New Chapter

November 26th, 2016

First time in months where the perfect confluence of events—something to say and the time to say it—are in the house.

Speaking of the house, we’re in a new one … and so is my studio. I’m told that the room my studio is in now is actually smaller than the one I had in our last home. But I shared that one with my wife and here workstation. Now she’s got her workstation in another room and I have a sofa in place of it.

The other thing that I find makes my new studio so much more conducive to working well is that behind me are sliders leading to a deck that overlooks the golf course we now live on. And as golf, like book design, captivates me, I am thrilled.

But the move slowed down work prematurely this year. I stopped promoting and looking for new projects once we knew we were selling the old and serious about finding the next. Just the same, it was all I could do to finish projects I had in house.

Interestingly, even with no new work coming in since mid-summer, my usual by-Christmas-business–is-dead song need not be sung yet, as it looks like I’m still on target for two new books to start before the year ends: the third in a four-book children’s series and a book of music criticism on the works of Beethoven.

And I am poised to pick up again on the book I began writing some time ago about using the open-source page layout program Scribus for book design and layout. To celebrate I’ll be doing this on a new computer, a much faster, 27-inch iMac (still with the second monitor, the 23-inch Cinema Display I’ve had for some years now), running under the new Macintosh OS, Sierra.

I am doing my best to continue with the software I’ve been using for some years now. While I apparently have not reach an expiration date on that older version of Adobe’s Creative Studio, CS5.5, as well as QuarkXPress 2015, I am preparing for a time when I may just have to hold my nose and subscribe to Adobe’s Creative Studio to continue using InDesign and Photoshop.

None of the above is to say that I am over my anger at Adobe’s “pay-in-perpetuity” plan, but there is a high degree of comfort I will admit to when it comes to working in the Adobe suite. Nevertheless, writing the book will give me a better feel for alternatives. And there is still Quark, which, contrary to many I’ve heard from, remains a viable and improved program with tools for making ebooks that offer further value.

So things couldn’t be much better. Thanksgiving arrived at a particularly appropriate point this year. I hope everyone else is feeling the same and events are proceeding just as happily and successfully for all.

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