Long Time, No See!

Wow, it’s been a long time since I last posted something here. I’m still not entirely convinced that anyone reads these things, but just in case, I wanted to come on and let you know what’s going on.

Long story short, I moved.

Long story a little less short, we finally have found the place we can call home probably for the rest of our lives. See, Krista and I bought our first home back in December of 2001, and we lived there for about seven years. But about three and a half years ago my wife’s father, Butch, died, and we inherited his house, which not only was a little bigger than our own and with a much larger back yard, but it was also completely paid off. Since I’d been laid off earlier that year and we were living solely off of Krista’s income, getting out from under a mortgage seemed like a good idea. So, we sold our home, paid off the mortgage, then took the remaining money and used it to do some remodeling of her father’s house as we moved into it. We were happy to have more space, the dogs were happy to have more yard to run around on, and not paying a monthly house payment was wonderfully freeing. Everything was great… for awhile…

What we didn’t realize was how difficult it was going to be to live in the house her father once lived in, a house she’d spent many good and bad years in when she was younger. It wasn’t easy for her to process his death, and living in his house only made it harder. Neither of us was prepared for the mental issues that came with living there. You can’t remodel memories away, or the heartache of losing a parent. Couple that with the longer commute she had to make to work every day, and it wasn’t long before we knew we would have to find a new place to live.

We tried for awhile to buy land and build a custom house on it, but the troubles we encountered there are too numerous to go into here. Suffice it to say, we weren’t able to do that. So instead we decided to look for a house that was for sale and met our needs. Need number one? More land! We have a lot of dogs, and we have a dislike for close neighbors, so finding a place on two or so acres was a must. We also wanted a place with more square footage, that was closer to her work, and if possible a place that already had a pool. As you can imagine, finding a house that met all those criteria wasn’t going to be easy. Surprisingly enough, after looking through the local real estate listings, we found a few contenders. And, when we went out to see them in person, the very first one we went through was PERFECT. It was on 2.6 acres, had several hundred more square feet, the garage was enormous, the landscaping was amazing, and the pool… oh, the pool… The price the sellers were asking for was a bit over our budget, but they were incredibly motivated to sell, so when we offered a number that was within our budget, they took it. Usually buying a house is a fairly lengthy and complicated affair, but not with this one. In record time we had paperwork drawn up and signed, inspections made (the inspector we hired to look at it said it was the best looking house he’d seen in years, and if we weren’t buying it he’d been sorely tempted), and money exchanged. I think, all totaled, it took only a couple of weeks to get it all done.

And so now, a month later, we’re finally all moved in an unpacked. You don’t think about how much stuff you own until you have to put every last piece of it in a box, and you never curse it so much as you do when you’re taking it back out and finding a new place for it. We were fortunate that the house was in a great condition and required very little work (I think all we’ve done is replace a couple of the appliances with ones we already owned and liked better and put up a ceiling fan in two rooms). My office was the last room to get done, but I think it’s the one I’m most happy with. It reflects my personality to a T. One of the reasons it took so long was because of my desk, which was stalled because of my new computer, which…

Yeah, the day before we moved my Dell got infected with a virus. I tried to fix it to no avail, and my brother Scott was able to get most of it rooted out, but there were just some things that weren’t correctable, so I limped along as best I could while we unpacked. Eventually, though, it gave up the ghost, so I ordered a new one. This time I went with an iMac. I know a lot of writers and podcasters who are ardent Mac users, and they all convinced me to give it a try. It’s not been easy to get used to a new operating system, but I’m getting more comfortable with it every day. Along with the new computer, though, I wanted to get a new desk. I’ve been reading a lot lately that says sitting down for hours a day is dangerous to your health, so I resolved to get a desk I could stand up and work at. Buying one looked to be an incredibly expensive proposition, so I decided to make use of my new big garage and build a desk. I’m no Bob Villa, but it actually came out pretty good. Much better than I would have thought of anyway. Once the new desk was in place, the new iMac went up on it, and then the rest of the office fell into place around them.

And so there you have it. I’ve been one busy beaver. I hate that it’s taken me so long to get to my site, but computer viruses and moving to a new house can do that. I also have news on my writing, but before I get to that let me post a few pictures of the house. I hope you like them.

Here’s the front of the house. I love the stone work in the lawn. The house has a rustic feel without feeling too country.

This is the view from the swing on the front porch. Being that far back from the road is nice.

This is the pool area. When I get in it I feel like I’m at a resort. We couldn’t have asked for a better pool.

And here is my new desk and computer. Oh, and the cat in the lower right corner? That’s Silvie, my office kitty.

So, when you imagine me slaving away at a computer pounding out the words to my story, that’s where I’m doing it. Speaking of writing…

Well, HAYWIRE is still out and doing okay. I’d love for it to be selling more, but I do what I can. Crescent Moon Press recently sent me the final line edits for A MINOR MAGIC, and I just finished going over them yesterday. Now the file is back with them. When I know more, I will post it here immediately. Since that’s off my plate, next week I get back to work on A BROKEN MAGIC. I’m hoping to have the first draft done before Thanksgiving. After that it’s back to STILL WATER. I’ve also been asked to write short stories for two anthologies. I can’t say anything about one of them, but the other has a Kickstarter up right now to help fund it. You can go HERE to learn more. I really hope you’ll support it.

And that’s about it. Sorry for the long absence. Take care of yourself…