Sephrena Ill

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Sephrena will probably not be on tonight as she has just got out of the hospital after flu with a high fever and an emergency trip. She's home now but is probably going to be in bed for a few days, recovering.

Please think of her, she does a lot of behind the scenes work here.

Hugs,
Erin

Editing Problem with Summary/Teaser Window in Stories etc.

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Basically, the latest update to one of the background parts of Drupal broke the mini-editor or rather the mini-editor's integration into the editing box. The mini-editor is the string of little boxes above the editing window that lets you automate inserting structured HTML into your stories, blogs and forum posts.

Hatbox Funds Are Low

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I always hate doing this but Hatbox funds have not met November goals and it's already December and bills are coming due. I easily paid out more than $1000 dollars in November to keep the sites associated with BC up and running so I'm a bit short for all of my other bills this month.

If you can, please chip in using the Hatbox link in the right column, or email me if you want to send me money by PayPal or Post Office.

Thanks,
Erin

Comment Etiquette

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Story comments, in case anyone wondered, are for commentary on the story and the writing thereof. They are not for speculation on whether the author had the right to post the story, or for guesses about the writer's political opinions, mental states or educational status. Nor are they for inflammatory comments about current social climates or current affairs. Note the qualifier there, inflammatory.

"Identity Death" and why it is a forbidden "criticism" on BC

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Simply put, because it is bogus. It's exactly like criticizing a story for having a sex change in it. "Fresh Start" stories appeal to some people but not to all, so it is appropriate to decide that if a story has an theme or element that you do not enjoy, then you weren't the target audience for the story.

My Christmas Present from Daniel Ford

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Daniel is the artist on the webcomics I work on, Quillian and Sam Valentine. He's also a sculptor of some skill. He did these beautiful little figurines of the characters Alistair and Zook from the strip I write and draw myself, Alistair2Zook. Click on the image to go to the (partial) online archive of the strip.

My favorite TG Christmas story...

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Christopher Leeson's Noel isn't exactly a traditional Christmas story. And yet, in many ways, it is the perfect Christmas story, being about redemption. It's also one of the stories that convinced me that the net was a wonderful place to discover and display actual well-written fiction and so led almost directly to the founding of BigCloset as a site for displaying and discovering TG fiction.

Unpublished

LAST FEW HOURS!! - December 2012 One Winter's Eve Story Contest Voting

Vote for your top three (3) favorite stories and let's see where those votes land! Try to read as many entries as you can. There is no rush to vote as voting will be for ten or eleven days so you have plenty of time to read.

The top six winners will be selected according to which stories get the most votes and there will be three judges' prizes selected from the remaining stories. An author can only win one of the nine prizes.

Remember, you can vote for up to three and you can come back and change your vote as long as voting is open. Only BigCloset full Members can vote.

Starting the new year cold

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First night this winter it actually got below freezing here and my furnace went out at 10 p.m. last night. I didn't get to sleep until the dog got under the covers with me about 2 a.m. because SHE was cold.

Got the repairman outside looking at it now, if it's an electrical problem, he should have it fixed soon. If it's the heat exchanger, well, that furnace is old enough to have run for president against John McCain. Third party ticket though, so no hope of winning.

Got to take Cuddles to her eye checkup in an hour, looking forward to the heater in the Nissan.

Other Sites

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Discussing supposed failings in the administration of other sites is NOT an appropriate topic for this space. Such problems should be solved in private. I expect that sort of courtesy from the admins of other sites and strive always to respect them.

I am here to help facilitate solutions if someone has a problem contacting the admin of another site, but please, don't do the dirty laundry in public. Any problems can usually be solved with patience, courtesy and understanding.

But remember, this is BigCloset, not a public laundromat.

Hugs to all,
Erin

Omega Wolf Pattern

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Wolfpacks have a hierarchy of respect, obligation and deference. At the top of this hierarchy are the Alpha Wolves, usually a mated pair but sometimes a single individual. At the bottom of the structure is the Omega Wolf. The Omega eats last and is chased and bitten by all the wolves higher up in the structure.

If the Omega wolf dies or leaves the pack, a new Omega ends up being chosen quickly and is not always the wolf that was formerly the one just above the old Omega.

This is a hard thing to do...

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As you can see in the Hatbox graphic on the side, I'm asking for $2000 in donations and income again for the month of February. Part of this is because we are going to have to replace a server soon, since the one bought last month did not work out as a replacement for the main BCTS server. It's in use and earning money for us which is a help but we're going to have to spend $800 or more for the kind of server we really need.

Edeyn Hannah Blackeney, My Friend

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My friend, Edeyn Hannah Blackeney, passed away early Monday morning, Feb 4, 2013, apparently from a blood clot in her lung. She was 37.

A talented and prolific writer, Edeyn had many fans on BigCloset for her stories of the Sk8r Grrls and others, though she had not posted much recently due to work and personal life.

Reapers and Spammers and Bots, Oh, My!

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The site was down for a few hours today while Piper and I fought off some reaper bots. We firewalled their ISPs, all of which were in China, and while we were at it, we firewalled out some spammers, too. Took about four hours of solid work.

The rumors of BCs demise were greatly exaggerated. :)

Hugs,
Erin

I think we lost a story Monday night...

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I think we may have lost a story in the database meltdown last night. We had made a backup of what was going on at one point yesterday and it seems to me that at least one story got posted after that backup which is what we just restored from. Please, I hope everyone is keeping copies of their stories before posting them and if your story posted and disappeared, you can just repost. I hope.

Still tuning the server

We hope you have noticed that things are slowly getting better as we tune the server for better performance but sometimes we blow a sour note like this morning. And the server is still a bit flakey which we are still working on figuring that out.

But we have ordered the new drives, they should be in tomorrow and so it's likely that later this week the site will be down for as much as a whole day while we install the new drives and then move the software over. And then there will be another round of tuning things to get optimum performance.

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