Happy New Years

I'm writing you all today from OS X for the first time in months. Also, I'm writing another journal entry in honor of the weekend-like quality that the holiday has, and I'm writing it right before I post it rather than in my usual bi/tri-monthly binge writing style. Very strange.

Just to comment on the experience of the new/old environment, I'm sort of distraught by how uncomfortable it feels I mean OS X is pretty, and it does a better job with the hardware than Ubuntu (more on this later) but I'm just not used to it any more, and even though I really like TextMate... meh. [1]

I rang in the new year by wrapping up a scene in the novel that had been nagging at me for several weeks. It's the longest single "chunk" of writing in the project thus far, and the oddest, but I like it a lot. It represents, I think, a number of developments for me as a writer. First it's a big plot twist, and it's action, two things that I've felt I've not been able to capture correctly thus far. I'm just over the 19k word mark, and the next scene promises to be fun. By my estimates this is about a third of the story, which feels about right in terms of the plot right now.

A lot of people seem to be writing blog posts and journal posts on their review of the past year and their thoughts for the future year. This year has had it's trials (the ongoing grandparental health issue; the not getting into graduate school take 2; the lack of knitting) and its high points (a new job that I adore, linux and a new academic direction, more writing, still being alive.) And I expect that the new year will have more of both: though certainly I'm working towards more high points and fewer trials.

My resolution last year was to keep a list of books and fiction that I read. I was pretty successful at this, though certainly I haven't figured out the hack to carve out time for me to read fiction in the sort of concerted way that I feel I need to be reading fiction. But I'll continue to keep the list, that's been fun.

This years resolution is more complex, I suppose, and I'm not going to spell it all out here. This year promises to hold a number of big changes: a move, some trips, more awesomeness in the job, some new big project, and so forth. If nothing else, I think my overall approach at the moment is to work on getting closure with old projects before starting with new projects. Seems like a plan. I'm not sure if that's a resolution though.

In any case, be warm (or cool) and well in the new year and I'll be back with our regularly scheduled programing very shortly.

[1]I've spent some time getting OS X set up on the macbook because I think I'm admitting that Ubuntu isn't right for this hardware. While it mostly does a pretty good job it falls apart in a couple of important places. The biggest issue is that the trackpad is supported poorly. It works, but I can't get it to turn down the sensitivity to a useable level--which is minor, because I can get it to turn off and I don't need it most of the time--but more importantly the suspend/hibernate/wake reliability is sub-usable. Mostly it works fine, but sometimes the mouse doesn't work, or clicks erratically, or responds to input erratically and restarting X doesn't work. I'm, at this point, blaming it on Ubuntu's hardware abstraction layer, and I've resolved to use OS X for a while and then I'll give Arch Linux a try. In the mean time... I have one working portable system (OS X) and a working desktop system, of course. So all is well in technology land.
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