Courtesy of JibJab:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or the press, or the right of the people to peaceably assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
Did some minor tweaking to the blog. Just changed around the fonts for the most part. Kinda like it better this way (duh).
Still working on my first-person spontaneous fic (much to the neglect of Save Grace), which I've tenatively titled Raptor's Reckoning. Yes, I'm the hero. Actually, a cooler, more badass version of me is the hero. Believe me, I wish I could do all the things that the story-me can do.
Still not sure whether or not I'm ever gonna publish it, though. Still pretty close to Larry Correia's and Mike Kupari's work over on TheHighRoad, so it'll probably be one of those just-for-me things that I do from time to time. Of course, that's what More Than a Job/Justice Delayed/Save Grace and Codename: White Knight started out as, so who knows what'll happen.
Posted by Raptor at 10:56 PM
Okay, so, Sunday into yesterday, I came across and read this work of fiction online that had been written by Larry Correia (same guy who wrote Monster Hunter International [Great book, by the way, and the Baen version's up for pre-order on Amazon. /plug]) and Mike Kupari. Long story short, is was totally amazing, doubly so because it was written spontaniously on an internet forum with practically zero proofreading.
If you want, you can read it here.
Okay, so why does this make me hate being a writer?
Because this fic inspired me to write a similar story. Same method: spontaneously with only a little idea of where I want it to go (only I'm writing mine in MS Word rather than directly online). I planned to post it either in a blog or on another forum. Problem is, my story's plot is turning out to be similar to Larry and Mike's. So similar, in fact, that I'm afraid to publish it anywhere for fear of being called on plageriusm. (Larry, Mike, if by some chance you're reading this, I am really sorry!) And Larry and Mike plan on getting it published eventually. Which they should (it is that epically good!), but that sort of leaves me up a creek with my story. Guess I'm just not creative enough sometimes.
Ahh, what the heck. I need to concentrate on finishing Save Grace before I go to Austria next semester anyway.
Posted by Raptor at 11:05 PM
I recently came across a rumor which claims that Koenigsegg, a Swedish car manufacturer, has recently annouced plans to purchase Saab from General Motors.
Not familiar with Koenigsegg (pronounced Cur-nig-zeg)? Not surprising, seeing as how they're one of the hidden gems of the supercar community. Yep, you read that right: Supercar. They've been producing the CC-series of supercar (actually, it's more of a hypercar) since 1998
This is their latest model, the CCX:
If this is true, than it's really incredible. It's like Porsche buying Volkswagen. Oh, wait, nevermind, that already happened. Okay, so it's like Lamborghini buying out Volvo. Average-joe, everyday cars, only now with the genes of the fastest, most powerful machines on the road. Sweetness!
Posted by Raptor at 7:55 PM
I just realized that I haven't mentioned this before!
Okay, big news here. I'm going to be studying in Austria next semester! w00t!
The program is a joint program between 5 universities, and is based out of Alderson-Broaddus College in West Virginia. I'll be staying in a historic Bed & Breakfast (I forget the name, sorry) in the heart of historic Salzburg. Yes, I know all about The Sound of Music, and yes, I will be watching the film before I leave.
In addition to Salzburg, we'll be spending a week in London, and 3-4 days travelling around Italy.
The best part of this program is that we only take classes for four days a week, and from noon on Thursdays until 10:00 PM Sundays, we're free to travel pretty much wherever we want in Europe. We're even given a 90-day EuroRail pass as part of the program! I'm already coming up with a list of places I want to visit!
I'll be driving down to Alderson-Broaddus on September 5, and we all fly to Salzburg on September 7. The program ends on December 3, which is when I'll be flying home. Can't wait!
I'm aiming to have Save Grace finished before I leave. I'm figuring it will be about 100,000 to 120,000 words long before I'm finished. Right now, I have just over 23,000 words down, so I gotta get crackin'!
Oh, and don't worry, I'll be blogging about all the places I visit, and there will be pictures! So stay tuned!
Posted by Raptor at 4:01 PM
The wildebeest stand by the waters’ edge, filling their parched throats with the river’s cool, refreshing water. They have no reason to be afraid; they don’t see or smell any predators nearby. No, all they see is just some tall grass and half-submerged logs floating down the river.
Of course, they don’t think they see me; to them, I’m just another log making my way downstream. Too bad for them I’m something far more sinister and dangerous than a simple piece of wood. Such simpletons, these wildebeest are, little more than walking sacks of meat. Nice, fat, juicy sacks of meat, just waiting to be feasted upon.
I’ve been drifting closer and closer to the heard for minutes now, though the painfully slow current makes it seem like an eternity. Fortunately, the wildebeest seem to be especially parched, and there are still many, many more of the beasts waiting to take a drink. There’s no hurry, though the pangs in my stomach make me wish the river was flowing faster.
