EverQuest will be free to play in March

I don’t sit and watch the live feed on Facebook as much as I would like to because I have better things to do, but today I saw a friend comment on a post from EverQuest.  They are turning 13 years old in March and as a treat for us players, they are making it free to play.  Check out the article on the EverQuest Players website.

I had played EverQuest from 2002 until 2008 and loved that game so much.  It got old the last year that I played because I spent more time twiddling my thumbs since people were abandoning the game and I was left by myself.  I could have gone out to the zones and LFG’d, but it just wasn’t the same anymore, so I quit.

I have wanted to go back to the game but haven’t because I’ve been happy playing Lord of the Rings Online since that is free to play.  Now that EverQuest will be free to play, I will be able to go back.  Although I won’t be quitting LOTRO, I will just play both, obviously not at the same time but you know, I will split my time between the two.

I actually haven’t really had any time to play any games because I have been too busy trying to get my book ready to publish, so games really aren’t on my mind as much as I would like.  Knowing that I will be able to reactivate my account and have my Gnome Wizard at the ready whenever I am ready to play will make me happy.

Just like LOTRO, EverQuest won’t be totally 100% free to play, you will most likely have to buy points for buying in-game items just like in LOTRO, you just won’t have to pay a monthly fee.  Although, you could still pay a monthly fee if you are a silver member, but now you have a choice so you aren’t forced to pay even when you don’t play.  That is actually the reason I closed my account.  I had paid for 2 years and then a few months later I stopped playing.  I forced myself to get in the game to raid because I wanted to get my moneys worth for a year, then the second year I decided that I just wasn’t into it.  When my membership was up, I canceled.  If I had a choice to not pay but keep my account active I would have done that, and now I can.

So thank you Sony Online Entertainment for making EverQuest free to play in March 2012.  I can’t wait to start playing again.

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The Never Ending Book

Just when I thought my book was finally ready to be published, I read it again and found more mistakes and then have to start all over again.

I sent my book out to several people a few weeks ago and they sent me feedback with highlights and notes so that I will know what needed to be fixed.  Up until recently I thought my grammar was correct considering I used spell and grammar check “After The Deadline” which told me I was right.  Apparently not.

I went through the book correcting everything that was highlighted.  I did search and replace and fixed countless issues and read the book again to be sure I had it right.  Naturally I found more errors.  I fixed the new errors, but to be 1,000,000% sure that it is ready, I will have to read it yet one more time.

The more I read my book, the faster I get at reading it.  When I first began, it used to take me a week or more to read it, now it takes 2 days.  I guess the more you read the same story, the easier it gets.  Now if only I could read other books that fast, I would have a bigger library under my belt.

I will start reading it again tomorrow from the beginning and hope that I don’t have to make any more changes.  I feel that when I can read my entire book without opening the document file on the computer to fix something, that is when it’s finished.

I’m going to be blind by the time this book is done lol.  At least I’m learning better grammar which will help me be a better blogger.

My Book for the Kindle – Issue Solved

I mentioned yesterday that I had a few issues with my book on the Kindle.  There was a lot of strange code in the .epub file that was making it look funny.  I spent countless hours over the last couple of days trying to fix the issue and unfortunately those fixes removed 200 words from the book.  I found out last night that all I have to do is convert the book to .mobi format to publish to the Kindle, which I did and it is now perfect.

I have learned so much from writing this book, it’s amazing how horrible my English was before.  I mean, I never understood punctuation because I just let the spell check do all the work for me.  Apparently the spell and grammar checker that I have been using is crap because it told me that I was right when I was clearly wrong.  Unfortunately, that has made me question every blog post I have ever written.

As far as I am concerned, my book is finished, but I am going to go through it one last time to make 100% sure that it is before I publish it.  I want to say that I will publish it on February 1st 2012, but I don’t want to promise it.  I will write a post the day it is published though.

