These are pictures of what’s being called the Scoggins Creek Fire, in Newberg by Hagg Lake. Hagg is a popular man-made lake used for recreation–fishing, swimming, boating, water-skiing, etc. Lots of picnic grounds. I rode my bike out there last summer.

Mandatory evacuations are underway, it’s burned well over 150 acres now. I got these pics on my way home from work today (I did stop to take most of these). I sure hope they get this under control quickly. It’s supposed to be near 90º tomorrow and Sunday which won’t help.

Fire 2 Fire 3 Fire 4

Fire 5 Fire 6

Fire 7

Mount St Helens Outing

I haven’t done any kind of road trip in ages, so it felt really good to get out and head up to Mount St. Helens in Washington today. Do not believe Google Maps when it tells you it’s only a 90-minute drive. It took about three hours to get to the Johnston Ridge Observatory. I did make a couple of quick stops along the way, but not another 90 minutes worth. Anyway, herewith, a few of the better shots:

This one I left uncompressed, embiggen at your peril.

Mount St Helens


path of destruction

Castle Lake




Mount St Helens portrait


Mt Adams

This is Mt. Adams seen from Johnston Ridge Observatory

It was hot, but the wind up at Johnston Ridge made it feel quite comfortable. It’s a breathtaking drive on 504. The surrounding countryside is lush and thick with trees. I tried to get pictures of Silver Lake as I drove past but they didn’t turn out. It had been a long time since I’d been up there, and I’d forgotten how spectacular it is. The pictures don’t really give a sense of how enormous the mountain is. I heard someone say the rangers had spotted some elk below in the valley, but I couldn’t see them.

September Sunshine

Just posting this so in the dark, gloomy days ahead I can look back and remember there really was sun and warmth here.

September sunshine

This is a “painting effect” that the camera does. Kind of fun to play with.

sun effects


Morning clouds

Sept 1 morning

Leaves, painted and unpainted

Painted leavesunpainted leaves

Moving Forward


So it looks like it’s really going to happen, I’m really going to unleash Andrej, Neko, and Anne-Marie on the world, probably late this summer. This is, quite frankly, terrifying. Honest to dog, I don’t know how I’m going to make myself do all the obligatory marketing and selling. I don’t want to become “that author” who endlessly tweets nothing but ‘buy my book!’ tweets.

But first, I have to get something, some kind of descriptors or keywords to my cover artist so he can get started on the painting (yes, not CGI. I’ve seen some really dreadful covers done in CGI). :::chews nails::: This is much harder than I thought it would be. There are the obvious things: vampires, Prague, the three main characters. I really have no clear vision of what I want on the cover so I’ll wait and see what he comes up with. I’m still not entirely sure what all he’s going to do as far as creating the digital version of the painting. So many details still to work out. I hope to have a contract in the next day or two.

I’m rethinking how/where I’m going to release the book. I had initially figured I’d go KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) but now I’m thinking Smashwords who can distribute to iTunes and loads of others, including Kobo (since that’s the kind of ereader I have).

Oh god I feel like Kermit.