10/08/00: Hoo boy ... I know, I know, it's been a while. I'm sorry for that, but real life has been a little complicated lately. Ah, but there's good news -- for two weeks of this time I was on vacation, visiting my family, and while I was there (in fact, the main reason I was there) my sister gave birth to her third child, a healthy baby boy, Benjamin! A rather strapping young lad at 9 pounds 5 ounces, he also seems the introspective type, content to look around quietly and just take everything in -- when not eating or sleeping, of course. The entire family is doing quite well, and I love them all dearly.
Otherwise, I've simply been slammed under with work. Roughly from August through early November is the busiest time of year for me, and since I'm a writer and editor by profession, it's sometimes hard to come home, work for a couple of hours or more, then keep sitting there just to keep working on my hobby.
OK, enough excuses. I do finally have an update, so check out Chapter Three of "Straight Through the Heart," in which things are getting ... interesting. Note that, as usual, I tinkered around with both Chapter One and, especially, the end of Chapter Two. Mostly, I decided the phrase "ex-Pinkerton" was a bit unwieldy, and substituted for most of them, although it's still appropriate in some contexts, so I left it in here and there. I also felt the exchange at the end of Chapter Two was a little weak, so I strengthened it up a bit and added a bit of foreshadowing as well.
Thank you so much for your patience. But then, you knew that sometimes it would be like this when you first saw my home page :-) Enjoy -- Bracer
8/21/2000: Sorry, no story updates tonight (come on, it's only been one day, and you are dealing with the Least Prolific Bard in the Xenaverse here), just correcting a goof. Someone was kind enough to point out I hadn't actually updated the "Last Update" notice both here and on the home page -- D'oh!
And YOWZA! A big perk got thrown my way yesterday, when Lunacy reviewed both "One Nation" and "Straight Through the Heart," giving them both a HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION! So, I also took a few minutes to add links to both reviews on the Unfinished Stories page. Must be all that clean livin'...
8/20/2000: By popular demand, I've posted a pretty rough version of "Straight Through the Heart," Chapter Two. Although there are many parts of this I'm quite proud of, it sure took me a while -- tons and tons of dialog tend to do that. However, having gotten over this hump I think the rest is going to go a bit more smoothly. You should also know I made some minor tweaks to Chapter One, including a new disclaimer for Bad Language (just kinda felt I had to). Consider yourself duly warned.
Oh, and a minor spoiler for Chapter Two:
You have no idea how long it took me to track down some titles of children's books published before 1889! The sacrifices I make for art ;-) However, on a related note I also found an extremely detailed map of the Dakotas dating from that same year, which has helped tremendously.
8/6/2000: OK, I replaced all the headers with some snazzier-looking graphics, and made a few other minor HTML tweaks. It still doesn't look quite like I want it yet, but it's getting there ;-)
Now then, I also uploaded Chapter Two of "One Nation" -- ahh, the plot thickens. I admit I'm really not at all happy with X&G's "pillow talk" at the end, but after pounding my head against it for two days, I finally decided enough was enough and to move on. And wouldn't you know it, having done so I've already made significant headway on Chapter Three. I'll just have to go back and fix Chapter Two later, after I let it sit and get cold for a while. You might also notice I did some tweaking on Chapter One. Nothing major, but I added a few descriptive bits, and fixed a few punctuation and dialog flow thingies.
Also, while I'm at it, I can't believe my hit counter is already over 1100 after only half a week and there not being much here. Thanks to everyone who stopped by, and especially those of you who took the time to send me some feedback.
8/2/2000: Hello and welcome to my small (and I mean tiny) corner of the Xenaverse. Thereís not a lot here yet, just a couple of old stories and the humble beginnings of a couple of new ones, but hopefully that will change. Real life keeps me pretty busy, so I have no idea how frequent these updates will be, but maybe just knowing that Iíve put this out there will push me into finding more time to write. Meanwhile, thanks for visiting, have a look around, and enjoy yourself.