Posts Tagged ‘computer woe’ wrap up

You will be happy to know that has issued a refund to my donors.

Mr. Pratt sent me screenshots this morning of a PayPal payment going to Donor 2 and checks going to my dad and Donor 1. I’m paraphrasing, but if I get permission to post the email, I will — He reiterated the explanation that they were overwhelmed by fraudulent fundraisers back in January. My fundraiser looked to them like a classic example of a fraud, at a time when they were scrambling with no way to tell what was genuine. That is why there was a “delay” in issuing refunds in my case.

I am sympathetic to the issue of my fundraiser looking like a fraud.

I am less sympathetic to the seven month delay and to the woeful lack of communication. I want to be very clear about this.

If the problem had been that my fundraiser had looked like a fraud and they didn’t release the funds to me, that would have been understandable. To reiterate, the problem is that I heard nothing from anyone, except a brief — admittedly undocumented — chat session and that they kept $1410 of what they thought were ill-gotten gains.

Though I do appreciate that Mr. Pratt took time to work with me personally when the situation came to his attention this weekend, I wish it had happened before I raised a public stink.

Again, comments are closed on all but the original post because I think having the context is important to conversation.

Update to my Fundable experience

For the benefit of those of you who read this via rss, LJ or Facebook, I wanted to let you know that I exchanged a series of emails with John Pratt, co-founder of With his permission, I’ve appended the series to the end of my original post about my fundraiser. I did that rather creating a new post because I think it is important to read them in context and chronological order.

Meanwhile, I’m closing comments on this post, because I’d rather have all commentary happen in one place.

My experience with

Edited to add: In 2009, the original shut down. In 2011, Virtucon Ventures ( purchased the domain. They are not associated with the original or Mr. Pratt, and will be re-launching the site in April of 2012.

This page remains as an archival record of my correspondence with Mr. Pratt but should in no way reflect on the new organization.


Edited to add: October 1, 2009. has apparently shut down.

Edited to add: Sunday, August 23rd, 12:50 am

John Pratt, Co-Founder of, has emailed me privately to work out refunds for the people who donated money to me through Fundable.  He has given me permission to post his emails, which I am going to do at the bottom of this post because I do think it is important to read things chronologically.

Further edited to add: Sunday, August 23rd 8:24 am
The paypal refund to Donor 2 has been received.  Mr. Pratt sent screenshots of the checks to Donor 1 and my dad.  Those are scheduled to go out on Monday and arrive by the 31st.

Original Post begins here:

You know. I wasn’t going to blog this, but I just saw a friend thinking about using and realized that I ought to provide a warning.

Back in January, my computer died and several friends and family members offered to chip in and help me buy a new one for my birthday. I found and did a little research on them. There were no negative references to them and they seemed completely legitimate.   Seemed is the operative word here. Continue reading ›

The werewolf test posts

Yesterday I was having trouble with my blog, which are still a mystery. Basically, my RSS feed looks fine everywhere except Google Reader.  While trying to figure out which plugin was causing that, I did a series of test posts, about 30 of them and was tossing a single line of fiction into each by way of apology to the people who had to endure them.

I’ve pulled all the test posts off the website, so they aren’t cluttering my site or LJ friend pages.  But, by request, have assembled all of the fiction into a single post.  It does, by the way, stop abruptly.  Sorry about that. I’m planning on finishing it, but after the novel is done.

Untitled Werewolf Story

The bottle of blood lay on its side on the hardwood floor, nearly empty. Two splotches stained the wood next to it in the pattern of human toes. When Kuang-yu knelt to touch it, the blood was still sticky and bright red. This close, she could spot the fine gray hairs trapped in the blood. She nudged the bottle so it rolled to reveal the white label, stained with red fingerprints. “Paramount Stage Blood.”

That would be reassuring, except the blood on the floor was real and still relatively fresh.

Kuang-yu sighed and wiped the blood off on her jeans before she turned to the man hovering in the doorway. “My best guess is werewolf.” Continue reading ›

If you are reading this…

Then behold! I am on a new server. The real question is: Do my posts show up in RSS again, or am I still relegated to headline only.

The return of the computer woes

After all of the problems with my computer, I waited for two days to make sure it was stable before I started writing on it. It felt so good to be back on a familiar keyboard and with a full size screen, so I got some good words in.

And then my computer crashed again. The blue screen went past so quickly that I can only assume that it was the same error message as before. I turned it back on, to retrieve the file I’d been working on and it almost immediately went down again.

I’ve taken the RAM out, cleaned the connections thoroughly and stuck them back in, but I’ve got no real faith the machine will keep working. I’m using it to go online, as a test, but you know…

I think that shopping for a new computer has just been bumped up on the priority list.

Cautious optimism for computer woes

For those of you following along with my computer woes, you may join me in cautious optimism.  My new harddrive arrived today and I sat down to install it.  Annnnnnd… the computer wouldn’t boot from the recovery disc, which is supposed to be a boot disc.


So I took everything out and put it back in. Still nothing but a black screen, the fan, and a chirp from the dvd drive so I knew it was working.  Curses.  I fiddled with the RAM. Nothing. Again removing the drive to check things and putting it back. By this point I was late for a tea party.

Thank heavens, or I would have continued to bang my head against the wall. So I went off to the party, had a really lovely time, and came home to try again.  First, let me say that everyone who answered my twitter/facebook plea for help is a fantastic person.

