The new year hasn't quite started off the way that I would've wanted, but hopefully, it improves as the weeks go by. The "black" years have never been good for me anyhow. For starters, I had been looking for (and trying out) new laptops. I wanted something really small, thin, and light, but it had to be powerful enough to run a database. I found one! The AcerS7. I absolutely love it. The only downside is the "Delete" button that is at the bottom of the keyboard, two spaces to the right of the spacebar. I'd like to shoot the engineer who came up with that idea. I haven't lost part of an MS thus far, but I have deleted entire paragraphs of emails. I'm going to try putting some kind of textured sticker on the key to let my fingers know (teach them) that they shouldn't be on it. I've been typing for so long and up to 120wpm w/ fewer than 13 mistakes, that my fingers type sometimes, faster than my thoughts. They even make corrections on their own. (Or maybe, it just feels that way.)
In any case, the Acer S7 has my thumbs up. Most of the complaints about it in other reviews were for it's low amount of memory. I don't use a lot of memory, so that wasn't a big issue for me, and I purchased a mini XD card and stuck it in the slot. Wow. It's amazing to me how that tiny little thing could hold 32gigs of ram (or whatever.) I'm no techie by any means. So the laptop works great, but it's my internet that is bad, and there's nothing I can do about that right now.
On some good news that brings me a little more added work, I was promoted to the HWA Head Compiler for the Bram Stoker Awards ®. I also took on the "Recently Born of Horrific Minds" column for the monthly HWA Newsletter. I did get some help for the compiling, though. And that is most certainly good news. The column is fun writing up, and I enjoy working with Kathy Ptacek and Erinn Kemp (the columnists for "The Classifieds" and "Fiendish Endeavors." You can find out more and how to advertise and receive the monthly newsletter here: http://www.horror.org/
I also received an acceptance letter to the International Thrillers Writers as an active member. Find out more about this organization here: http://thrillerwriters.org/
My novella, East End Girls, is now available for preorder. http://journal-store.com/fiction/only-the-thunder-knows-east-end-girls/ Thanks to Gene O'Neill and Chris Marrs, Gord Rollo teamed up with me to do a "Double Down" book for JournalStone Publishing. They're supposed to be like the old "Ace Doubles" flip books. It was a lot of fun to write. We both decided on historical horror tales while Gord was here in Las Vegas for KillerCon last year. So great to see it all fall into place.
Then there was some really sad news this month with the passing of James Herbert, David B. Silva, and Rick Hautala. Please if you can, make donations to their families or even just buy their books to keep their legacies going.