Easter Bank Holiday

Even before I opened my eyes, I could tell that it was a Bank Holiday – not because of a lack of traffic, but because there was a strong wind blowing and the temperature had dropped noticeably in the night. Bad weather on a Bank Holiday is something of a tradition, and I’ve even seen a scientific paper on why that is. I just can’t remember the details as it has been a few years, but its something to do with a disruption in warm air from factories being closed.

You may have noticed a small change in colour scheme, if not layout, over the last twenty four hours – and that’s because I’m making use of my time to update and alter a few things. One of those is the beginning of documentation of the game that we’ve started as the DDC, and therefore a bit of a shuffle of the Gaming menu structure so it doesn’t get lost. I’d love to say I had a grand design, but just as the strap line for the website says: I’m making it up as I go along.

How has my Bank Holiday been? Quiet for the most part. I’ve made more maps as contingencies for when the group goes off-script, and I’ve played a bit on the XBox, and then Lady M and I watched the remake of Aladdin while we had our supper and were pleasantly entertained. I’ve just been out for a brisk twenty minute walk, and now am trying to enthuse myself to write while Lady M plays some Assassin’s Creed. I think part of the low-grade irritation at the moment is that I’m missing myr s fiercely but there’s nothing any of us can do about it

Interesting Stat Moment

I just had a look at the site visitors numbers for the last month or two and we’ve already surpassed the total visits for February 2019. I’ll make no pretence that we’re talking tens of thousands of people here – there’s a little over 4oo wordpress-registered followers and a thousand or so email subscribers – but it’s still enough to make me smile, be grateful for all of you reading, and remember to keep posting regularly.

Site Updates 9th October

Pretty sure this is what my body thinks of all this

Seeing as I’m home sick and my brain won’t switch off, I’m swapping a few things round on the site. I’ve added an artwork section, which currently compiles last year’s Inktober, and will soon have this year’s and some general artwork/doodles in a general gallery too.

I’m also rationalising and rejigging the fiction bits – especially the short fiction – to make it a bit simpler to navigate. Mostly its collapsing the 2017 fiction and the older fiction pieces into all-encompassing alphabetical lists, which should then make it easier for me to find things and add new pieces.

Site Rejigging in Progress

If things appear odd at any time on this site at any time, its probably just me rearranging things a bit. The short fiction is getting simplified as some devices couldn’t cope with the menu layouts, and I still need to properly update and fill out the Tango Mike Cosplay section too.

Its like having a spring clean – except that it’s Autumn and I may make things even messier in the process of sorting things out. That’s probably a good analogy for any of my attempts to pretend to be a useful member of general society. My biggest hurdle is likely to be my tiredness as I’m working extra hours at the moment (hey, a new mortgage needs feeding).

I also, as much as I love writing about the whimsicality of library life, have to maintain a degree of discretion so don’t expect too many raving rants about work illogicalities – the same can’t necessarily be said for some of the gems that Lady M has been coming out with recently.

Ah well – its the weekend, there’s sunshine, and I’m sure I’ll see some of it at some point. This evening sees the return of the libatious librarians at least, so there may be social media sightings tonight.

Some more Site Updates

Its been a busy week, but somehow not as hectic as some, so I’m taking some time today to throw some more cosplay updates onto the page so I can then update the galleries later. Today I’ve put up two of the lesser-known or obvious characters – the Azkaban Escapee, and a Steampunk King Triton – paradoxically in many ways they’re some of the more complex designs in terms of props and gear.

I’m still not totally sold on the new interface for WordPress, especially in dealing with the more complex page structures that I currently have. I may revisit the Fiction and Roleplay sections to see if they’d benefit from a less complicated arrangement.

Site Update In Progress

I’ve started updating the site, mostly with pictures and commentary around my cosplaying under the name Tango Mike Cosplay. There was already a tag for it on the navigation bar at the top of the page, but I’m in the process of making sub-pages to that, each with a gallery of images to peruse.

This is fun.

Cosplaying Shenanigans

I’ve been shuffling my social media cards a bit recently, which has taken up more time than I anticipated. It will also have a knock-on effect here in the form (eventually) of changes to pages and possibly layouts.

Essentially I have created a separate Facebook page and identity as Tango Mike Cosplay so that my poor family and friends can have a break from all the photos and geekery should they choose.

It also allows me a little distance so that people who may be interested can see the public stuff without being brought into the closer Friends privacy circle. It makes sense in my head.

Now I’ve been at great pains to keep my name associated clearly with my online presence, as much for my own personal accountability and brand, so why the new brand for the cosplay, and why that name?

Well it’s quite simple:┬áTango Mike is of course my initials, keeping the strong link to my name, and the semiotics of a callsign-style identity such as may be used in military, police, or emergency services comms.

Tango Mike Cosplay Photograph by ToneagraphyIt is also deliberate as it ties in to a major project on the cosplay front next year.

I’ve been in conversation with a Halo cosplay group called Fireteam Ascension about creating a cosplay mashup of my gender-bent Harley Quinn with a Spartan Mjolnir suit. The heavy lifting on the design of that still needs to happen, but it will draw on the classic black and red and white livery of the character rather than the cinematic interpretation.

So that should keep me out of trouble

My Private Audience

I have a small number of people who have the option to read the stories I write a little earlier than anyone else. They are at one and the same time my cheerleaders and editorial eyes. 

They quite often manage to capture the more outlandish spelling mistakes and grammatical oddities before the stories hit the wild. This is just as well because most of my writing is currently done on my phone using an app called Journey. 

It’s a journalling app that exports very smoothly to other applications, but like anything on a phone it is rather held to ransom sometimes by the dreaded autocorrect feature.

So, my private audience serves both as somewhere to play with words with people I know and trust, and as a point of checking before publication. I’m beginning to think that they should have a collective name – but perhaps ‘private audience’ works well enough.

They’re amazing people: Ladies M, P, G, Gr, and of course the redoubtable Mre B are your first line of editorial defence against my wildest inaccuracies. You’re all very welcome.

So Far So Good

Well – that’s the Fiction Fragments all sorted, alphabetised and stuck into two sections (A-L and M-Z) for people to have a gander at. It has been an interesting exercise over the last couple of days to juggle them all around, and in some instances correct a few spelling mistakes and grammatical issues. Most of the fragments are very much first drafts, and it shows, but its also been interesting to me to see how my writing has changed, as well as how it hasn’t

There are some longer pieces in there that are very early drafts from longer form stories and the novel – and then there are a lot that are very simply brain blurts that just needed to be recorded somewhere.

The next step is going to be repeating the process for the short pieces that I’ve been writing this year. I’m going to give them a discrete section and separate them out by months – I think – just so that screen estate isn’t swallowed up in huge drop-down lists – but I’ll adjust as we go along.

All in all its been a nice use of what has turned into a quiet weekend of battery recharging for all of us.

A Few Site Updates

I am having a resolutely lazy day today – by which I mean I’m not running around sorting out libraries or travelling to anywhere weirder than normal. Instead, while Lady M plays Assassin’s Creed, I’m going back through this site and organising the Fiction section in the menus above this blog.

I need to do it anyway so that the deluge of new fiction pieces have somewhere to be showcased rather than necessitating a deep trawl through the blog itself, but I’ve got a little side tracked with dragging out all the little fiction fragments I’ve thrown out here over the last five or so years.

So, have a look under the Fiction Fragments section and keep an eye out on the general Fiction tab while I shuffle things around. At the time of writing, I think I’m going to make tabs based on the month of writing for this year’s challenge, but I’ll see how manageable that becomes…