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2014 In Side Business

Right.  Only now I get paid for it.
I'm reminded by skamille's post...

I wrote a 2014 year-end summary, mostly for my side business stuff.

If you find yourself asking, "did he actually make any money, or just complain about it?" the answer is "not much, but you can get my total to the penny from that blog post."

I don't list my expenses, but most of it is training and generally scaling up the new product, which isn't really making money yet. The old product had barely any expenses.

Life continues...

creative resourceful sane
This week, I am feeling like a success in my chosen profession.

No, not that chosen profession. I know, hard to keep 'em straight.

A bunch of people bought my book, so I put together an actual Christmas-time coupon and actually emailed people about it. Like a professional person who sells a thing. Crazy. Then more of them bought copies, because coupon. Yay!

I also sold another copy of my deploy class. I thought I had sold a copy and then got asked for a refund the next day, but I have high hopes for my new student-number-four. I'm also getting email list signups. These are good signs.

I am becoming better at the annoying-but-not-complicated minutiae of selling a big thing with a lot of moving pieces.

I am also totally sucking at sitting down and doing video editing. I am going to do more of that before wimping out and paying somebody to do video editing for me.

But the wimping out? At some point that will totally happen. I just don't know when yet.

Happy holidays!

Recipes so I remember...

2013 work pic (2)
Blueberry sorbet

Peanut butter cookies, into which I substituted rice milk. It was okay, but *very* crumbly. Probably needs gluten-free flour-or-something, or another binder like xanthan gum.

Rice pudding, which I totally didn't do this way - I didn't realize it wanted uncooked rice, so I wound up with soup, and then I added a cup of uncooked arborio rice afterward and did it as a makeshift maple-cinnamon risotto.

So next time, I'll totally just make the rice pudding as a sweet risotto from the get-go (using rice milk, not broth). It came out great.
your laugh is like an angel snorting
Still keepin' on, keepin' on. Still spending most of my time on work for OnLive, entertaining and/or teaching my kids, trying to make money on the side, and some time, but never enough, with rightkindofme.

Lately:

I've finished two chapters of my new Ruby Deployment class and about a video and a half. I'm writing the third chapter, editing the second video, getting a camcorder to record a third tech-talk video... So much to do, so much to do.

Shanna has recently recorded her first and second Minecraft tutorials with me. I need to edit those, too.

I've fallen off the wagon on weightlifting, just shy of being able to squat my own body weight, and bench-pressing about 150lb. It's been over a week since I lifted.

Gave three tech talks recently on Ruby app server and concurrency stuff. One more coming up, and then I'll probably take a break for a bit. But we'll see - that could still be a rich source of videos for the class, and I haven't been recording them. Will change when I get the camcorder.

Cooking. Lately that's figuring out how to do elimination-diet stuff for Krissy - no eggs, no gluten, no soy, no corn, only a specific limited set of vegetables... It's interesting working with such a limited palette of ingredients. I'm learning how to do it, texture- and chemistry-wise, but it's taking a lot of research and experimenting.

It's hard to believe we're down to six-ish weeks left in the year. So much I want to do, so little I have time for. In some ways it's a lot like cooking for the elimination diet -- less "what do I want to do?" and more "what do I have to work with?"

Baking, Baking, Not-Baking

Big Ears - "I swear by the foam coming o
It's been a great few weeks for making food. Krissy got an excellent vanilla-themed cookbook for her birthday and I've been making stuff from it.

I have now, for instance, made Panna Cotta (twice), and made Boston Cream donuts from scratch, including the pastry cream and frying the donuts myself. Also, oatmeal white-chocolate-chip cookies and ganache to turn them into cookie sandwiches.

This is in addition to various non-dessert cooking I do. Having kids has been great for my cooking, mostly as a result of getting more practice.

Of course, it hasn't been perfect for the kids even with all the desserts -- and even though they turn out not to like Panna Cotta much :-) They tore up the planters full of various food plants and flowers in the back yard, and I caught Shanna as she was trying to cut through the swing ropes with a hedge clipper.

So: I'm cooking more, kids are grounded.

How are you all doing?

Finishing streak

pants on fire - matters not!
Some days you just get on a "finishing stuff" streak.

Last night, I made major revisions on my Ruby deployment class that were needed, verified them, emailed them out. I finished editing a video for a guy I promised one.

At work, I finished off two major requests (I'd say more but, you know, work.)

And suddenly I'm sitting around feeling hugely uninspired. Because oh man, that's about enough for 24 hours.

First World Problems

Happy Sithrak Witnesses
On the one hand, it's kind of cool to be able to use phrases like, "the CEO of Reddit, who I went to college with." I'm totally at that point in my career - not that I knew Yishan particularly well, and he may not remember me even slightly.

On the other hand, it seems to be kind of a rough week to be name-dropping him.

I'm... mixed on his response. I would have had a lot more respect for a response like, "we believe we can be a haven for amazing generosity, political dissidence against oppressive regimes and weird social experiments only because we're trusted to regulate almost nothing" a lot more than a combination of moralizing with espousing Reddit's own complete lack of moral principles.

I have a strong, strong belief in the need for high-anonymity spaces where things can go specifically unregulated. Like, even with all the problems they cause, and those problems are numerous and serious. Political dissent isn't guaranteed positive, nor are most similar activities. Not everybody who wants to overthrow the current world order is doing it out of the goodness of their heart.

But to phrase it as a moral imperative, even when that is true, is just stupid. You could play up the benefits (there are many.) You could talk about things you're doing to help prevent the actual law-breaking (he did, a bit.) You could talk about how Reddit-the-company isn't capable of fully distinguishing between the good and bad cases, and that would set a horrible precedent and would eventually be tragedy (yup.)

But the moralizing tone is just going to come off badly no matter how you do it.

And I'm not even gonna start on "we behave this way because we're a government, not a corporation," with the deep undercurrent of techno-libertarianism that implies. You can read into that one without my help.
beard 2013
Mostly because I have a other places to write that I've set up for professional stuff, and I'm doing that properly, and so I feel like I don't have much place to write personal or silly stuff.

Today I spent a lot of time with the kids. Three+ hours at the local park. A Hindi lesson for Calli. Then home to bake chocolate chip cookies and attempt to turn them into ice cream sandwiches.

The cookies came out great, partly because I used the good chocolate chips and a lot of them. The ice cream sandwiches came out overly squishy, despite using slightly-melty ice cream and saran wrap and putting them in the freezer. That's what you're supposed to do. It's possible that longer in the freezer would have helped, but I think mostly the ice cream was too melty.

I still remember a little from Hindi class last time. But now we have to memorize a fish nursery rhyme for next week, so we'll see how that goes. This class is clearly at a much faster pace than last time. That's probably a good thing. I do still remember the Gayatri Mantra from last time around, so that's nice.
beard 2013
My Ruby deployment class is now open. The number of sales, while small, is not zero. I have run a real launch around it, which I also messed with to add an affiliate "buy this thing and I get paid" email for Marc-Andre Cournoyer's latest Owning Rails class.

I am writing and scheduling these emails slightly in advance rather than exactly when they are emailed to 1300+ people.

I am feeling like I do this for at least part of a living. It'll be awhile before it rivals my day job, naturally. I have a pretty darn good day job.

But it's very freeing to make things and then sell them to people. I am enjoying it.

I will also be happy when the "new product launch" portion of the program is done-for-now. It takes a lot of time. And the second product is far, far easier than the first one.

As a lovely bonus, I am clearly making more sales of my previous book due to the additional attention and blog posts I am giving to the new class. So that's also nice.

I have high hopes for all this. And also a long slog between here and where I want to be. That's progress.