I want to go out to Hart Park and have Darrin take a picture of me for the About The Author page.  I thought about doing a joke picture of me sitting in robe wearing an Ascot and smoking from a pipe in front of a green screen to add a picture of a library with a big fireplace behind me, but I don’t have any of those things.  I think it would look more genuine if I had a real picture taken, and not in a studio where they would charge me $60 just for the digital copy for publication.

So that’s it, I can stop obsessing over formatting and get back to the real issue which is making sure it is ready to publish.  Updates coming soon…

My CR-48 Brick

In the middle of December of 2010, Google surprised me by sending me an email asking me if I wanted to test a laptop with the new Google Chrome operating system if I sent in bug reports.  Happily I accepted the task and received my free laptop 2 days later.  I was shocked that I actually got it and I did the happy dance.  It’s sometimes mistaken for the pee pee dance, but it was a happy one.  I have had a wonderful year testing out this wonderful toy, but sometimes good things have to come to an end because it’s a brick now.

Ok to clarify, the laptop isn’t broken, it just won’t stay online.  I have it connected through my WiFi network, but as soon as I try to type something, it loses the signal.  The only way to get it back is to reboot.  Rebooting used to help, but now it just won’t stay connected anymore.  It will stay connected for hours, but as soon as I try to type something, it goes offline.  I can watch videos on YouTube, I can browse people’s Facebook page, I can look at any website in the world, I just can’t type anything.

At first when this would happen I would switch over to Verizon 3G, but I only get 100MB free data every month and I have already used 50MB over the last few days every time I want to type something.  At this point it’s just a waste of electricity having it on because if I want to type something, I have to do it on the desktop.

I tried doing research to get it fixed.  I went to the help section and looked at boards and found out that this is happening to a lot of people.  Someone said that Google was in touch with him and sent him an email with a link to a website that has instructions on how to take the laptop apart to re-seat the wifi connection, but I’m afraid I might just make it worse.  I really don’t know if that is the problem because it never gets moved, so there is no reason for anything to be loose in there.  It stays on my desk in the same spot all the time.  I rarely if ever bring it to another room of the house, and when I do pick it up, it’s to dust.  And, it only goes offline when I try to type something, why would it stay online for hours at a time, but then shut off as soon as I try to type something if the problem is that the wifi connection is loose?  I don’t think they are related.

A few of the people say that it’s not a software glitch, that the hardware needs to be re-seated, but that does not seem to make sense in my case.  I think it’s a software glitch and the only thing I can do is wait for Google to put out a new update.  How long will that take?

I have cleared my browsing data, browsing history and emptied the cache.  Before that whenever I would move the mouse it would go offline, so now at least it stays online until I type something.  It has gotten a little better, but not by much.  I deleted the cookies, cleared saved passwords and autofill form data and I deleted all of my files because they were redundant anyway.  I most likely downloaded images for blog posts or to transfer to the micro SD card for my phone.  The remaining files that aren’t on my computer were transferred to a USB flash drive.

I will continue to do research on the matter because I really want my CR-48 back.  I have lived my whole life without it, but I don’t know if I can live without it now.  I know that’s sad, but it is such a cool thing.  For anyone who doesn’t have one, they don’t know how awesome it is so they don’t know what I mean, but trust me, if you had one you’d understand.

I posted on the Google help boards, so hopefully I will hear from someone who can help.  Will update on the matter.

My book is almost ready to publish, only one tiny issue left…

My book files came back to me a couple of days ago (two beta readers as I like to call them) with highlights of things for me to fix.  I have read my book at least 30 times and I was just getting so sick of reading it and they wanted to read it so I figured they could read it early, but I’d love to have bug reports.

So I went through the highlights which weren’t all that major.  I missed a few capitalizations and punctuation issues.  There were also a few words where I forgot to add a letter, like instead of writing the word “from” I wrote “for”, don’t ask why lol.

As I was getting the paper book put together with all of my corrections made, I noticed a little issue which turned out to be a major issue.  There were grey boxes where spaces were supposed to go.  It wasn’t everywhere, but it was annoying that there were so many.  I was able to delete them as I went, but that didn’t help because it was still messed up.

