Folks, I apologize for my lengthy absence here, but I've got a couple of really good, credible excuses. However, the "hardware-ethernet-DSL line" excuse isn't really interesting, nor particularly zippy, so we'll just go to the other RGCE: I've been researching.
Part of the fun of being in a writer's group with Chris Roberson is getting to watch him start a new project by building a veritable igloo out of reference books, and then watch him walk out of that igloo to go construct a yurt instead. And even as we mock him for knowing, for example, far more about the Soviet Space Program than was ever necessary, one cannot help but mirror his efforts when dipping into a historical context for story background. At least, I can't.
Having sent out several Sailor Tom Sharkey stories to a variety of publishers and outlets, only to have them come back with some really flattering rejections, I am instead turning the whole concept into a speculative historical novel. Think Robert E. Howard's Steve Costigan stories as if they were written by George MacDonald Fraser.
So, I've been building my own tree-fort out of books as I chase down various anecdotes about Tom Sharkey (yeah, he was a real person), the twilight of Vaudeville, circus life in the theater, Tammany Hall, Jim Jeffries, Wyatt Earp, Dundalk, Ireland, and a half dozen other subjects. Now, all of this won't go into the same book. But because I'm telling the series backwards, I need to tip these tidbits in for later.
This is probably the most ambitious thing I've ever attempted. Well, in non-fiction, anyway. I've been writing some small pieces to help me anchor story points in place. I'll post some of them later.