Kluge

What is a Kluge?

“Kluge” is a word common around computer and hardware systems and is an unfortunate appropriation of a German family name. The term kluge (often misspelled “kludge”) refers to a “clunky, unpolished, quickly thrown together,” workaround or patch that results in a difficult to maintain or repair system.

klugeI knew that the term likely came from the Kluge paper feeder and offset printing systems from the early 1900s. It surprised me to find in Missoula a near-working Kluge offset in a custom print business. They were in the process of repairing the Kluge to get it to print foil embossing. A quick study of the Kluge and comparison to other offset printing devices gives you an idea of how the unit earned the reputation–and why the term became common. When they work, they work beautifully. Maintenance and repair is difficult.

Here’s a link in Wikipedia to give you a more or less complete rundown on the term.

offset-printer

One of the scheduled events at the Montana Book Festival was a printing demonstration using a Golding offset printing press. Probably circa 1890, the device weighed about 350-400 pounds. The frame is cast iron and the mechanism works smooth as butter. The owners of this letterpress adapted it in the “make-ready” process to use more modern materials, including polymer plates. That disk in the picture is the ink plate. The rollers smear the ink around on it and apply it to the image plate, which then presses the ink on the paper. It is an amazing process to watch.

Yes, I found all this pretty interesting and exciting. I started working in newspapers when some were still printed using offset and moveable type. I was witness to the transition from hot lead to digital typesetting. Seeing this old stuff and watching it work was very nostalgic. The smell of the ink and oil, the sound of the mechanism as it worked, brought back a lot of memories.

The Kluge and some other devices were at Noteworthy Paper & Press in Missoula.  If you visit, you’ll find a lot of custom printed things.

I visited Valley Christian School for my part of the Youth Festival and got to talk to the high school senior AP english class. After a short read from Sudden Mission, I lead them through an exercise in creating a fictional character using a character sketch. I had fun and I hope the students did, as well.

Saturday was the book fair at the Holiday Inn, and everyone had their books available. Here’s a pic of my books among the others on one table.

books

I had a great time at the festival and I hope they can keep it going.

Keep writing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Festival

Montana Book Festival

I’m off to the Montana Book Festival. This year, I’m not just attending but participating. I’ll be talking to two classes of high school students at Missoula area Christian high schools as part of the Youth Festival.

This is pretty exciting. I enjoyed the festival last year, sold a few books, and met a few other authors. One thing that impressed me was how much the Missoula community embraced and participated in the festival.

I may still be added to a panel or two as the schedule finalizes. I plan to attend a number of them, as well. So, if you are in the Missoula area this week, please stop by the festival. Look me up! I will have the new BugBear Books editions of Sudden Mission and Nasty Leftovers with me. A Missoula vendor should have a few copies of each, as well.

After this, I’m going to try to settle down for the season and get busy working on the third book in the Spirit Missions series, as well as some other writing projects.

Keep writing!

 

Moved

Moved!

We’re moved. After a couple of weeks between two houses, fixing stuff in one, moving stuff to the other: we’re done. No, all the boxes are not unpacked, but we’re all in one house.

Blinds showed up. Damaged.

Blinds showed up. Damaged.

I’ll not go into all the details of trying to get Internet, TV and other services, as well as getting new things delivered and installed. Some of that was just a nightmare. We hoped to have one more thing delivered today, but I had to refuse it. Too damaged. We must now seek other options.

This is my excuse for being so quiet here and on social media for the last several weeks. Still, I managed to work with Scott some and we have a logo design just about ready. I’ll preview that on this blog as soon as we have the full color image.

Since I now have Internet again and can use resources, I’ll be getting the print versions of the Spirit Missions books ready. More details on that will follow.

I edited the Events page, so check it out. The Montana Book Festival in Missoula is shaping up. I also have another reading scheduled at Auntie’s in downtown Spokane. Hope to have the print editions going and available in time for those.

 

Relaunching

Relaunching

As of today, Sudden Mission is on schedule to relaunch tomorrow. Nasty Leftovers is still in the works and I hope to have it up tomorrow or June 2. Both books will be available in ebook form on Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, and Nook (assuming Barnes & Noble gets on the stick and verifies my info).

I’ll be updating links on the book’s pages as they become live and as I get to them. So, watch the links as they come live!

This last weekend, I was in Missoula, MT, for MisCon 30. I had a great time participating in panels with other writers and guests. I met Brian Rathbone and Peter J. Wacks for the first time, and met some other writers once again. Some after many years. Working with these folks on panels was a privilege, educational, and entertaining.

Who you gonna call?

Who you gonna call?

One of the panels was “Clash of the Titans: Horror Monsters and Science.” James Glass (Spokane), Brook Stanley (Barrow, Alaska), Corey Ragsdale (Missoula), and myself had a lot of fun talking about horror monsters and what could and could not happen.

Costumes were everywhere, and some were very good. A costume parade was arranged Friday afternoon and the participants took the parade around downtown Missoula. I heard comments about it in my hotel, which was a long way from the heart of town.

I gave out promo cards, business cards and talked to a lot of folks. Being in this transitional time, between publisher and self-published, was a little weird.

MisCon is a smaller convention, but I think it will become a regular event on my schedule.

Keep writing.

 

 

Preparing for Relaunch

Preparing Relaunch

I’m in the middle of preparing to relaunch the e-book versions of Sudden Mission and Nasty Leftovers as soon after May 31 as possible. I’ll relaunch the print versions shortly after, probably about mid-June.

BugBear Books is an official trade name, and I have the accounts on Amazon, iBook, Nook, and Kobo set up. The bulk of the work involves preparing the books in the various electronic formats and making sure things work as expected. I stumbled across a couple of typos I want to correct before I relaunch, as well. Odd what you encounter when you read to an audience. I want the quality as good, if not better, than we had with the previous publisher.

I hope to have Sudden Mission back online on June 1. If all works well, I should have Nasty Leftovers up a day or so later. Of course, Murphy rules and there is a lot going on that may impact the timing. As mentioned before: buying a house, selling a house, moving, and maintaining the schedule. It just never stops.

Of course, right in the middle of all this, I’ll be in Missoula for MisCon 30. Check the Events page for my schedule at that convention. I’ll have some Booktrope editions of both books available and will be signing, as per the schedule. It’ll be great to meet readers, friends, family, and other writers. I’m bringing a special book with me and plan to get an autograph from an old friend.

Stay tuned. I’ll post as I can over the next couple of weeks as things progress. I’ll also try to get a post with pics and all from MisCon. Should be fun.

Keep writing, and thanks for your support and patience.