paganpaul: (Default)
As I walked to work this morning:
Morning view


Apr. 22nd, 2012 12:50 pm
paganpaul: (Writing)
 In almost a week I wrote over 32000 words in 15 chapters for a new story. When I don't write, I dream of it.

Astrophysics, Sci fi, paranormal stuff, aliens, stuff flying through space, and a complicated unorthodox romance. Just to make things easy on myself. I did find a picture which seems perfect for the book cover though.

Might have to add something to it once I bought it, but this feels very good already.
paganpaul: (Default)
 Okay... out on a limb now. Is there someone here who can speak and read Welsh? I need a translation for "Nothing happens without a reason". Google Translate came up with "Nid oes dim yn digwydd heb reswm". Is that somewhat correct?
paganpaul: (Default)
 It sounds simple. I think it is. And it is going to happen.

Last week I was away from home, off to Bristol for 5 days. I had close to no internet access there (did not want to pay €20/day for hotel internet, nor €10/MB for phone 3G, I know I am a cheap skate). And that was fine. Not all the time, but in general - it was fine. No facebook, no google+, no twitter, no journals, no nothing. All the time in the world for me. I read a lot, walked and talked with friends, did nothing, and it felt good.

After coming back home, the feeling of no internet was still there - it still is. And I have all the internet I can possibly want and need. So that makes the best of both worlds. Now, where does the simplification come in? It is in the chopping.

What I have now: 3 facebook accounts, a separate fb page, a google+ account and a page there, 4 twitter accounts, 2 journal accounts. Simple... but not really.

After the chopping some stuff will be gone. At least 1fb account goes, and Google+ goes.

Why? I gave up my volunteer work for an organisation because I had no more time for that. A lot of that time became sucked up by FB/G+/twitter etc. I had a Diaspora account for a while, that has already been eliminated.
The Google+ people will not like that. The people from the FB-to-be-dumped account will transfer to the normal FB account. Some people won't like that. Twitter? We'll see.

It really can be that simple. If people don't like it - I am sorry for them, but I like it, and these are my accounts. I do as I please. For they have to be there for my pleasure. It is, indeed, that simple.
paganpaul: (GreenMan)
Today I received an email from the lease company that finances my car. If I would please fill out a simple questionnaire.
Which I did, because I am cool like that.

The lease company has a number of their own service centres to take care of the cars in their fleet, and they want, of course, as many people there. Their questionnaire was about people considering using those facilities.

Until now I always take my car to the local Toyota dealer, as that is literally on the way to or from work. For a service I drop it off, pick up the loaner, and repeat that trick the next day.

A lease service centre is about 30km away from home, and about (at this moment) 40km from where I work. Their service goes so far, that they will send someone over to me with a loaner car, who then picks up my car. I can use the loaner until my own car is returned to me, after which their driver takes their car back to the centre. Isn't that a fantastic service? And I don't even have to pay for the use of the loaner, that is all free!

I don't use their service. I probably never will, unless perhaps they open up shop next door.

Look at it: someone drives 30km (20 miles) to bring me a car. They drive those 30km back. And the next day another 30 in mine, and 30 in theirs. Provided they swap at my home. Otherwise it would be 4x40km. That is 120km to 160km of driving, of fuel, of exhaust, and of environment pollution for which I have to do absolutely nothing. No, thanks. I'll gladly pay for the loaner car and save the world at least 120km of driving exhaust. I'll gladly support a smaller local business to keep their shop open, where I know the people and am treated as almost a friend. And if that costs me some extra money - fine.


Feb. 23rd, 2012 07:05 pm
paganpaul: (Default)
 All my Hilda books that have so far been published as e-books are now available in print too!!

I'm crazy! (And I love it!) Here are the last 3 proofs that came in today:

paganpaul: (Default)
Today I had to wear my gloves going to work.
We're having somewhat of a wintery spell here, with night temperatures below zero C/32F (Damn, I am so kind to convert all our silly celsius to the far more comprehensible fahrenheit!)
This morning the outside temperature is -9C, for you imperialists that is 16F.
There is a bit of wind though, 20KM/hour (14MPH or so), so the windchill factor makes that -16C / 3F.

Before I drove off, I put on my gloves. The steering wheel of my car was just too cold to handle.
paganpaul: (Avatar)
The movie.
It was on tv here last Thursday. I did not watch it. It was broadcast on a station that is famous for making movies almost twice as long because of the insane amount of advertisement they stick in them. I can do Avatar without ads just fine. Ask my bluray disc. :)

Na'vi & Avatar
I do a lot with it.
  • speak it
  • teach it
  • send out a Na'vi word a day on twitter
  • active in the Lexical Expansion Project, to add new words
  • write a blog in it
  • translate the dictionary into Dutch
  • help a few people in Germany in translating their site into Dutch (it is a Na'vi learning site)
  • have a tattoo based on Avatar
  • will have a 2nd tattoo based on Avatar
  • sometimes say or write a Na'vi word without noticing (sometimes with very entertaining results!)
Still waiting on the delivery of my ikran though...