The paper book got put together and turned in to check for errors, which I’m happy to report weren’t any.  I converted the .odt file to epub and was going to publish to Amazon for the Kindle and Barnes & Noble for the Nook.  It looked great on the Nook, but the Kindle wasn’t doing so good.  Here is what I was seeing…

You see the top paragraph?  It’s not exactly a paragraph is it?  That was what happened because of the square boxes.  Also look at the other paragraphs, they weren’t indented, except for the last one.  I went into Sigil to look at the html code of the chapters and this is what I saw.

That is supposed to be a little paragraph.  Those <.span.> things were out of control.  That is what was causing the text to move down.  So the only way for this to work is to cut all that crap out.  I tried to do find and replace, but unfortunately each one of those lines has its own number so it’s not like I can replace all of them throughout the entire document, they have to be deleted one at a time.  ANNOYING!

I worked for 8 hours to get rid of them and then discovered that if I converted the file to .html, it got rid of all that.  So that was a waste of time, but it was a learning experience.

I fixed all of the capitalization and punctuation issues, but I have a feeling I am still missing something so I’m going to have to read the whole thing again.  It sucks but I don’t want to publish a book that isn’t right.

I said I would get it published by January 1st and here we are nearing February and it still isn’t ready to publish.  I don’t know how long it will take but I will get it out there eventually.

5-Hour Time Lapse – Red Lava Lamp

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0BuXTJBAD2w

I have loved lava lamps since I was a kid when my parents had one.  Since I saw it every day, the novelty wore off so I kind of took it for granted.  I never had one of my own until this Christmas when Darrin bought one for me.  We watch it every night because it is so mesmerizing, so I wanted to do a time-lapse video of it so I can see it at really high speed.  Oh yes, I am enjoying my new lava lamp.

The background by the way is a pillow case because my wall is plain white.  I probably should have bought a tie dye t-shirt to put up against the wall, but this was all I had.  I think it looks cool anyway.

Pre-Lit Christmas Tree Lights

Darrin bought a Christmas tree at Sears in 2007.  We never celebrated Christmas with a tree before that because it was Chips job was to decorate Trees every year at department stores, so he just didn’t like the thought of having to decorate trees anymore.  He didn’t think I would want to so we just never had a tree.  I was so happy that he bought this one because I just love to decorate it every year.  It was a tradition throughout my childhood to have a tree and I never got that as an adult until the last few years.

Unfortunately, when you buy a pre-lit tree, you have complications with the light sets.  This one light set in the front went out last year and I could never figure out how to fix it.  I tried pulling out the fuses and replacing them but that didn’t work.  I tried pulling out every light from the whole set, but that didn’t work.  I was at my wits end with this tree because it wasn’t just this T shape in the front, most of the lights in the back were out too.

I finally found the problem today.  The tree is still up because I didn’t want to take it down until I found the issue, and I did.  Here is the issue.  The first light in each light set has a white plastic … what are those things called?

The white one is a different shape from the green one, so you can’t just put the green one in it’s place; and the bulbs in the white ones are glued in.  I was afraid if I tried to pull the white one out, the bulb would break and cut my fingers.  I did eventually get it out though and was able to take the bulb from a green one and put it in its place and replace the bulb which lit the whole set back up.

I am down to 4 replacement bulbs and there are still at least 3 sets that are out so I’m going to fix them today.  I tried looking for these bulbs to buy a new replacement pack, but nobody has them.  It’s just my bad luck isn’t it?  I did find that they have them at NewEgg, but they are out of stock.  I clicked the “AUTO-NOTIFY” button and left a note saying “I need these in about 11 months LOL” so when they get them in, hopefully I can buy them for $14.99.  I don’t need the set, just the bulbs.  If I can find the replacement bulbs at the hardware store in a little pack of like 10 or 20 then I’ll buy that.  I don’t care how I get the bulbs, I just want them because they don’t last very long; I have already gone through the entire package of replacement bulbs that came with the tree.

So if anyone else has had the same issue, now you know how to fix it.  It’s the white one…