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The illustrious Carol Buchanan, my host Friday.

A last-minute change to the schedule:

Tomorrow (Friday), I’ll be taking part in a Q&A at author Carol Buchanan’s blog. Carol is the fabulously talented author of God’s Thunderbolt and Gold Under Ice, two books you should definitely read. And, as it turns out, she slings some pretty good questions, too.

Here’s where I’ve been so far on my virtual book tour, and where I’m going in the coming week:

Monday, January 24: A Word Please

Tuesday, January 25: 5:01 blog

Wednesday, January 26: The Book Inn

Thursday, January 27: Straight from Hel

Monday, January 31: Cherie Newman, host of the excellent “The Write Question” on Montana Public Radio, will give me the keys to her blog of the same name and let me hold forth on what it means to write in and of Montana.

Tuesday, February 1: My friend Jim Thomsen will host a Q&A with me in the form of a Facebook note. The interview will be simulcast on two authors’ blogs: R.J. Keller’s Ingenious Title to Appear Here Later and Kristen Tsetsi’s From a Little Office in a Little House.

Wednesday, February 2: One Book at a Time blogger Page Eberhardt will host me for an essay on where stories come from, as if I have any idea.

Thursday, February 3: The fellas over at 3 Guys, One Book will let me pitch in with an entry in their ongoing series “When We Fell in Love.”

Friday, February 4: I will wrap up at Coffee, Books and Laundry, hosted by Melissa Vasquez, where I’ll write about balancing readers’ expectations with following the muse wherever she leads.

There will be giveaways of signed books at every stop, so please follow along and throw in an entry.

Resolution for 2011: More blogging.

The stats helper monkeys at mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high-level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 5,300 times in 2010. That’s about 13 full 747s.


In 2010, there were 59 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 149 posts. There were 66 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 17mb. That’s about 1 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was July 22nd with 136 views. The most popular post that day was Copy editor’s burden.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were,,,, and

Some visitors came searching, mostly for craig lancaster, missoula, clark howat, “craig lancaster”, and karate kid ii. (I love that last one.)

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.


Copy editor’s burden July 2010


About Craig August 2009
1 comment


About Craig’s novels September 2009


Brian October 2010
9 comments and 1 Like on,


Package envy August 2010
6 comments and 1 Like on,

New to the blogroll today (and only because I was lazy about 10 days ago, when it launched):

Jim Thomsen, gentleman and blogger.

Reading Kitsap, by my good friend Jim Thomsen.

While the blog does play to a Kitsap County, Wash., core audience, Jim has some ambitious plans for it. As he said in the introductory post: “It’s my hope that this becomes the one stop for all news about our writing, publishing, bookselling and book-sharing communities.”

So far, he’s been true to his words. He’s had items on writers (including the awesome Jonathan Evison, who has come in for some praise here), provocative posts about how technology is changing our reading habits, riffs on book design and all kinds of other fabulous stuff. One of the best parts of my day is when a new post hits my e-mail box.

And if you think I might be trying to figure out some way to connect myself to Kitsap County so I can wedge my way into this blog … you’re right!

As I wrote a blog post about my BlackBerry, I took a picture of the screen with my BlackBerry's camera. I stopped there, as I have no desire to push my luck and end up in another dimension.

Sunday, I bought a BlackBerry Curve. Or, I should say, my wife allowed me to get a BlackBerry Curve. This has nothing to do with being a beaten-down man, although I surely am; no, it’s that my wife maintains the cell phone account, owing mostly to the fact that she cares about it and I do not.

That may change, though, now that I’m a BlackBerry owner. Angie, who was due for an upgrade, graciously allowed me to use her upgrade slot and deferred her own until December. This may have something to do with the age of my previous phone: two tin cans connected by string. True, there were certain charms to its rustic simplicity, but times have changed, and Angie suggested that I change with them.

Now, I’m not not suggesting that I’m a technophobe. Anyone who deals with me on Facebook knows how enamored I am of that particular social phenomenon. I was a first adopter of the iPod. I blogged before the blog became a common Internet feature, and as you can see, I continue to blog well past the point that everyone else is confining his or her thoughts to 140 characters or fewer. What I am, instead, is an Antisocial Bastard When It Suits Me. I do not really wish to be in touch, at least not in a way that requires me to answer the phone, and I’d just as soon not respond to your text messages, as I do not have any luv 4 ur language LOL!

And yet, my BlackBerry has a Facebook app (I realize that 94.8 percent of you already know this), and so my world is now sufficiently rocked.


The problem now is that Facebook and e-mail will follow me everywhere, and they were nuisance enough when they were confined to my desktop computer at home. Those of you who are my Facebook compadres have probably seen my daily countdown. There have been a lot of funny guesses about what it signifies — and some real frustration, which I don’t understand at all — so if you’ve read this deep, you deserve a payoff: When I reach the number 0 (I’m at 74 now), my friend Jim Thomsen will be throwing a lock on my Facebook account Monday through Friday for about three months as I try to make serious tracks on my new novel.

It says awful things about my self-control that it’s come to this, but I really see no other way. Last November, while my first novel, 600 Hours of Edward, was just getting its legs, I put down about 16,000 words of Novel No. 3 (Novel No. 2 — The Summer Son, which is coming out in January — was already drafted). But once promotional work on Edward heated up, my progress on No. 3 ground to a halt. In the scraps of writing time I found while also holding down a full-time job, I was able to complete some essays and short stories, as well as revisions on The Summer Son, but I never could disappear into that deep trance I need to make steady progress on a novel. Since I suspect that the same struggle will befall me once The Summer Son comes out, I have to make serious hay before it does. Hence, the Facebook lockup. On weekends, Jim will restore my password and let me roam free, then he’ll lock it up again late Sunday night.

The irony here is that I’ve turned into exactly the sort of creature I so enjoy mocking: the scatterbrained, attention-deficit-ridden gadget hound who seems to have no time for nuance or deep thought. It’s shameful, when you really stop to …

OH MY GOD! My BlackBerry has an NFL app! YES!

(Help me. Please.)


One last note: If you haven’t already, please do check out Messages to Our Fathers. Some nice essays are piling up, along with some links to books that make for some fine reading.

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