East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

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The dog ate my homeworks

ellisonI could justify the delay in the completion of the final episode of AMARNA with some tear-jerker story about how shattered I was at the news of Harlan Ellison’s death.
And indeed, it felt like being punched in the face. Harlan Ellison looked like the kind of guy that would shrug off an inconvenience like dying.
I could make excuses about the fact that I had to work on two translations on whose sale hinges my ability to pay my mortgage.
That, and an article about Journey, the band.
I could simply claim that my PC fizzed as I was trying to update to Ubuntu 18.04, and I lost everything but my way home.

The fact is, I am still 8000-words short of the ending, and I have spent the whole day so far writing something else (distant peal of thunder).
There! Now you have it, what disgustingly undisciplined slob I am!
And I dare call myself a professional? Ah, I should be dragged on the Red Square and shot in the back as an enemy of the Revolution! Continue reading

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8000 words to the end

The only constant in my writing of AMARNA as a serial has been so far the fact that I usually jettison about 6000 words three days before the deadline.
Today it was different.
Today I jettisoned the whole 10.000 words of the final episode.
We are back to page 1.

But rest assured, I will get you the final episode of the serial by the 30th of this month – and then I’ll start working on the deluxe, content-rich, Kindle X-Ray enabled edition.
And the deluxe paper book.
And all the rest.
Now I only need some time to fit the pieces back together.
Hold on.

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AMARNA, episode 5

Amarna preview smallThe fifth episode of AMARNA is live on Gumroad, where you can download the ebook in mobi, epub and pdf format, as a handy zip file.

I hope everything works fine – in the last few days, thanks to the GPDR thingie the European Union implemented, I have been experiencing all sorts of troubles: basically there is a digital wall around Europe, and many service providers outside of the EU are simply discontinuing their support for European customers until they understand what exactly the GPDR means for them.

I hope everything’s fine.
In case of problems, please let me know.


Egyptian Mathematics

220px-Open_University_coat_of_armsI am taking a short course on Egyptian Mathematics.
No, really.
It’s part of the Mathematics curriculum at The Open University, and it is available for free as an ebook through Amazon.
Indeed, you should check out The Open University on Amazon – there’s hundreds of course ebooks for free, covering all sorts of subjects, from sciences to law to humanities, to business. Absolutely great.

Of course (ah!) the main reason I’m reading this book on Egyptian Mathematics is as a form of research for my stories – there might be some ideas I can recycle in AMARNA, and both the Aculeo & Amunet stories and the tales of the Contubernium might use some of the stuff in here. For the same reasons, I have also the companion course on Babylonian Mathematics here on my reader. Continue reading


I split the party

pp,220x200-pad,220x200,ffffff.u2Don’t split the party is one of the basic unwritten rules of roleplaying games, and one that players usually learn the hard way.
Splitting the party makes it hard on the game master, and it weakens the party itself – and a weak party plus an irritated game master is a recipe for disaster.
But I did it.
As i was writing the fourth episode of AMARNA – currently being edited – I did split the party.
Valerie and Tenn on one mission, Charles and Lavinia Throckmorton on another. And because we are following the story through Valerie’s first person narrative, we basically miss the whole Chuck & Vinnie part of the adventure.
Which is unavoidable.
Or is it? Continue reading