• Member Since 25th Mar, 2015
  • offline last seen 10 hours ago

The Hat Man

A man with a love of top hats and the finer things in life. Like aged rum. And UNICORNS.

More Blog Posts316

  • 3 weeks
    New Iron Horse Art: "For Grant (Happy to See You Too)"

    Art, as usual, by my longtime pal and illustrator, Colby “Greenfinger” Green. Commissioned in tribute to Grant Imahara, the character Umahara is based on.

    Take care, folks, and see you again soon.

    6 comments · 104 views
  • 11 weeks
    New Story/Chapter: "Consuming Darkness" (Guest Chapter)

    My pal Zontan over at "Quills and Sofas Speedwriting" wrote a cute, very funny story. As a challenge, I wrote a continuation! He loved it and decided to publish it (with my permission of course)! If you like my comedic, feelsy writing, I'm sure it'll be up your alley. (Also, check out Zon's other stories when you get a chance, like Truth

    Read More

    2 comments · 101 views
  • 11 weeks
    Rest in Peace, Mr. Imahara (Tribute)

    For those of you who haven't heard, Grant Imahara of Mythbusters fame passed away on Monday. He was someone I admired as a robot enthusiast and he inspired the Iron Horse character Umahara. Mr. Imahara was 49.

    Read More

    13 comments · 280 views
  • 17 weeks
    New story is here! "Rising Above"

    A one-shot about overcoming the things that keep you down. Only one of which is gravity...

    1 comments · 76 views
  • 29 weeks
    Story Recommendation: "Good Changes, Mostly"

    Much of my work - like The Iron Horse or the recent "Spirit of Radio" - deals with the impact of technology on society. A very recent story here on the site takes this theme and creates a beautiful tale of change and hope as

    Read More

    4 comments · 218 views

Delays suck. Here's why they've been happening... · 1:43am Jun 24th, 2018

Okay everyone, I feel like I should explain the recent delays on "Human After All." First, I apologize profusely for the inconsistency with updates. With The Iron Horse, I tried and mostly succeeded at getting a new chapter out every two weeks. I feel really bad to keep you all waiting for chapters, but I do have my reasons. If you want to know them, keep reading after the break.

Reason #1: “Why Not My Father?”

My recent Father’s Day special story just jumped out at me all of a sudden and I knew I had to write it or else it would die on the vine. While nothing spectacular, I really wanted to do this story, and it cut into writing for “Human After All.” This is why I usually only write one story at a time: time spent on one story means less time on another.

Reason #2: Accreditation

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a teacher. Well, part of being an educator means dealing with accreditation institutions. Part of why it took a while between The Iron Horse and anything related to it was that I’ve been working hard at the English school where I work to draft responses to our accrediting agency and to shore up loose ends in our curriculum. More recently, we were gearing up for their site visit to inspect the place.

The recent Season 8 premier was deja vu all over again in a way, except that our site reviewers were really nice people and Chancellor Neighsay is a massively racist a:yay:hole. But still, lots of work and stress.

Reason #3: Work in General

A lot of teachers get the whole summer off. I, however, do not. I get most of July off, which is nice, but during the summers I teach summer sessions. Normally our sessions are 8 weeks long (or about half a semester). Summer sessions, however, are 6 weeks. But that doesn’t mean they’re easier; it means the days are longer and we have to cram 8 weeks of learning into just 6 weeks.

Point is, it’s left me pretty tired and a little stressed out.

On top of all that, my department is in the midst of a budget crisis. What that means is that they might have to downsize the school or downgrade full-time jobs like mine to part-time jobs that make half as much, and that’s not really tenable for me. So, on top of the increased workload, I’ve also been hunting for new jobs, and that takes time and effort too.

So, yeah, all of these things have been keeping me from regular updates, and I feel really rotten about it. One of my biggest pet peeves is stories that take forever to update, and falling victim to that pitfall is the last thing I wanted to happen. I'm really sorry. :fluttershysad:

Now, I don’t want to complain. Rest assured, the finale of “Human After All” will happen soon. All this means is that you’ll have to wait just a smidge longer, and I wanted you all to understand why things have been so spotty.

