The week in review – 4/4/2009

Happy Birthday, Kumie

This week started out with Kumie’s birthday. I returned home from Kitt Peak and we went out to dinner to celebrate. Though I had given Kumie her first present a week before, I knew she still needed a new Handheld PDA, since the old one was wearing out. This led to an adventure in shopping on eBay.

I haven’t shopped on eBay for years. The last time was in my early days at New Mexico State University and I was shopping for a computer for my office. I remembered I had the account, but realized I’d never transferred it to my personal email when I left the astronomy department. When I tried to transfer my account I discovered that someone else has been assigned my old email address. Fortunately, the person who now has my old NMSU address was quite helpful and I was able to transfer my account with no problem. I found a nice, used replacement for Kumie’s PDA and it arrived this week. Kumie is now using it and much happier with it than the old version.

Tales of the Talisman

Most of my week was spent laying out the spring issue of Tales of the Talisman magazine. I was a bit behind with the issue because this past winter proved to be extremely busy, but I’m quite pleased with how this issue has turned out. The issue went to the printer on Friday and, if all goes well, I hope to have issues to ship in about two weeks. I have made the issue available for preorder at:

Here’s the table of contents for the issue:

3 Spring Is in the Air
Introduction by David Lee Summers

4 Dragon Offerings
Story by Janni Lee Simner
Illustration by Liz Danforth

7 Dragon Dreaming
Poem by K.S. Hardy

8 Unicorn Chase
Story by Douglas Empringham
Illustration by Teresa Tunaley

17 Elusive Legend
Poem by Carol Hightshoe

18 Frost
Story by Andi Newton
Illustration by Lonnie Allen

21 Alchemy of Souls
Poem by Jennifer Crow

22 Dreams and Nightmares
Story by Bradley H. Sinor
Illustration by Tom Kelly

27 No Butterflies Allowed
Poem by Neal Wilgus

28 Tranquility
Story by J Alan Erwine
Illustration by Laura Givens

32 Galaxy Time Shares
Poem by L.B. Sedlacek

34 Red House, Blue House, My House, Your House
Story by Mark Anthony Brennan
Illustration by Noah Van Sciver

37 Haiku
Poems by William Landis

38 Ain’t Technology Wonderful
Story by Jim Chandler
Illustration by Paul Niemiec

42 Collar and Chain
Story by K.S. Hardy
Illustration by April Martinez

49 Red Rain
Poem by Michael S. Wilson

49 Mercury Rising
Poem by Christina Sng

50 Dutchman Rescue
Story by Michael D. Turner
Illustration by Laura Givens

59 Change
Poem by Lawrence Barker

60 Pond Scum
Story by Jim Lee
Illustration by Russell Morgan

63 Near the End
Poem by Maril Crabtree

64 Witch’s Skin
Story by Rik Hunik
Illustration by Neil T. Foster

68 Cereus
Poem by William Corner Clarke

68 Owner’s Manual
Poem by Marcy Lynn Tentchoff

69 Secret Lives of the Undead
Story by Glynn Barrass
Illustration by Paul Niemiec

70 When Time Slips
Story by Lee Clark Zumpe
Illustration by Erika McGinnis

75 When Wizards Dream at Night
Poem by Richard H. Fay

76 A Fury’s Fortune
Story by Robert T. Knight
Illustration by Jim Collins

79 888 Elysian Fields
Poem by CEE

80 The Blessed Days
Story by Mike Allen
Illustration by Jag Lall

88 Malthus overlooked a cure for the planet of the apes
Poem by Roibeárd Uí-neíll

89 Book Reviews

The issue also features fun front and back cover illustrations by Laura Givens. Now that the issue is off to press, it’s back to work on the edits of B.T. Robertson’s Chronicles of the Planeswalkers: Alignment. Once that’s complete, I hope to start work immediately on both the summer and autumn issues of Tales of the Talisman so we can get back on schedule.

Spring Concert

This past week, my daughter Myranda performed in the Spring Concert performed by the string ensembles of Picacho Middle School and Vista Middle School. There were over 100 kids playing such pieces as “Wexford Circle” by Elliot A. Del Borgo and the “Hornpipe” of G.F. Handel. Throughout the concert, there were violin and cello solos as part of the pieces played. However, one kid out of the 100 plus kids there had a solo all to herself. Myranda played Dvorak’s “Largo” on the bass with all eyes on her and did a splendid job. I was very proud of my daughter.

Battle of the Books

If that weren’t enough, Myranda also did very well at the regional Battle of the Books tournament today. For those not familiar with Battle of the Books, it’s like a spelling bee, except that instead of spelling words, kids answer questions about books they’ve read over the course of the school year. Myranda’s team came in second place.

At the Battle of the Books tournament, Kumie discovered that the librarian at Picacho Middle School had accidentally checked her personal copy of The Solar Sea into the school library. There’s now a waiting list for the book from the kids at Myranda’s school. Ms. Miranda, Myranda’s school librarian, would like to order more copies. We’re working on making that happen!

May Schedule

This week the first draft of my May schedule at Kitt Peak National Observatory came out. Looks like I have one particularly long shift that month — nine days on the mountain. The shift itself looks like it will have some good challenges and I look forward to it. However, it does mean that I’ll miss the opening day of Star Trek, which I have been looking forward to seeing. In itself, that’s not a big deal. I’ll see the movie during my next week off. However, I do ask that fiends who do get to see the movie during its first weekend of release not send me any spoilers!


2 comments on “The week in review – 4/4/2009

  1. […] of the Talisman can be ordered here and its TOC here. Categories: Published Previous post: The Exquisite Corpuscle is out! Next post: Earth 2007 […]

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