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World of Keiko 09/01/2015

We are now settling in to our new home. We drove to the new place last Tuesday after sleeping on the floor of our previous home the night before. Tuesday morning was made a little sketchy when hubby noticed that the bit of metal that held our exhaust to the back of the Corvette had decided to divorce the frame. So, hubby ended up buying some wire from Bunnings in Hervey Bay and got me to hold up the now called exhaust into place while he tied it to some convenient parts of the frame. It is temporary, obviously, but it held up quite well for our seven and a half hour drive. Note that the state government is also having lots of work done on the Bruce Highway. We can see the road from our place, which mainly consists of large trucks.
We arrived to a home that we’d been lucky to see the side of in a photo of another place. Nice enclosed verandas, but some odd choices for the two bedrooms. The area under the place is low, which means the we can park the Corvette there but not the Jimny. Given that the Jimny will arrive on a truck in a couple of days, we will have to leave some of our shopping until after. This will hopefully include a trip to one of the three Bunnings in Mackay. Yes, I do like Bunnings. For folks in the USA, Bunnings is quite similar to Home Depot. We don’t live too far from a nice beach. We can see the mountains from our back steps, and there is a quaint river with abundant bird life running directly behind our house. Hubby informed me yesterday from crocodiles have been seen along the stretch over the years, but I am not going to poke around what is a steep hill in order to catch a glimpse at a rather neat looking reptile that I can more easily watch videos of on Youtube.
We drove to Mackay on Friday to get an idea of what the place is like and went for our pre-planned lunch at Sizzler. Nice place, though the trip was a little warm. Sure glad that we were thoughtful enough to put on sunscreen before the drive there with the top down. Mackay turns out to be bigger than Hervey Bay, with better shops as well. The problem is the drive, which is around 75 minutes.
Nearby shopping consists of a nice Woolworths in Sarina, with some decent fast food places, a Reject Shop and a Target Country nearby. We drove there the first night for supplies and grabbed some food from Subway on the way out. There are some small communities in between, but these predominantly consist of corner stores, one pub and some sort of mechanic workshop. The two latter are to cover the local cane and cattle farmers.

I went for my first walk yesterday, a blistering-inducing 9.2km. A large portion of the walk to the beach was beside cane fields in various stages of harvest. Not as picturesque as in Hervey Bay, but not terrible given that sweet smell. I also made the acquaintance of numerous birds along the way, including a couple of (what I believe to be) Blue Cranes that were hunting in a recently harvested cane field. Those suckers were nearly as big as me, with intimidating wingspans.

How is the internet here? It is quicker than back in Hervey Bay, though we’ve had a few hiccups since arriving last Tuesday, since as an outage today and some bandwidth issues on Tuesday night. We’ve also had at least one blackout as well, likely something that the electricity company has been attempting to address during recent maintenance sessions.
In lieu of the internet situation, hubby and I are sorted as far as gaming is concerned. I am looking forward to getting stuck in to writing and study after we are a bit more settled.


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World of Keiko 08/22/2015

It has been a little over a month since my last update and things have progressed. We’ll be moving into our new place next Monday and should be settling in by this time next week. Moving is a pain in the butt, but the move will be a step in a position direction. Both trucks arrive Monday, with the main stuff arriving on Wednesday and the Jimny being delivered on the 3rd of September. It is a little annoying, but we at least have the Corvette and potentially hubby’s work car.
For those interested, our internet service is point-to-point wireless via the NBN. It is supposed to be quick, but we’ll have to wait and see how reliable it is when we arrive in the new place. Regardless, one would think that it will be better than the crappy DSL connection that we have in Hervey Bay. The infrastructure in the Bay is highly taxed and is not likely to be upgraded anytime soon.

I formatted and reinstalled Windows a few weeks ago. My machine is running nicely, and I am trying to avoid habits that led to the computer getting to such a poor state in the first place. I don’t want to fall into bad habits again. That being said, it is not feasible to be guarded all of the time. I suppose that we will have to see how we go.
As for Windows 10, hubby and I will be upgrading after we’ve settled into the new place. It looks sweet, though I still have a few questions about what will happen should I need to reinstall my OS again after the 12 months are up. On a good note, Microsoft has created some courses over at MVA to make the transition easier.

As far as things that I’ve learnt are concerned, I highly recommend folks also assaulting one’s social networking contacts with great prejudice in order to free up time for meaningful discussions and creative endeavors rather than be bombarded with nonsense and sales pitches. Also note that just because you have unfollowed somebody on twitter, you may still have somebody’s feed integrated with lists, hence I would recommend dealing with and keeping your lists neat and tidy. Also, it is not a bad thing to be discerning about which sites that you visit as seemingly mundane sites may expose your computer to security breaches.

I haven’t spent much time playing computer games of late, but I have reinstalled and played Diablo III multiplayer. Hubby and I made seasonal characters for season 3, playing enough content to get a pennant. Season 4 starts in a little over a week and we’ve both decided to work through all of the achievements necessary to get all of the season 4 bling, such as the pet. Yes, I like pets.It looks like hubby might give Heroes of the Storm a run as well, something that I am stoked about.
I have been sure to install a bunch of offline steam games in preparation for potential internet issues in the new place. This includes several JRPGs that I’ve been meaning to play through for a while now, as well as some point+click and visual novels. Not much graphically, but these games at least offer a bit in the way of storyline and character development.

