Together they must steal a treasure that no one can reach. The Crown Tower is the impregnable remains of the grandest fortress ever built and home to the realm’s most prized possessions. But it isn’t gold or jewels that the old wizard is after, and if he can keep them from killing each other they become a legendary team.

This is the first book in the new series, The Riyria Chronicles, from best-selling author Michael J. Sullivan. It takes place twelve years before the events of The Riyria Revelations and no prior knowledge of those books is required. You can read in either chronological order or order of publication, although the author suggests reading in publication order.

— Taken From Amazon Product Page —