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This!
I fell in love with this series almost 30 years ago, and this was the book that started it all.

Originally posted by rolanni at Sufficient unto the day is the excitement thereof

So, let's see...

Early today, we discovered that Agent of Change was now available, DRM-free, from the Baen Free Library, which means it's also available for free download from Amazon, because that's how the Big River rolls. Since the purpose of giving the first one away for free is to addict acquaint new readers with the Liaden Universe®, we ask that you please point out Agent's availability to your friends, coworkers, family members, strangers chance-met on the street. . . and, if you're able, to boost the signal, by mentioning Agent's free-to-download goodness in your blog, on Twitter, or Facebook, or wherever readers congregate online. Also? The Kindle edition needs reader reviews, to help curious newbies decide whether or not they want to read this book.

As of this writing, the free edition of Agent of Change has a bestseller rank of 632, which puts it at #1 in Kindle Space Opera, and #62 in Kindle Science Fiction and Fantasy. For whatever that's worth -- of which more in a moment.

OK, so that was the morning shift.

This afternoon, we learned that Dragon Ship by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller was the Number One Best Read of 2012, according to those who voted in SFSite's Best SF and Fantasy Books of 2012: Reader's Choice, where it is one of an amazing six Baen titles on the list.

Speaking of Amazon bestsellers (see how I did that? Smooth, right?), I came across this article, in which a new author is stunned by the financial rewards of his chosen profession.

Then there's this article, which talks about the challenges of lipreading -- if you read nothing else tonight, read this article; it's fascinating.

And, apropos of nothing much, except that I was inside Steve's camera earlier and found this -- for your viewing pleasure, here is a picture of part of our living room. The part with the Yule tree (which is still up), the Skylark Award sporting it's classy! cover! that was kindly created for it by Kat Ayers Mannix.

In-between the Skylark and the tree is the Prism Award, recklessly unshrouded. Directly before the Skylark are the extra Skylark Shrouds Kat also made. And, yes, that is a red metallic cloth covering the top of the old radio on which all of this is arranged.






Yule Tree, Skylark, Prism, Cover Art by David Mattingly




Yule Tree, Skylark, Prism,
Cover Art by David Mattingly



Of the ElJay mobile app. So far, it's 100% better than LJ's official offering.

http://www.cmt.com/news/country-music/1682014/earl-scruggs-dies-in-nashville-at-age-88.jhtml

Current Mood: sadsad

We have two dogs. One turns 15 this year; the other, 16. The "younger" dog is creaky and cranky, but still loving, lively, and the bane of the backyard squirrels. The older dog is senile, deaf and incontinent. We joke about the Easter Puppy paying us visits and leaving eggs in unexpected places. It's either that or cry, since our sweet, quick-witted Sheltie girl now has the cognitive capacity of a guinea pig.

Well, when I got home at lunch, my first thought was that the Easter Puppy had exploded. One of the symptoms of CCD is incontinence. The other is patrolling. Couple those with an easy circular route through the front room to the foyer to the dining room, and back to the front room. What you get is a round trail of poo, well-trodden into both floor and carpet, and flaking off the still-patrolling Sheltie's dainty paws. I'm tellin' ya', they ought to use that stuff for mortar. It took me almost an hour, just to get it off the FLOOR.

What was worse was that Jessie, the younger dog, was trying to help. Matt's been feeding both dogs tasty supplements, to include coconut oil. And no, I don't want to talk about it. :-P

Sigh...

Current Mood: melancholymelancholy
Current Music: Xumantra: Healing Bells

The folks here:

http://jayewells.com/2011/10/18/urban-fantasy-month-contest/trackback/

are running a contest, with the five winners receiving a bucketload of urban fantasy books. I've only read one of them - "Hexed," by Kevin Hearne, and it was great. So great, in fact, that Matt and I bought tickets to his book signing party next April.

I haven't encountered the other authors' work before. I hope I can get acquainted by winning the giveaway :o)

This is wonderful. It reminds me of the scene in Moscow on the Hudson, where Russian defector Robin Williams visits his first American grocery store and tries to buy coffee.

http://blogs.forbes.com/davepell/2011/04/06/tech-options-goodbye-living-hello-deciding/

"A few years ago, the only lesson I had to learn about music storage was to keep my records away from the back of a car on a hot day."

Current Mood: amusedamused

"A federal magistrate is granting Sony the right to acquire the internet IP addresses of anybody who has visited PlayStation 3 hacker George Hotz’s website from January of 2009 to the present."

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2011/03/geohot-site-unmasking/

Not only that, but in a burst of judiciary enthusiasm, the judge also approved Sony's request for all associated logs of visitors to Hotz's YOUTUBE video of the jailbreak.

Everyone who visited his website, or his blog, or the designated YouTube page, will have their IP addresses and associated activity handed over to Sony.

Gee, when I was trying to find out if Zyrtec-D required a prescription (it doesn't), I stumbled across a site describing how to separate out components of various Pseudoephedrine-HCL-containing medications, in order to produce meth. I spent a few minutes on the page, in horrified curiosity. In Sony's Brave New World, that makes me a criminal.

Sony is quick to point out that jailbroken PS3s can be used to watch pirated movies. Yes, and I can use Audacity to record illegal music, too. Guess they'd better outlaw Audacity's "record" button.

...and the "friend" won't reveal the soldier's name.  Nice.

http://www.examiner.com/dogs-in-national/soldier-s-dogs-surrendered-to-az-shelter-public-help-needed-to-facilitate-a-reunion

Update - the story was incorrect.  The real owners had to surrender the dogs, who have since been adopted.  Still a sad story, but not on the same level.  And it had a happy ending.

Flood the fields; save (some of) the birds:

deltafarmpress.com/news/rice-flood-birds-0702/

First off, I think the hummingbirds consider my feeding stations the low-rent district. They didn't bother to show up this year until July, while my friends in Christoval started bragging in April :o)

So I had an empty hook outside, and a nice, clean feeder in the drainboard. I picked it up and cussed. The little net cage was missing from one of the "flowers." I thought it was broken. I fished around the drainboard, found it, and it slipped right back on. That's when it hit me.

We've had these particular feeders for at least three years. I like the glass container, but thought the intricate little plastic parts were going to be a nightmare to clean. I was right. I did the best I could, running LOTS of water through them, and using a toothbrush where I could reach. It's been a nagging annoyance, every time I refilled the jars.

So today, I gently grasped one of the still-attached cages and tugged. It slipped right off. There was three years of gruck on the inside of the decorative "flower." Emboldened, I grabbed the flower and tugged. It also slid off. By the time I was done, the feeder that I thought only split into three parts (four, if you felt like unscrewing the perch) was sitting in 12 pieces (perch still screwed on).

All of the parts were totally toothbrush-accessible, except the little straws coming off the base, where the flowers attach, and a pipecleaner will take care of those. Several years after purchase, I'm admiring the design of these things :o)

No WONDER they weren't in a hurry to come to dinner. Ugh. In my defense, my lowest scores on the ASVAB were in "Mechanical." Sometimes, I just don't see how things fit together.

How I thought it broke down...

How I thought it broke down

How it really broke down

How it really broke down

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