Jan. 24th, 2012 06:07 pm
paganpaul: (Writing)
Ok. Have to vent. This writing and book-publishing is getting scarily serious now.
In about 2.5 years I wrote 8 Hilda books and 3 steampunk books. I have a download-amount of the free books that is downright indecent (currently it stands a few over 135.000).
Hilda 8 has been *sold* over 70 times since January 5th of this year.
And since a week people are sending me e-mails, asking when Hilda 8 will be available in .

Yes, I am thrilled. Yes, I am happy and amazed and grateful. But I am also feeling weird. I never planned this. (But now it's happening and I don't want to let it go!)
paganpaul: (Writing)
If you care to see them, they are here.

paganpaul: (Writing)
I have written a small 'report' on the evening where I was, for the first time in my life, invited to read something of my own work.

This is the first part:

The environment
The dinner was held in a wonderful ambiance. A nice building in an area that is not very crowded, owned by friendly people who try to make the atmosphere inside as gentle and welcoming as possible. And they succeeded in that. The dinner was held in a beautiful restaurant where about 25 people were seated.

The participants
During the evening, music was played by a very nice group of young musicians who go by the name of Cathain. They played folk music from Ireland, Hungary and many other countries.

There were two other authors present that evening. One was my friend Christian Turk, who is a cartoonist and author of a wonderful book called Faun. It was from that book that he read a story. The second author was Eire Rautenberg, who read a number of very interesting poems from one of her latest publications. And then there was yours truly, who read chapter 13 and 14 from Snow White Revisited. I had reworked those chapters into German for the evening.

If you care to read more, hop on over to the full post.
paganpaul: (Default)
This evening I am going to Dortmund in Germany, where I have been invited, together with other people in the artistic craft, to be present at a 'magical dinner'. There will be other people, like musicians and poets, and everyone will show, recite or perform some of their art.

I was asked to read one or two chapters from one of the Hilda books, and of course I was flattered to be invited. As I have mentioned before on this blog, I selected two chapters that are rather easy to step into (they are from Snow White Revisited) and reworked those into German, because not I cannot expect everyone to be proficient in English.

It will be an interesting evening, I am convinced of that. If anything noteworthy passes, I shall of course share this with you.

Have a wonderful weekend!
paganpaul: (Default)
Yes, I am certain I am doing that now. The age of what? Perhaps it is "computers", perhaps it's "old", I am not sticking a label on it.

Fact is that this morning I ordered special glasses for reading and computerscreen work. My multifocals are making it too hard to properly read the screen (have to bend my head back too much), and taking them off only works for one eye, so that is also not a viable option.

As long as there's a fix for it in this way, I'm fine with it.

And once the laundry stops laundring, I'll be mostly set for the arrival of the new year too.

I hope everyone is having a good moment of the day, and for what it is worth, I wish you all a wonderful start of the new year, may the best of 2011 be the worst of 2012 for you.

Blessed be.
God be with you.
Eywa ngahu.
paganpaul: (huis)
Yesterday I visited Dad again. I had asked if it is okay with him if I take some pictures of his new apartment, to show you all. He was fine with that, so here we go.

A view of the "inhouse balcony" which we turned into Dad's computer corner. He has the laptop playing music most of the time. I put up a big screen for him, so old eyes can see properly.

The entrance, and to the left the doors to the bedroom (l) and bathroom (r). The black couch is new. As you may be able to see, there is a small christmas tree on the cabinet too.

The comfy corner, with the black couch, Dad's recliner chair (which also can help him get up), and the TV.

The kitchen. Quite a big one, and convenient.

View of the room and a bit out of the window.

Not bad, eh?


Nov. 27th, 2011 11:26 am
paganpaul: (Writing)
It is done.
I finished the story today, it ended up 101269 words, as counted by the nanowrimo count-bot.

If you are interested in a Blade Runner-like environment, the start of the story is on my site.

The first 30 chapters are there, unedited, unspellchecked, so if you find errors, you found them. ;-) I'll try to add a chapter a day, until all 46 are online.
paganpaul: (Writing)
It happened. I have a printed copy of Hilda's first story.

The cover in my hand:

The inside, the start of chapter 4:

I am so psyched about it!!

It's for sale (at cost price) here, on I am still looking into getting it to, but that is a bit more work.

paganpaul: (Writing)
that the books are in!

George R.R. Martin had a few hard-covers of a book of the Song of Fire and Ice series for sale. Hardcovers in Dutch, as it is a big book it comes in 2 volumes. Not very main stream I think. A friend tipped me off on them, as I had missed that post on his weblog.

I mailed his assistant Ty, bought a set, and today they arrived. :-)

The 2 books

Inscription 1

Inscription 2
paganpaul: (Default)
Swan in the pond near work

A few days ago I walked to my car, and one of the two swans in the pond came to say hello. :-)

Swan comes to say hello
paganpaul: (Rare mensen)
From Thomas Cook Holidays - listing some of their guests’ complaints...