Anyway, you guys know I appreciate each and every one of you. Without your support for Turing Test and my work in general, I’m not certain how far I would have taken my writing on this site. It means a lot to me an I appreciate your patience. :heart:

Until next time!

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Comments ( 12 )

Don't sweat it too much. I kind of figured it would take longer with the other story, and irl issues crop up all the time. I hope for the best with your job.

I don't mind delays personally, as long as it gets released eventually, as I know it will.

Thanks for keeping us updated, and best of luck with your job!

Hat man, I am asking you. Worry 'bout yourself first. I understand how reality can get in the way, sometimes. So good luck.

I can't wait to read the rest of "Human After All". Also, "Why Not My Father?" was pretty good.

How many other stories are you going to create for this series?

Signing out, VShuffler42


How many other stories are you going to create for this series?

That's hard to say. On one hand, I worry about getting stuck in a box and things becoming stale if I overplay it. But, on the other hand, I really enjoy writing Turing Test stories and there are lots of ideas I have about future installments.

So, for the time being, Turing Test isn't going anywhere, but I can't say when or what the next possible tales might be. We'll just have to see where the future takes us. :twilightsmile:

Thanks to you and...
...thanks to you both as well for your kind words and patience. I'm certain things will work out, but it just remains to be seen how and in what way. I have a good record for landing on my feet with this sort of stuff. :raritywink:

Just take the time you need. literally (from what I can tell) almost no one is gonna try to rush you since that is almost one of the best ways to lower the quality of a story and frequency of chapter updates: making you overly stressed.
You can ignore the rest but....
Also just jumping on what VShuffler42 said about other story ideas: I can't believe there hasn't been a side story of Turing Test vs Pony Garry Kasparov in chess! You even had a chapter title called "Deep Blue" and the main antagonist of the arc had a chess cutie mark:rainbowlaugh:I mean, to me the trope of ponies being mean to Turing and questioning her intelligence is not really losing touch and you could even have the story take place shortly after "Human After All" (unless something significant plot-related prevents that).
It does not need to belong but realistically speaking for world building, people/ponies who have questioned machine intelligence or compared man vs machine often point to chess and other NP problems to argue their views.
> If you are actually considering writing this in the future might wanna check this out http://www.documentarymania.com/player.php?title=Game%20Over%20Kasparov%20and%20the%20Machine

Good luck with work, and please don't worry about the delays.

So you are a teacher, huh. My respect for you just increased tenfold. I thought I wanted to be a math teacher, but after one year of education courses in college, I said “NOPE!” and dropped it to do just math.

Good luck with your work and the job hunting!

I perfectly understand how life goes sometimes. I'm currently working about 65 hours/week between two jobs. Life sucks at that point, and there isn't usually a whole lot of time (or energy) for much else.

Good luck with everything! And especially the job hunt!

You've been reading The Iron Horse and my other stories with a 65 hour/week schedule?! HOW?! :pinkiegasp:

Jeez. You have that little time and you choose to spend it reading my stories? I just...
Oh, come here, you. (hugs) :heart:

Initially, I never wanted to go into teaching either. I got my B.A. in straight up English studies and got a job as an assistant language teacher in Japan (one of my minors is in Japanese), decided I actually liked it, came back and got my Master's in Teaching English as a Second Language. It's a good gig, very satisfying work, though I wish it paid a little better... though, really, when is that not the case?

Thing is, pedagogy is useful, but overrated compared to experience. I learned a lot of what I do by doing it, not by studying educational theory or things like that. When you boil it down, a good teacher is

  1. Knowledgeable about their subject
  2. Able to find ways to make the subject interesting
  3. Patient
  4. Kind
  5. Firm (stick to your rules, but don't be too strict)
  6. Enthusiastic
  7. Realistic about goals and workload (for students and oneself)

I don't think it's much more that that. But that's just my take. :twilightsmile:

You're too kind. I have time here and there (breaks and lunch and things), and your stories are simply un-put-down-able. With The Iron Horse, especially, I found I had to rip myself away simply so I could return to work. :fluttercry:

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