I close to twenty lengths to the shore. The wildebeest still have no idea that I’m even in the same river that they’re drinking from, much less that I’ll soon be right on top of them. I’ve been scanning the herd, deciding which of the wildebeest will have the unlucky pleasure of becoming my lunch. I think I’ve spotted the perfect candidate; a rather large specimen still waiting for its turn to drink. This one obviously is lacking in brains, even for a wildebeest; it’s been passed by at least three of his fellow herd-mates while waiting ever-so-patiently for its turn. Even if the stupid thing does detect me, it will be far too late. Perfect; if this pathetic animal ever gets enough brain cells working together to get itself down to the river, it will be the one I snatch.
I close the distance to ten lengths. My quarry finally realizes it’s been passed over and makes several whines and grunts in protest. The rest of the herd ignores it, waiting for it to just take its turn already. Finally realizing that its complaints won’t get it anywhere, the stupid thing shakily walks over to the riverbank and begins to drink. Perfect.
I slowly move my tail back and forth, moving to within five lengths of my prey. Then I go dead still, letting the current push me the rest of the way to the bank while I tense my entire body in anticipation of the coming strike.
Some of the herd begins to sense that something is not right, and they begin to nervously back away from the river. My quarry ignores them, either too thirsty to leave or just too stupid to sense the danger; I’ll bet on the latter. The herd begins to moan nervous warnings, but the simpleton ignores them. My eyes are locked onto it, not wavering for so much as an instant. I draw closer and closer to him, seconds away from the kill.
At the last second, it senses that something is wrong. But by then it is far too late. I’m right next to him.
I explode out of the water. It shrieks in terror and tries desperately to get away, but my jaws clamp down around its throat like a vise. My heavy body throws it off balance, brining him to the ground. I hear the sound of leg bones snapping. It struggles wildly against me, too scared or too stupid to realize that death is inevitable. I’m not in the mood for games and violently jerk my body around into the death roll. I feel its neck snap like a dry twig. Immediately, it stops resisting, and I drag it under the water to finish the job.
By now, the rest of the herd has fled, stampeding away in terror. Doesn’t matter to me, I got what I came for. This meal will quickly be consumed, and just as easily forgotten, but there will be another herd. There always is, and with it will come another meal. One always does.
Posted by Raptor at 9:00 AM
65 years ago today, over 150,000 Americans, British, Canadian, and Free French landed on the shores of Normandy, France. Over 10,000 of them, most of them Americans, were either killed or wounded. It was the largest amphibious invasion in history.
WARNING: The following video clips contain graphic material.
Every man who set foot on those beaches was a hero. Thanks to them, the Allied Forces were able to liberate Europe from the tyranny of Nazi Germany. Never forget their sacrifice.
Posted by Raptor at 1:01 AM
If you get an email from anyone, even people you know very well, saying that they've sent you pictures from something called :Tagged, DO NOT OPEN IT! It activates a program, possibly a virus, that goes through your address book and sends duplicate emails to everyone in your address book. My mother got hit by this today and I almost did as well. We don't yet know what, if anything, the email/program/virus does. I'll post back with updates if/when we do. In the meantime, if anyone gets an email remotely like the ones we got, DO NOT OPEN THEM!!!!!!
Okay, courtesy of Thernlund over at WeTheArmed.com I've just learned that the emails are not malicious. Well, not really. It's a viral invite to join a social networking group called Tagged. All it does is send invite emails to everyone in your address book. You can read more here. So it's nothing to worry about, just really annoying.
T, if you're reading this, thanks again.
Posted by Raptor at 6:24 PM
Normally, I don't do personal posts, but I really feel I need to get this off my chest.
The reason I haven't been posting much recently is because, well, life has been pretty crazy. My grandmother, as some of you may know, had a car accident about six months ago in which she suffered a brain bleed. She's been living with us ever since. The accident and resulting injury really exacerbated the dementia - we think it's Alzheimer's - that she'd already been suffering from. Adding to the situation, my grandmother's always had a really stubborn personality. Not a great combination.
I don't really want to go into details, but the week or so before last was really, really rough. Kinda blew up on Memorial Day. Everybody just reached their limits at the same time. It was bad.
I've been spending most of the past week out of the house, running "errands" and writing my novel. I'm over 22,000 words now, and the plot's really starting to pick up, so that's good, I guess. I know it's not the best way of dealing with the situation (it's like a grieving process that never ends), but I've been having a really hard time with the whole situation since it started back in November, and I was a complete wreck the week before Memorial Day. Honestly, I think I was close to cracking up. Getting away is the only thing I've found that lets me relax.
The whole thing's affected my blogging, as you've no doubt noticed. I have to be in the right "mood," if you will, in order to blog, and I haven't really been feeling it lately. When I am in the blogging mood, I'm usually hopelessly behind on current events, so there's really no point in posting.
I don't know how long this is gonna last, but I'll try to stay on top of things blog-wise. Right now, if you all could keep me and my family in your prayers, I'd really appreciate that. Thank you all.
Posted by Raptor at 11:15 PM