Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Week goes by ...

A week goes by and I don't bother to post. I wish I could say that this means I have been working like a busy little bee but this has not been the case. I have been playing around with a few things here and there but I haven't done anything in an organized enough manner to successfully get at least one thing DONE so that I can feel good and brag about it. I hope to have major updates to the website this weekend and possibly even upload some things to OneBookShelf/RPGNow. This doesn't mean I will release them right away as I think I should try to advertise a bit first. I can upload things and set a release date for them so they aren't available until that date.
I keep hearing horror tales about declining sales. Now, there are a few companies that haven't done too poorly (from what I hear) but they have been running various deals and promotions. Getting involved in such promotions is time consuming and I would like to insure I have the time before committing it.

Other News: sometime this weekend I'll start a different blog for the family news so people that are more interested in just the RPG side can avoid all of the soccer, piano, dance, gymnastics, etc. Our friends from Illinois left yesterday evening. We had a great time, it was wonderful to see them again, and it was wonderful to have good weather too. DS#1 had a tournament over the weekend and played quite well. His team had 2 wins out of 4 games putting them tied for second in their grouping. The team that game in first beat everyone, our boys were pleased that they were the only team to score a goal on the group leader. Some parents were a bit upset because 3 of the 4 games were played against teams a year older than ours. I guess only two teams for our age group/division signed up so we ended up playing against bigger boys. This is the age where one year is a pretty big difference in size and development. Anyway, the boys had a good time.

We don't have any soccer practices this week, yeah!. Of course, DS#1 just ran off with a school friend to go to meet some other boys at one of the city parks to, you guessed it, play soccer. I am just happy he has a team sport that he truly enjoys. DS#2 was invited to be a guest player for a tournament this weekend. We declined, it is our only free weekend and DS#2 didn't know anyone on the team AND he didn't want to play for a team from another club. It was very nice to be invited though.

I have a few more minutes to do things so this is all for today, er, probably a few days, okay, maybe another week ...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

More on Layout

Well, it is interesting, I have been reading more and more about layout and, you guessed it, decided to go back and make some changes to the minibooks I have already finished. Some of the changes had to do with several pieces I have read about the best places to put artwork on a page, other changes were related to ink use for people printing out the .pdfs. The fact that I use a laser printer means that I didn't think enough about black ink use for inkjet users. It is difficult to describe, but I set apart some rooms and/or information by having white text on a black background. This has been converted to black text on a 10% or 20% black (ie. light gray) background.

That brings me back to when am I going to finally upload some things, announce that I am finally "open," advertise, etc.?

Well, we have company coming this weekend. Our good friends from Illinois (DD's godfather, G, and his family) are coming on Saturday evening and will be staying through next Tuesday. J. has a teacher's conference here in SA so they used it as an excuse for the whole family to come visit. This means I am definitely not trying to release this weekend. I am STILL trying to recover and organize from the new floors and the new entertainment center as well as get things ready for our guests. Fortunately, the kids have off from school the entire week next week and my lovely wife took Monday and Tuesday off too. This means we can all do things together and really have a nice time. My lovely wife is on-call Thanksgiving Day so we still haven't decided what we are doing then. This means that I am thinking about uploading some things and planning for releases either in December, or on "Black Thursday" depending upon what sort of advertising plans RPGNow/OneBookShelf might have going.

Okay, that is the GU News, how about some Soccer News?! DS#2's team played a small "club-friendly" 3v3 tournament this weekend. They were split into two teams and both teams won all of their games. More importantly though, 3v3 games can be a lot of fun and all of the kids simply had a blast. DS#2 has been used to being a defender but his coach has been pushing him into a more of a scoring role. He really enjoyed scoring goals over the weekend and it was fun for all of us to watch. DS#1 has a tournament this weekend. He has 2 games Saturday (before our guests arrive) and 2 games Sunday (um, oops). The first Sunday game is at 7:50 AM. This pretty much means we have go get up at about 6 AM (hmmm, maybe 6:15). Of course, I'll be up late with G drinking margaritas so that could be a bit painful (did I say 6:15, maybe 6:30 ...). The second game is at 11:30 so we should still have most of the afternoon to relax (and drink more margaritas).

We'll be getting a break from soccer practice next week and then there are only a few more practices before the winter "break." DS#2 will start again in February, DS#1 starts again in January. DS#1 will probably also have a few "unofficial" practices during the rest of December but we'll see what happens with that.

DD, well she is really enjoying the Dance and Gymnastics classes she has been taking. This week I actually got to watch part of the classes (while chasing DS#3) and the fact that I haven't seen her in class for a while makes the things she has been learning much more clear. Usually my wife either comes home early enough to take her to these classes or meets me there so I can bring the boys (DS#2 and #3, DS#1 is never home before we leave for these classes) home. The differences in ability and learning really do become more clear when you don't see the classes every week.

Well, that is about all for now. I think I am probably going to set up a separate blog for the family stuff in a week or two. This way the people that just want GU news can check this blog while those that want more of the family info can check the other one. Of course, I don't blog that often so it means that each blog probably only gets updated once a week, but hey, that's life!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Why am I so Busy?

