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A Few Odds, Some Ends

Nightmarish day yesterday. The computer virus that we've been battling for weeks... often hammering it down, but never entirely eradicating it... upsurged again, and totally messed my Windows machine, so Ty had to spend the whole day dealing with it, and I could never get on line to read my emails.

He was finally successful, so I'm back in business. In fact, the computer is running better than it has for weeks. Maybe Ty has finally slain the beast. But I won't celebrate too soon.

Of course, just one single day away from my email meant that I had more than a hundred letters in my inbox when I did get back on this morning. ONE DAY! Aieeee....

On other fronts, I see that Mo Ryan broke the Charles Dance casting while I was in computer hell. Yay, Mo. I'm very pleased by this one, and will post more about it later. Got a couple other castings I should talk about as well... but it has dawned on me that there's no way I can talk about them ALL. Not if I want to do anything else. There are just so many.

The first week of shooting in Belfast went well, I hear, although the weather screwed with them a bit and pretty much confined them to the Paint Hall. Wish I could have been there.

I missed the San Diego Comicon as well, as previously posted. But I did have a presence. IDW announced the DOORWAYS comic, as below... and Bantam Specta debuted the gorgeous new 2011 Ice & Fire calendar, with its stunning Ted Nasmith art.

The calendar is now officially on sale and available, at all good bookstores that sell calendars. Also on Amazon. And they are shipping now. People are already receiving their calendars. Yes, we thought we would try something new this time, like actually sending people the calendars that they order. I hope you like this innovation. (This is not an invitation to rehash the mess we had with the 2009 calendar. That horse is dead. We know, we know. Believe me, we know).

Oh, and I also wanted to mention LIGHTSPEED, a new on-line SF magazine edited by the talented John Joseph Adams. Their current issue reprints a story by some Martin guy from the dawn of time, called "... for a single yesterday." You can read it here:


The way LIGHTSPEED works, JJA informs me, "you can read all of our content for free, but it's serialized on the website throughout the month, one story and one article per week. If you want to read the week 4 story now--or if you just want it in convenient downloadable formats--you can just buy the ebook version."

So: electronic magazines. Wave of the future.

Finally, might mention that I finished a chapter of the DANCE today. I had one last chapter about this particular character -- I will call him Fred -- to finish, and then I am done with him for the book. Of course, in the writing, it turned into three chapters. So I finished a Fred chapter a week ago, and a Fred chapter an hour ago, and yet I STILL have one Fred chapter to finish. Sigh. The horizon recedes continuously before me.

Time to go eat supper. Bye.


Jul. 31st, 2010 07:13 am (UTC)
Did Ty try Malwarebytes?
I was in a similar situation where I ran various anti-virus programs (Eset, Norton, and McAfee) with no success. Finally a co-worker clued me into Malwarebytes. They have a version that you can download and run for free, and I've never seen a virus it couldn't handle. It finds everything from suspicious cookies in your web browser's cache to malicious processes that are practically impossible to track by virtue of existing exclusively in memory. In the worst case Ty will have wasted 45 minutes or so downloading the product and running a full scan. The more likely scenario, I think, is that you finally get rid of the beast and eliminate the distraction.

Ty might even consider upgrading to the full-featured version that actually helps prevent infection, as opposed to cleaning up after the fact. It's my favorite anti-virus program to date because it's very conservative with computer resources unlike most modern resource-hungry anti-virus programs that behave as badly as viruses. The licensed version of Malwarebytes only requires a one-time fee, whereas most anti-virus programs use subscription based pricing models.

First you need to get rid of the virus, and I haven't seen Malwarebytes fail in the past year that I've had it. Their web site is at www.malwarebytes.org. I promise I don't work for them or know anyone who does :) In any case I hope you're able to keep your computer happy. The last thing you need right now is a distraction of this sort. Good luck!
Jul. 31st, 2010 11:32 am (UTC)
Re: Did Ty try Malwarebytes?
I registered on livejournal to recommend Malwarebytes only to find that someone beat me to it. It really is a great tool though. Where other tools only partially remove viruses, trojans and worms, Malwarebytes is able to remove them completely and cleanly.

It doesn't just quarantine the malicious executable and forget about registry values and hidden processes like some other tools. It cleans your system completely.

If you're looking for another free alternativ to block malware, Microsoft Security Essentials is also quite good. It uses very few resources and so far has a good track record in detecting, blocking and removing threats.
Jul. 31st, 2010 01:04 pm (UTC)
Re: Did Ty try Malwarebytes?
I'd like to second trying malwarebytes. I currently work as an IT technician and while my company uses a symantec product on all of our PCs things still slip by. When they do I invariably use malwarebytes to track down the problem.

Jul. 31st, 2010 02:12 pm (UTC)
Re: Did Ty try Malwarebytes?
Seconded. Malwarebytes makes life better.
Jul. 31st, 2010 04:41 pm (UTC)
Re: Did Ty try Malwarebytes?
The virus ate Malwarebytes, which is still on my desktop, but no longer functions.

I have multiple lines of defense. Trend Micro and Spybot are still working. So, allegedly, is AOL SpyZapper, but that one has yet to ever find anything.

Malwarebytes was indeed a heavyweight, until this virus took it out.
Aug. 1st, 2010 10:15 am (UTC)
Re: Did Ty try Malwarebytes?
It really sounds like you need a complete hard drive wipe, and everything reinstalled. If your machine has been compromised that badly, even if it seems to be okay now, you're better off just starting from scratch.
Aug. 6th, 2010 07:09 am (UTC)
Re: Did Ty try Malwarebytes?
I use Kaspersky's and it seems to do a much better job than Norton 2010 or McAfee. You might try that one.


George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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