I return!

Hello everyone.  I’ve been visiting family and recovering from travel for the past two weeks, but I’m ready to resume my regular schedule.  I have a few thoughts to share with you today (disparate rather than cohesive), but first I have some exciting news: I have been accepted into Simmons’ MFA in Writing for Children (and Young Adults, but that’s not mentioned in the title).  I think I mentioned this before, since I used the elements of Last Days of Loneliness that I shared here as part of my writing sample for the application.  If you haven’t read those, have a gander at parts 1, 2, and 3.  I’m not sure what this will mean for my posts in the future (I’ll start classes in January), and it may result in a slight change in content or length.  On the other hand, I might just start posting things that I write for my classes, so that you can read them too.  No worries, I’m sure I’ll burn that bridge when I come to it, thus perpetuating my deliberate misuse of common phrases.

In case you haven’t been keeping up with cool science news, reality has continued to establish the premises of the setting I created for Alison McKenzie‘s flash fiction contest (my entry is here, and some additional tooling around with the setting can be found here).  Specifically, we now have drugs (for rats) that allow for nerves to reestablish themselves (or communicate?) through intervening scar tissue.  It looks like an acceptable approximation to human nerve regeneration is en route.  This comes on top of the already existing heart-in-a-box organ preservation technology, so, you know, we’re really not that far from having chop-shops after all.  Goodness, I hope that’s false, chop-shops are scary.

As is often the way of long trips, I consumed a good deal of media while I was gone.  I finally saw Edge of Tomorrow and In Bruges, I showed Pacific Rim to someone who’d never seen it before, and I watched too many movies on planes (including A Fault in Our Stars, which I think merits some attention here, and Epic, which didn’t particularly impress me).  I read some books too, though mostly I spent time with my lovely family, enjoyed playing with my nephews, and played lots of games.

At some point I’ll have to tell you all about the card games Hanabi and Pairs, but first I should mention that I ran the opening to my new campaign for my brothers; it went over excellently, despite me leaving all my campaign notes at home, and the game ended with one of my brothers in tears after a particularly emotional scene.  His character, a paladin on the edge of death, had a moment with his god that deeply effected my brother.  I was very happy with the final result, though I was a little anxious beforehand because we all thought his character had died for at least a few minutes (and my brother wasn’t especially happy about that).  Before you ask, no, I didn’t handwave him back to life: he finally remembered he had “inspiration” (a D&D 5th ed. mechanic that allows you to roll twice and take the better of the two rolls), and used it to evade his otherwise-final death.

Ok, now that I’ve set myself a large number of reviews to share with you, I’m going to leave it here for today.  Next Monday I’ll be back to the regular schedule, and I’ll probably start by talking about one of the things I’ve mentioned here today.  Until then, I hope you’re all doing well and enjoying your early December!

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