Thursday, July 12, 2007

E-Books, Harry Potter, Boba Fett ...

Update ... Dave AItel at has offered to host the .pdf's -- are there other formats people would like?

I'm going to start with "A Moment in Time," and the pilot for "All Possible Worlds," including probably the short pitch for it. They're set in the same universe and concern the same events, sort of. Then I'll start moving out some of the short fiction and essays, and then the novels -- taking Steve Perry's advice and sending Quietvision a registered mail referencing the email John Schaeffer sent me. As soon as I get the signature receipt back I'll start posting the novels.

Over the last year, roughly, I've written a long outline of the James Camber material -- the mystery/crime stuff, and the "All Possible Worlds" pilot and outline. I'm not posting the outline; if I end up doing nothing with the script, I'm going to convert Moment & APW into one long, epic novel -- the outline kills, trust me.

One of the minor characters in the James Camber novels is FatSam, the world's greatest hacker. He's married and has 5 kids and wears an eyepatch ... so he was easy to write. I've got pieces of a novel about him and I'm not going to bother PDFing them, but I will post some pieces of the novel called "Conversations With Connor." It's just stuff I've written down after talking to him.


Nine more days until Deathly Hallows ....

We saw Order of the Phoenix last night. A lot of fun and a pretty good movie -- it suffers as all the Potter movies have from a painful faithfulness to the novels, but that's probably a wise decision by the filmmakers -- my daughters dissected every deviation at dinner after the movie was over.

It was my first time at an Imax 3D movie -- only the last section, where Harry and the others fight Voldemort, is 3D, and aside from that bit the experience is striking, substantially better than a standard movie theater. The 3D ... I actually have peripheral vision in my right eye, so I took my patch off and wore the 3D glasses long enough to give myself some dreadful eye strain -- but the 3D effect wasn't bad, what I could make out of it. My kids were impressed, anyway. With the patch and 3D glasses on, there was no noticeable 3D effect (except you could see the camera work had been staged for the effect) ... but I did have to wear the glasses to make the ghosting double-image effect go away. That was an odd experience -- my brain's gotten good at dealing with double images, it's the principal symptom I have when I'm not wearing my patch, and it kept trying really hard to make that blurred 3D image resolve out. I could feel circuitry back in there buzzing away trying to do something it was accustomed to doing, with no result ... really odd feeling.

The theater was full of young people in Hogwarts uniforms. FWIW, they looked better than people who dress for Star Wars.

As we were arriving home, Connor was dead asleep in the middle seat of the Expedition. As we got out of the car, Alex said repeatedly, "Dan, Harry Potter. Harry Potter....Harry Potter?" Turned out she was saying "Carry Connor." I don't think I have hearing problems ...


I've been interviewed by -- just exchange of email. I'll let you know when the interview goes up -- I'm not sure if they're going to want to continue it from the first exchange, or if we're done.


Trask said...

Other formats? I've always appreciated that Baen offered .rtf as one of their formats, I vastly prefer it over .pdf files. It lets me set up the font and page width exactly as I like it, turning a chore (reading a .pdf) into something almost as good as the rather dogged-eared dead-tree format sitting on the shelves downstairs.

Either way, it will be nice to have an e-copy for when (not if) I lose the hardcopies. Life is that way.

Dan Moran said...

Trask -- RTF it is. I have about 50 novels on my handheld converted to RTF. (Travis McGee.) I read them on my handheld at night after the lights go out....pocket Word is a useless app otherwise, but it does display RTF files well.

On a Microsoft device, Reader is still a piece of crap. Adobe Acrobat doesn't crash the way Reader does, but it displays everything in a really dreadful font ... so I've defaulted on RTF as a good format, for much the same reasons you have.

Sean Fagan said...

Interestingly, due to Stross' recommendation, I just bought a Nokia 770 "Internet Tablet," partially to use as an e-book reader. It should arrive tomorrow, so I can try it with any rtf you have handy (hint, hint 8-)).

I'm still waiting for a real e-ink e-book, though. Something the size of a paperback would be fine.

JTHeyman said...

Dan wrote:

"Nine more days until Deathly Hallows ...."

Ah, but there are only 5 more days until The Big Crunch ... unless you've caused enough "events of significant divergence" to prevent it.


Wow ... when I first read The Armageddon Blues, 17 July 2007 seemed so far away. Now, it's almost here.

Assuming we survive, I'm looking forward to reading more of your fiction again.

Dan Moran said...

I got a Dell Axim x51v to do some handheld development work on for a client last year -- they didn't pay my last invoice because they were going out of business, so I kept the handheld, which was nearly a fair trade. It's a nice piece of hardware -- 640x480 screen, stowaway keyboard, 8GB memory card -- all under a pound. You can browse the internet on it very credibly (though it is the only computing device I've ever owned where the internet connection was much too fast for the device...when connected to the wireless network at home, the device downloads pages and then has to sit and think before it can render them.)

It reminds me of developing back in the IBM PC days -- it has very limited resources and you have to work around it. Modern hardware rarely runs out of a resource, except disk space, and even that you have to really work at -- this is a tighter environment, and programming in it is a little more enjoyable as a direct result. That's probably a personality flaw on my end -- like the guys who enjoy building boats in bottles, I suppose. What, it wasn't hard enough for you on the table top?

In any event, I've ended up mostly using it to read -- text, internet, emails -- after going to bed. The screen is good enough, and it doesn't bother my wife at night the way a reading light does.

-- JT Heyman -- I'm not dreading 17 July as much as I'm dreading 2018, when the Unification Wars are in full swing.