To the question of study, I will see how I feel after the move. I am currently inclined to do self-paced courses rather than those restricted by intake. One of those courses is on canine cognition, something that is rather fascinating to me.

Anyway, I have to start our last pen and paper RPG session (Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition) in the house in a tick. I may just get to play my Aarakocra Monk secondary character.


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Pimp a Patreon: Godless in Dixie

Neil Carter Online: Facebook, Twitter, Patreon, Patheos

In this second installment of Pimp a Patreon, we are taking a look at Neil Carter’s Godless in Dixie patreon. As some of you are already aware, I am an atheist. Though I won’t be focusing much on this aspect of my life in this blog, I feel that it is important for atheists living in fundamentalist religious areas to get the support that they need. Whilst Neil’s patheos blog posts do a great job of offering some insight into the life of an Atheist living in Mississippi, there is still some ways in which he’d like to contribute further. I highly recommend that folks check out the Patreon and his other manifestations online to see if you’d like to contribute to the cause. Even if you don’t end up offering financial support, you’ll likely find his blog posts to be thought-provoking and relevant.


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Changes to Social Networking

A few days ago, I made a major decision about how I use social networking. It was a difficult decision, but a decision that I’ve been considering for several months. This requires me to unfriend and unfollow a bunch of people in order to free up time for personal projects. It is in no way about angst or some crazy political agenda. It is not about my atheism either. It really is about making better use of my time.

I will not be unfollowing family and folks that I have actually met. I will primarily stick with only a few writers, podcasters, musicians, artists and educators that I have regular contact with. I will not be continuing contact with folks that post nonsense, hate and hypocrisy because that is exhausting. I am tired of seeing material that can easily be debunked, of which I have noted some repeat offenders in recent months. I really can make better use of my time and I doubt that the folks that are affected want to see my lengthy posts anyway. This obviously includes pages for journalistic websites and blogs. As for religious stuff, I doubt that there will be any major issue given that most of my theist friends don’t post the sort of rubbish that that I am referring to.

I feel a little guilty about this change but it can be a real pain going through lengthy feeds. I have made a start on Facebook but will hopefully start work on twitter contacts soon. It will take a bit of time to make a lot more time for myself in the long-term. I am looking to have at least a first draft of a fantasy novel finished by the end of the year.


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Pimp a Patreon: Chris A Moody

Chris Online: Official WebsitePatreon Page, Steampod

In the first in a series of posts featuring promising and worthwhile Patreon pages, we are taking a look at that of long-time writing buddy and podcaster extraordinaire, Chris A Moody. Chris has been writing and podcasting for a while now and has shown himself to be driven to create unique stories. His Patreon page is a way to further finance his speculative fiction writing endeavors. He’s posted samples of his writing on the Patreon page. I highly recommend that you guys visit and read the samples to see if you’d like to help finance his dream.


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Introducing Herb Q Kendrick

Name: Herb Q Kendrick
Herb Online: Right Moods, Right Moods @Twitter, Right Moods @FacebookHerb Q @Youtube 

 I first become acquainted with Herb Q Kendrick on Facebook several years ago, back when he was living in Tokyo. At the time, he was performing comedy and music at various clubs, and also taught English to Japanese students. He produced a couple of podcasts on the side, one of which discussed Japanese snacks. He did voice work that included Romanov Higa ‘s CATBLUE: Dynamite [clip] [summary] and some voice acting for the English version of Kenta Fukasaku’s Battle Royale 2 Director’s Cut. I would find out later that he was also a fiction writer and more recently decided to focus on drawing. Whether he is working on an oil rig, chef, singing, writing or drawing, Herb is a highly motivated, talented dude.

Herb Q rocking a Marvel t-shirt

Herb Q rocking a Marvel t-shirt

Herb’s new project is Right Moods, a website that is home to his limited edition digital artworks. The work ranges in style from scenes inspired by the various cultures of Africa to the other side of the world in Japan. You’ll also find some other works that don’t fit into either but you’ll note that rich use of reds and blues throughout his entire catalogue. I seriously recommend that you guys check out the website and consider purchasing a piece.

I also recommend folks check out Herb’s Youtube channel. Soon after returning to the USA, he reunited with some musicians that he played with before he moved to Tokyo. Fatjoy band is a group from Greensboro, NC that performs covers of funk, R&B and soul. You’ll find a bunch of their performances posted on the channel along with some other material on the channel.


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World of Keiko 07/05/2015

Its been a few weeks since my last post. Stuff has progressed since the last update, but I will wait until hubby and I have told our families some stuff before letting you guys in on those details. Suffice to say, it is good news.

I have been playing some Marvel Heroes, but I was distracted waiting to hear back about hubby’s job applications. In spite of this, I have managed to get all but 5 of my toons over level 30. I still need to get Black Panther, Gambit, Jean Grey, Spider-Man and Storm to the point where they give at least one synergy. As for collecting heroes, I still have a large grouping of characters that I still haven’t unlocked.

I also removed all intake-based enrollments in order to make time for writing and editing. Assignment deadlines were becoming more unmanageable over time. Study was always meant to help with other aspects of my life but it began to take over. Given that my first love is storytelling, I needed to make writing a priority again.

I am back to walking the 7.5 km circuit. It is still early day and I am not confident enough with the strength of my ankle to do running. It doesn’t help having those extra pounds either, but I will get there. I just need to develop that habit because sporadic bursts of exercises do not allow for consistent improvement.

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