I went through suggestions and started from the easiest up.  I put the old drive back in and experienced the exact same symptoms. I returned the new drive.  THEN, in a breath taking move — I know you can hardly stand the suspense — I took the RAM out and put it back in.  The computer worked.


It’s running and hasn’t crashed in an hour so I’m cautiously optimistic that it’s going to be fully operational again. Please, please let it be fixed.

Latest computer woe

wpid-1230442623352.jpgI’ve been struggling with my main computer for some time. That’s part of why I got the eee pc. The Kowal Portable been crashing a lot and I was afraid to write on it because it would go down with no warning. I’d get a blue screen of death, but it always flashed past too fast to read. Last night after one of these, it wouldn’t restart, so I decided to do a full system restore, back to factory settings. I back up regularly, so I haven’t lost any data at least.

It hung twice during the restore, but the third one succeeded. And then, as I was still in the setup, it crashed, but this time the BSod hung around long enough to actually read. That’s the lovely picture there. We’ve spent today trouble-shooting and have gotten as far as eliminating the RAM as the problem.

Meanwhile, I’m going to be using the eee as my primary computer. Fortunately, I can touch type on the thing, but it takes a firmer stroke than the Kowal Portable. In the short-term, we’re going to get a new harddrive but in the long-term, I’m in the market for a new computer. Underneath the steampunk exterior, the Kowal Portable was an Averatec 1500.

I’m opening the floor for suggestions on a new laptop. For starters, don’t suggest a mac; I’m happy being a pc girl.

It needs to be able to handle graphic design and some audio. I prefer a larger screen, but don’t need a widescreen. I’ll probably mostly travel with the eee, so I’m not as fanatical about it being thin and lightweight as I was before.

Besides that, the field is open. Your thoughts?

My invisibility

Recently, depending on where you see me, I might have seemed to vanish for a couple of reasons.

Livejournal: A button got flipped which clicked “Date out of Order” on all of my posts. If that’s set, they don’t show up on friends pages. So, if you want to click through to my page and scroll back through you can read about my favorite childhood toy, a sale, AMC columns and assorted other things. I’d wondered why my number of readers was down.

Gmail: I accidentally deleted all of my gmail contacts. Brilliant, I know. I wasn’t too worried because all the emails were still there BUT there’s a fair chance that I’m no longer on your chat list. If you used to see me all the time, and don’t anymore, reinvite me to chat.

Facebook: Twitter has stopped updating my status.  I’m hoping that’s just temporary.


I think that’s it, but lord knows what else might have happened.

Twitters for 11-21-08

  • 10:41 The downside to giving a dinner party with “correct” place-settings is dealing with the ridiculous amount of silver afterwards. #
  • 11:53 The upside to giving a dinner party with “correct” place-settings is that I love my china and silver. I just clearly need staff for cleanup. #
  • 12:26 Whoops.Got our phone bill.All of my Obama calls while in the Calgary airport in were roaming charges. A good cause, but tax deductible? #
  • 12:30 Good timing. My phone just died. As in broken. Is the universe telling me something? #
  • 12:50 If you were getting a smart phone & a t-mobile customer, what would you get? #
  • 14:05 Curses. If I buy the phone at a store, they can’t let me upgrade unless I switch to an NYC number. How stupid is that? Not doing it. #
  • 16:52 Finally leaving for Philcon with my new phone. Played with the blackberry and the G1 in the store, settled on the G1. (Hush, Michael.) #
  • 19:51 I’m on the River Line heading into Camden. So far, its been painless transit. #
  • 21:14 I’m at Philcon and heading for the meet the pros reception. #
  • 21:57 OMG I left the Campbell tiara at home. Anyone coming out to Philly from NYC tomorrow? Daft, I am. #
  • 22:40 I’m on a panel on websites for writers and explaining twitter. Got anything pithy to say? #
  • 23:23 Thanks all for the pithy thoughts, we were trying to demonstrate what twitter is and what it’s good for. #
  • 23:24 So, Philcon? Free wifi, which automatically makes this the best con, evar. And well organized thus far. #

Touch pad woes

I think my computer has gone insane. It was scrolling to the bottom of every page in any program I opened in Windows, so I switched over to Linux (I have a dual boot right now) and rather than doing that, it is randomly opening tabs. I suspect that what’s actually happening is a potential short in the touch pad. Which sucks.

Mostly it is annoying because I want to listen to audio as I work.

New RAM or not new RAM

Rob picked up some new RAM for my computer, reasoning that it might help with some of the sluggishness problems I’ve been having. Alas, when installed, the computer turns on but fails to boot. So I pulled them out and put the old RAM back in.

I’m sure it’s my imagination but the darn thing seems slower than before. It is five years old, so I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that it’s cranky.

Twitters for 9-8-08

  • 13:39 I never hear my computer’s fan in NYC. At my parents’ house the same fan is so darn loud. #
  • 16:11 I’m frustrated by how often my site is goes off-line for exceeding CPU quotas. Want to suggest another hosting company or fiddle with MySQL? #
  • 16:46 I hate customer service that does not pay attention to what I am saying. #
  • 19:20 It is raining so hard, the trees in the yard look like they are behind five layers of unlit scrim.Lightning and thunder come simultaneously. #
  • 19:44 Seem to have solved CPU issues by installing Super-Cache for WP. Or possibly from getting rid of random photos in sidebar. #