1. "I think it should be explained in the brochure that the local store does not sell proper biscuits like custard-creams or ginger-nuts."

2. "It's lazy of the local shopkeepers to close in the afternoons. I often needed to buy things during 'siesta' time - this should be banned."

3. "On my holiday to Goa in India, I was disgusted to find that almost every restaurant served curry. I don't like spicy food at all."

4. "We booked an excursion to a water park but no-one told us we had to bring our swimming costumes and towels."

5. A tourist at a top African game lodge over looking a water hole, who spotted a visibly aroused elephant, complained that the sight of this rampant beast ruined his honeymoon by making him feel "inadequate".

6. A woman threatened to call police after claiming that she'd been locked in by staff. In fact, she had mistaken the "Do not disturb" sign on the back of the door as a warning to remain in the room.

7. "The beach was too sandy."

8. "We found the sand was not like the sand in the brochure. Your brochure shows the sand as yellow but it was white."

9. A guest at a Novotel in Australia complained his soup was too thick and strong. He was inadvertently slurping the gravy at the time.

10. "Topless sunbathing on the beach should be banned. The holiday was ruined as my husband spent all day looking at other women."

11. "We bought' Ray-Ban' sunglasses for five Euros (£3.50) from a street trader, only to find out they were fake."

12. "No-one told us there would be fish in the sea. The children were startled."

13. "There was no egg slicer in the apartment."

14. "We went on holiday to Spain and had a problem with the taxi drivers as they were all Spanish."

15. "The roads were uneven."

16. "It took us nine hours to fly home from Jamaica to England, but it only took the Americans three hours to get home."

17. "I compared the size of our one-bedroom apartment to our friends' three-bedroom apartment and ours was significantly smaller."

18. "The brochure stated: 'No hairdressers at the accommodation'. We're trainee hairdressers - will we be OK staying there?"

19. "There are too many Spanish people. The receptionist speaks Spanish. The food is Spanish. Too many foreigners '- now live abroad'."

20.. "We had to queue outside with no air conditioning."

21.. "It is your duty as a tour operator to advise us of noisy or unruly guests before we travel."

22. "I was bitten by a mosquito - no-one said they could bite."

23. "My fiancé and I booked a twin-bedded room but we were placed in a double-bedded room. We now hold you responsible for the fact that I find myself pregnant. This would not have happened if you had put us in the room that we booked."

They walk amongst us and they vote.

Be afraid!

Be very afraid!


Nov. 11th, 2011 08:36 am
paganpaul: (Default)
Dad's moving
It is all looking well. we went to see his new place last week Friday afternoon. It is really brand new, still unfinished, but very nice.

Dad's new place 2
This is the kitchen area, and on the left side is the small hallway to the central corridor.

Dad's new place 1
This compartment is a small inhouse conservatory, and the doors go to the bedroom and the bathroom.

Everything is set for moving on December 6th, I have his new phone number, so we can start doing something about sending cards to family and friends with his new address etc.

Yes. Of course.

I have been asked to assist in merging two systems. The accountant I work at now is merging with another one. They use the same software, but databases and such need to be combined. That is not something you just do, and they discovered by now that I know a trick or two. hehehe

Na'vi teaching
I think I am doing this right:

Ma karyu Pawl,

Thank you again for the homework. I appreciate your taking the time to work with me. I am unsure about the transitive-intransitive. I know I must have gotten a few of the sentences incorrect as I did not use "ur" or "ru" in any of them. Perhaps I may need a few more examples. I promise to take better notes.

I must tell you, your English is impeccable! I have had no trouble understanding you, nor you, me. Please let me know if I'm speaking too quickly though. Sometimes I do, and then my own parents have a hard time understanding me, LOL!

I'm loving my Na'vi lessons, thank you SO much.

If you can understand David Tennant as the Doctor, you are not easily thrown by someone who speaks fast. *big grin*.

Well, back to work. It's Friday. Roll on, pseudo-Saturday!

Storm of Swords
I bought a copy of George R.R. Martin's book Storm of Swords. It is a two-book hardcover version in Dutch. I can't believe it is a very wide-spread issue, and I am buying it directly from him. (Thanks Majkia for warning me about it!)


What this is? This is the cover of the first book of Hilda the Wicked Witch. The cover of the first PRINTED book of Hilda the Wicked Witch.

Last week I had a very enjoyable conversation with a friend, over dinner. Inevitably writing and books were part of the conversation. She told me that she would really love to read about Hilda’s adventures, but she is not the type for electronic reading. I admitted that I had attempted to get a paper version of Hilda’s first done, but all these attempts stranded in frustration and other unpalatable things. So I decided to give this publishing idea another go.

The proof copy is by now on its way to me...

Progress of this will be available readily at my author website. ;-)

Have a good weekend!!

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