Okay, for some reason I seem to be constantly busy, and when not busy I have done a bit of veging in front of the TV or playing Resistance 2 on the PS3. Fantastic game by the way.
GU News: Well, I have gotten some more writing done as well as more editing and even a piece or two of art. Still not completely pleased with my maps, but the maps I have tried to draw/make with the computer alone don't come out satisfactory either. I have also had some ideas for completely different products and (potentially) wasted some time looking into to those a bit more. Add to that a bit of work on advertising blurbs and some thoughts/sketches for banner ads and I guess you get a busy boy. The worst part is, I know that a number of these things aren't going to see much use, but at least it has been educational for me.
Other News: Soccer is winding down for DS#1 and DS#2. DS#2 has a 3v3 tournament tomorrow which should be a lot of fun for him. After that a few more practices and break until the spring season. DS#1 has a tournament next weekend and then a few more weeks of practice before the break. His break is not as long, he starts practice again in January, DS#2 gets to wait until February. DS#1 will probably also practice a bit during December, possibly playing Futsol (a Brazilian game that is very soccer related). DD has a dance recital (apparently very relaxed and not so major) in December and she has a piano recital Dec 6th. She has been up and down on piano lately, sometimes loving it, sometimes wanting to quit. We'll be making her stick with it a bit longer. She now claims she want to play soccer again next year. We plan to wait and see how true that is ;).

Monday, November 10, 2008


Funny, I could have sworn I posted something on the weekend. I guess I just THOUGHT about posting.
Saturday was a day with hours and hours spent behind the wheel driving. DS#1 had a soccer game in Laredo, TX, which is about a 2 hour 45 minute drive from here. The drive was a bit longer coming back, and we had 2 of his teammates with us so I took those boys home. They don't live particularly close to us so that was some extra driving too. Honestly though, the boys were fantastic, they basically watched a movie on the way out (Matrix) and another on the way back (Transformers) with a stop for food on the way home. The soccer game itself was good. While our team lost, the boys played well and the teams were pretty evenly matched. The game could have gone either way.
Sunday, well, Sunday I pretty much veged. I outlined some broad ideas in my infamous notebook while watching football with periodic trips outside to check on the older 3 kids. My lovely wife got in a fairly long nap with DS#3. I was feeling a bit tired and off, probably from Saturday, but a bug seems to be going around too, so who knows.
As for today, DS#3 had a bad day. This kept me from getting anything done. Tomorrow is Veteran's Day and my wife is a contractor for the military. She is not on-call so this means she has the day off. She is on-call Wednesday so she is off Thursday too. Strange as it sounds, this bizarre schedule means I should be able to get some work done, whether it is drawing, writing, whatever.
Well, more news in a few days.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Back cover blurbs

Well, I am now working on a set of "back cover blurbs" for the various mini-pdfs I have completed. I am also thinking about what to do for advertising and how to go about it. Let's face it, I don't want to spend a bunch of money on advertising because I don't have high hopes for huge sales and I'll be pricing these fairly low.

Strangely, sometimes it seems that the more work I have done on some of these projects the more I start thinking about just throwing in the towel and working on completely different projects such as children's books and games. It would be a complete shame to waste the work I have done already as well as the work done by others that I have paid for. I also want to see how these things do.

Before the time change DS#3 was taking a fairly regular and reasonably long nap. This week he is definitely having problems adjusting. Looks like the nap time I was hoping for isn't going to be happening. Oh well, let's see what else I can finish up.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

As Expected

I haven't really had time to work on any blurbs or decide how I am going to do releases, advertising, etc.
Halloween on Friday night and soccer games yesterday are part of it. We have a bit of a "block party" for halloween and then the kids run off to trick-or-treat. DS#1 played some soccer with a few friends for a bit before walking round the neighborhood with one of them. Then he ends up phoning me from a someone's house a few blocks away. I guess she was having a sleep-over with some girl friends and DS#1 and a few other boys ended up over there. Yes, a bunch of cute girls and about 4 very happy boys.
Saturday we were able to sleep late because the soccer games were in the afternoon. Unfortunately, before leaving I found I had a flat tire and had to change the tire. This meant we ended up taking 2 cars ... anyway, it was a hectic day. DS#1 wasn't feeling well, which was a real shame. He started the game and was playing well but then he raised his hand to come out and pretty much just looked pale and miserable while watching his team lose yet another game they should have won. Oh well, even losses can be a learning experience. Next Saturday we have to drive to Laredo for his game. I'm not looking forward to it.

Tomorrow I have to get the van taken care of. I am hoping the tire can be repaired rather than having to replace it. Tomorrow night is a meeting to get information about the magnet (specialty) high schools in the district. DS#1 and I will have to go to that. I can remember holding DS#1 in one hand. Now he is taller than me, how does this happen??

I will be trying to work on some of the GU stuff this evening and tomorrow but I don't have high hopes of getting a lot done. The weather outside is, well, incredible, and I am (obviously) going to have to grill. I am trying something new this evening so let's hope we don't end up ordering pizza! :)