9/23/14

More Life Downsizing


I've had an interest in the tiny house movement for a while now. Recently the FYI Network began airing a series called Tiny House Nation. I'm nowhere near ready to move into a new place yet, but watching the episodes did get me thinking about my stuff.

There was still quite a bit of clutter among my possessions. I had letters from people I'd stopped hearing from 10, 15, even 20 years ago. I had gifts from book talks that I couldn't associate to a specific talk. I had business cards that I was sort-of collecting, though not really.

The matter of efficient use of space also popped into my mind. You might be able to see in the photo the impression in the carpet that my old waterbed made. (I only had it for 10 years, and it's been gone longer than that, but it was so bulky that the impression is still there.) My bed was in the center of the room, with the head of the bed against the wall. The arrangement took up a good chunk of room space.

Sometime back I tried getting a bit more space out of the room by moving my chest of drawers next to the bed (right side of the impression). It was okay, but there was one drawer I wasn't using, and it wasn't easy to move.

For a time I tried using plastic drawers to carry my books to events. The problem with them was they tended to slide open at inopportune moments, like in the trunk of my car, or when I was bringing them into the event space. I ended up using them for storage around the house.

While watching the show, it hit me: why not use those drawers to store the things I wanted out in my room? Why not use the other plastic containers I have to store everything else, and put them in the bedroom closet? Why not move the bed to get more space in my bedroom?

I went through the stuff I'd accumulated and tossed what I didn't want. I moved some of the plastic drawers to the foot of my bed, and I have another stack beside my bed. The possessions I kept are in bins in the closet, along with my overnight bag and cooler. I now have enough space in my bedroom that I could move my computer in there if I wanted to.

(I don't right now. The room bleeds heat in the winter, and I need a space heater to keep the room from getting too cold. There isn't space for a desk and something to put the heater on, and not have the heater get in the way.)

I feel like I have better control of my living space. I feel that much more freed from having stuff.

I know this downsizing isn't for everyone. But it's worth considering, even if all such thoughts do is make you ask what you'd keep and what you wouldn't if push came to shove.

9/8/14

The Defender #3!



The third Defender story is now available! Here's what it's about:


It’s a new year, and Allan must leave the dukedom of Stoneford to continue his work as the masked mage known as “The Defender.”


A man in the city of Oak Falls has been killed. The guards dashed to the home of the murder, and. saw a man run from them. They chased him for a short distance, then he stopped, pulled up the hood of his cloak, and vanished.

Allan fears that someone is used magic to commit this murder. Could it be another mage? Could someone have found ancient enchantments from the era of the Great Mages? The Defender has to go to Oak Falls and discover the truth.

While Allan is gone, his girlfriend Nancy is about to embark on an adventure of her own as “The Moon Spirit.” What lies in store for both these new heroes?

The book is available in print and ebook editions at Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords now, and other stores soon.

You can read the first chapters of this and the other Defender tales at Wattpad. Another new Defender book will be out in two months.

I hope you enjoy this tale!