Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Time...never enough

Yes, like so many others, I've been lax about updating the blog. It seems with Facebook's immediacy, that it's tough to maintain the blog. It's been a hectic summer and even though I don't "work" during the summer (I take it off from teaching college Biology), it seems like summer is already over...which it is as in just a couple of weeks, my classes resume. That's part of the busy-ness that's tying me up. Some of the classes are using new textbooks and that's always a challenge in re-tooling the existing lectures to fit into the new text and redoing the powerpoint lectures to match up with the text. Plus, the lectures are updated every semester. Biology, and oddly enough, especially for my Evolution class, things are changing so fast that it is hard to keep up. Further compounding the problems is that my computer died. The motherboard went so at least I could pull off the files from my hard drive. But I lost all the programs and had to re-install a lot and that meant buying updated versions. One of the most frustrating aspects was that Front Page web designer, which was discontinued by Microsoft with the 2003 version, is not able to work very well with Windows 7. I picked up Dreamweaver but the idea of redoing all the sites (there's about 7 and some are over 100 pages) in a new design doesn't sound too appealing. Plus there's a learning curve. I certainly am not a web designer. I figured out how to use Front Page and Photoshop as I went along but I'm thinking of taking a class on Dreamweaver. At some of the colleges I teach at, I can get free tuition. I've found through the years that there is a lot of basic stuff that I don't know in programs like Front Page and Photoshop as I never learn anything until I need to. Maybe with taking a class on Dreamweaver, I'll learn some of the shortcuts and obvious things that I was missing on previous programs. I also got involved with a new convention in the Detroit area called DETROIT FANFARE. I was asked to assist in helping to get some guests and in discussions with the organizers, I slowly became more immersed in it. The con is shaping up really well and the Guest of Honor is Stan Lee. Lots of other very talented folks will also be there. Of course, the writing aspect which I plan my summers around is going in unexpected directions which is actually probably the norm when I think about it. It's been slow going on the two novels I was working on as I was unexpectedly directed towards two all NEW Deadworld graphic novels. One will be in full color which is a first for Deadworld. I also finished up the Sherlock Holmes Reader: Murder at Moulin Rouge graphic novel and that one is now available and got most of the work done on another graphic novel, Subversives, which I should have more information about shortly. I did manage to sneak in a vacation with my wife on Lake Michigan and also had a chance to visit my oldest daughter in San Francisco. so it wasn't all work. So, if you're in the area, make sure you check out the convention and in the meantime, you should see some new websites that I do...I hope.


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