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April 1 Roundup

Feel free to add your favorites in the comments. (Let’s avoid the cruel/hurtful jokes, thank you.)

18 Days to Deadline

Haven’t been blogging much lately. TERMINAL UPRISING is due to my editor on tax day. I therefore need to finish writing it.

I also need to finish doing our taxes, for that matter.

Anyway, blogging will likely continue to be minimal for the next few weeks. All of my words need to go into my manuscript. (I’m doing this blog post with leftover words that didn’t make the cut. Like “moist” and “very” and “that” and “elocution.”)

I’m happy with how this revision is coming together. Added two bits today I really liked — one a moment of awe and wonder, and the other an alien snot joke. So, you know, typical Jim book.

Hope you’re all having a good week!

Signal Boosting Some Friends

Lots of folks doing cool/interesting/nifty stuff lately. I figured I’d put some of them together into a convenient blog post.

1. Stephanie Burgis and Tiffany Trent have been coediting an anthology called THE UNDERWATER BALLROOM SOCIETY. If you sign up for the newsletter, you can be entered to win one of fifty advance review e-copies. Authors include Laura Anne Gilman, Jenny Moss, Cassandra Khaw, Patrick Samphire, Y. S. Lee, and more.

2. Kristen Britain is doing a Kickstarter for the Green Rider Book Soundtrack. This is part of the 20th anniversary celebration for the book, and it looks like she’s close to hitting her goal. The music is composed by Kristina A. Bishoff.

3. Robert V. S. Redick wrote a blog post about the creation of his new epic fantasy, Master Assassins, which just came out. He talks in part about how feminism influenced the writing, including this line: “Being a feminist means always asking myself what those demons are up to. We all like to be ‘woke,’ but a white man can get away with nodding off any time.”

4. Juliet McKenna does a cover reveal and talks about the inspiration for her forthcoming book The Green Man’s Heir.

Feel free to boost your own friends and their awesome projects in the comments! No self-boosting, though. At the very least, make a friend come over and do that for you 😉

Diabetes Upgrade: New Pump and CGM

 

After several months of back-and-forth with the insurance company, medical supply company, and my doctor’s office, last week I went in to get set up on a new Minimed 670G insulin pump. The thing I’ve been really excited about is that this pump links to a continuous glucose monitor (CGM).

For the past 20 years, I’ve checked my blood sugar by pricking my finger about six times/day and putting a drop of blood onto a test strip. The CGM checks every five minutes, and gives me something close to a real-time graph showing my blood sugar levels and how those levels are changing.

I still need to do the finger-pricks, since the CGM isn’t quite as accurate, and needs to be calibrated. But this means I get much quicker warnings if my sugar starts to go high or low. It also gives me a lot more data to better refine how I take insulin to keep things under control.

Ironically, this came up as I was working on this blog post. I think there was an issue with the site where I plugged the pump into my body, which was causing me to not absorb insulin as well as I should. As a result, my sugar was high. It’s currently 255, to be exact.

670G Insulin Pump

Thanks to the CGM, I’d been alerted that it was going high, and had been able to monitor the rise and decide to change the set. Without it, I’d have waited until my next finger-prick.

You can see I’ve already come down a little bit from the peak when I changed my site. Theoretically, that line should keep coming down until it gets into the green-shaded area between the two horizontal red lines.

The only problem so far is that I tend to overreact. It takes time for the body to process insulin or digest and process food. If I take insulin now, I won’t see an immediate effect. Likewise if I eat, say, a chocolate bar, it could be 15 minutes or more before my sugar starts to rise. So if I’m high, I might take a correction dose of insulin. Ten minutes later, I’m still high! What the heck? So the temptation is to take another dose. Unfortunately, “stacking” insulin like this can result in an overcorrection, and suddenly my sugar is too low.

But I’m getting used to it, and I haven’t had any severe problems.

The other inconvenience is I now have not one but two things plugged into my abdomen: the insulin pump site, and the CGM sensor.

Warning: pale belly pics behind the cut.

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Jim C. Hines