roblog - Official Blog of Rob Hurvitz

31 Dec 2004 - 12:42:31 PM
I guess I should post again before 2004 is over. This year has been full of ups and downs. I finished my book, which was a major up, but if I do try and get it published there'll be a significant editing process that, at this point, I'm not looking forward to at all. As I finished up the book, the tsunamis hit south Asia and east Africa. The death toll increased day by day at a horrific rate. Two friends of mine were in Railay, Thailand, but they're both okay and should be back in Seattle sometime today. Of the affected areas, I've only been to Koh Phi Phi, Thailand, but it was only for a day. By the time my brother and I got there, we realized that we didn't want to be on a resort island, even though it was a gorgeous place, and so we left. What else? I attempted Rainier, which was an up, but didn't summit, which was a down. I scrambled up a few lesser peaks, but nothing major. I did a few technical alpine climbs: the Tooth, Lundin, Liberty Bell, and Kangaroo Temple. Those were all really fun, even the two I'd climbed before. I did a road trip to Joshua Tree to go climbing and my first morning there sprained my ankle. And a road trip to Smith Rock, where I managed to avoid re-injuring my ankle. I read a number of good books, which is always an up, but saw surprisingly few movies. There are other things, some not interesting enough to mention, others too personal, and so I'll end this post right about here. Thanks. Have a happy and relatively safe new year.
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28 Dec 2004 - 12:28:34 AM
Woo hoo! Today I re-visited the troublesome Delhi chapter, tightened it up a bit, and typed in all of its edits. So, I now have a draft that I'm basically happy with. I guess that means I'm done with the writing part. And I still have nearly four days left before my deadline. Woo hoo! (Oh wait, I already said that.) Now all I have to do is figure out the publishing part...
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23 Dec 2004 - 10:09:45 AM
Some sad news this morning. My friends Bill and Sara's dog Tella died suddenly last night. Go read Bill's eulogy. I last saw Tella on Sunday. At one point she was on her back, munching on a chew toy with her front paws up and wrapped around the toy to keep it in her mouth. It was a sight to see.

Tella, in her youth
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22 Dec 2004 - 11:19:17 PM
Well, the office day yesterday had a bit of a late start, and the Delhi chapter needed a lot of work. In fact, it still needs work. Of course, once I started getting all cocky about finishing a week early the troublesome chapter reared its poorly-written head. So I'll need some of that "extra" week, after all, to work on it more. I didn't get to typing in the edits yesterday, but that's what I've been doing today, and that's been going quickly. So, the end is in sight, but I've been looking in one of those side-view mirrors: objects are farther away than they appear. Or did I get that backwards? Whatever, you get the idea.
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21 Dec 2004 - 10:49:35 AM
Yesterday I got through the Jaipur and Agra chapters. Today will be an office day, and so I'll be able to finish the final pass and start typing in the edits. I just might finish this thing this week, well before my deadline. Crazy. I could've been slacking off even more and still met the deadline. Next time I'll know better, I guess.
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20 Dec 2004 - 12:02:30 AM
I had a very good talk today with my friend Bill about publishing options. I'd been reading up on querying literary agents to follow the standard publishing route, and Bill had very interesting things to say about self-publishing and small press houses (specifically, his own Overdue Media). Traditional publishing has three main things going for it: sales, marketing, and distribution. Self-publishing, or Publish On Demand, is catching up on the distribution side, but sales and marketing is mostly up to the writer, and that's something I don't want to do. It would be very cool if Bill and Gene published my book, but who knows if they'll have the time and energy to do it, especially with production work on their third collection of Unshelved coming up. So, I have a couple avenues to expore, but I'm now feeling that one way or another it'll end up in print.

On the writing front, I finished going through chapter eight today, the longest chapter in my book. It takes place in Jaisalmer and features me riding a camel for a few days. Chapter five, as it turned out, didn't need nearly as much work as I thought it would, which was a pleasant surprise. Only four more chapters to go: Jaipur, Agra, Delhi, and Post-India (very short). Then I get to type in all the edits. And that's it. I'll be done. Oh, right -- then I throw the party. Can't wait!

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16 Dec 2004 - 6:44:03 PM
Unfortunately, there was no office day today, and so I walked down to Bauhaus to make the chapters bleed. The second chapter is all marked up with red, and I think it's not so bad now. I guess I'll see when I type in all the edits. I also got through chapters three and four, which were both pretty good, encouragingly enough. Chapter five is going to need a lot of work, but I'm feeling more and more optimistic about meeting the deadline.
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15 Dec 2004 - 10:35:01 AM
I worked on the first two chapters last night, and they still need some work. They feel much different than the last half of the book. In some ways that's okay -- I'm trying to have the book reflect my state of mind during the trip, and that changed throughout the month -- but they still need to be tightened up, especially the second chapter. But if I'm able to keep up this pace I might actually be able to meet the end of year deadline. I think my office days will be starting again tomorrow, and that will be a big help.
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13 Dec 2004 - 11:20:35 AM
This week's strips on Bill and Gene's webcomic Unshelved I originally wrote the scripts for back in July or so. The wait was worth it -- they look great. Check 'em out.
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12 Dec 2004 - 6:38:52 PM
I promise I'll never write another entry about my Kryptonite lock. Sorry about that. Anway, today I finished typing in those last 55 pages I'd scribbled out. It felt like it took forever. Now all I have to do is give the whole thing a thorough edit by the end of the year. That's 19 days for 12 chapters. It's going to be close.
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7 Dec 2004 - 3:23:17 PM
No book post today. They were starting to get a little monotonous, I know. Anyway, I got my replacement Kryptonite lock today! It has a very sporty orange base, presumably to warn off all those bic pen-toting bicycle thieves. I did eventually open my old one and remove the bike frame holder piece (had to file down a bit of the key to get it in), but the new lock has a rubbery coating all around the U portion, making it too wide to slide on the holder piece. I'll have to cut off some of the coating, I guess. Anyway, here's the shiny new lock:

New and Improved Kryptonite
My new lock
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6 Dec 2004 - 5:03:04 PM
Woo hoo! I reached Milestone Two, and I rewarded myself with a chocolate sandcastle doughnut. I don't think they used real sand, though. I didn't really feel anything special when I finished scribbling. I stared at the page and thought, Is that it? Just to be sure, I wrote "FIN" and underlined it, but still, no big whoop. I was much more excited about it last night. Weird.
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5 Dec 2004 - 11:40:39 PM
It's time for me to get out of denial and admit to myself that it's really December. I didn't finish the scribbling yesterday as I'd hoped, nor today, even, but I'm very, very close. Maybe 500 words away from bagging Milestone Two: The End of the Scribbling. I can't freaking wait. I feel like I should finish it here at home, but I'm going to wait and do it in a cafe. I'm thinking Top Pot. When I put down that last period I can then celebrate with a doughnut. It's really hard for me to believe that three and a half years after first setting pen to paper I'll finally be done scribbling. Of course, I still have to type in these last fifty-odd pages and do a thorough once-over of the whole book, but tomorrow will be a big day for me. And I'm really looking forward to throwing that I'm Finally Done party in January.
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