Tag Archives: Steve Kubien

Rob’s Update: A Sword For Striking

Week 34 of 2018

Greetings all

It’s been a fun week for me. I have been settling into my new desk, which is awesome. I haven’t completely nested, but I love it. Many thanks to my friend Johan for building it for me.

I’ve also started a new weekly article on my blog called “Mag Review.” I have about 700 SF/F mags from the 30s to the 70s and each week I’ll read through one, reviewing each story and riffing off whatever strikes my fancy. The first one looked the Spaceway of June, 1954 and you can find it here: https://robhowell.org/blog/?p=1313.

I’m doing that exercise for a variety of reasons. I’ve had this collection for a while and only read a few of them. I’ve needed to fix that. Also, it’s good professional development, both as a writer and to spark ideas. Plus I know a lot of people who will enjoy reading these reviews. Like my interviews, I think it’s a win-win for everyone.

My big writing announcement is that my story A Sword for Striking was accepted for one of the new Four Horsemen Anthologies. I really appreciate Chris and Mark for giving me a part of their sandbox. Next week I’ll start working on The Feeding of Sorrows, which is the next chapter in the Foresters.

In terms of writing, I’ve been nagging at my short stories. I’ve also been plotting some others. I’ve not really done much with them in terms of different number of words, in fact I’m not changing the totals from last week, but I’ve been polishing and thinking, which is hard to quantify.

Projects and ideas are starting to flow like mad, actually. I spent today with a writing buddy brainstorming ideas.

So I think I better go write.

Current Playlist Song

“Piano Man” by Billy Joel is playing overhead at Brewbaker’s. I know that it’s overplayed in some ways, but I actually really love the way he captured the various personalities at a bar.

Quote of the Week

Oliver Hazard Perry died on this day in 1819. After the battle of Lake Erie he provided a brilliant and succinct after action report.

“We have met the enemy and they are ours; two ships, two brigs, one schooner and one sloop.”
– Oliver Hazard Perry

News and Works in Progress

  • CB (6,526)
  • AFS (2,681)

Recent Blog Posts and Wiki Additions

Upcoming Events


This week’s spotlight is on my friend Steve Kubien, who is a fantastic woodturner. You can find his interview at: https://robhowell.org/blog/?p=1306.

Today’s Weight: 388.4

Updated Word Count: 177, 026

Shijuren Wiki: 874 entries

Four Horsemen Wiki: 376 entries

Wiki updates will resume this week, so expect those latter numbers to change.

Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at rob@robhowell.org. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.

Have a great week, everyone.

Rob Howell

Currently Available Works

If you think you received this email incorrectly or wish to be unsubscribed, please send an email to shijuren-owner@robhowell.org

Interview – Steve Kubien

This week’s interview is with a friend I met in the SCA. As you’ll see he’s a woodturner, taking chunks of wood and making beautiful things out of them.

He’s also a really generous guy. When he sees that someone’s lost a mug, or had a bad day, or whenever he thinks one of his cups will brighten someone’s day, he makes one and gives it to them.

Interview – Steve Kubien

What is your quest?

Steve Kubien
Steve Kubien

I am a woodturner. I use the patterns and textures of wood to make cremation urns and bowls (mostly). Each of these creations is as unique as person they are for or the circle of friends who use them daily.

What is your favorite color?

Favourite colours are blue and green, though they have little to do with my work (generally). As a turner, I try to create curves which are pleasing to the eye and feel good in the hands. The easier way to describe this in a concrete way is to look at an egg. Every tiny segment of the shell is a wonderful, perfect curve. Stand it on the narrow end and you have a classic vase. Use the lower half and you have a bowl that looks, feels and functions marvelously. I make parts of the curve of eggs.

What is the average flying speed of an unladen paint brush?

Urn by Steve Kubien
Urn by Steve Kubien

Completing pieces is often difficult for me. From a technical stand point, the final stages of making an urn are the most risky (in terms of ruining a piece). Thus, I often get stuck in ruts where a number of pieces are almost complete, but not quite.

I am also not a fast worker. As an independent artist, that’s a big disadvantage.

What are the powers of your personal Holy Hand Grenade?

I am very good at finding a nice curve.

Green Urn by Steve Kubien
Green Urn by Steve Kubien

Lightning Round

  • Favorite Muppet?  On the 9th day, God created Kermit. He would have done it on the 8th but he was busy creating Led Zeppelin.
  • Crunchy or Creamy? Crunchy, but not so much to break teeth.
  • Favorite Sports Team? Whoever is playing against the Toronto Maple Lrafs
  • Cake or Pie?  Apple pie or death!
  • Favorite Chip Dip?  Helluva Good Dip, original
  • Wet or Dry?  Currently?
  • Favorite Musical Performer We’ve Never Heard Of?  Derek Trucks
  • Whisky or Whiskey?  Bourbon (Rob’s Note: My current favorite bourbon is the New Holland Beer Barrel Bourbon casked in the same casks as their Dragon’s Milk Imperial Stout. Not expensive, but delicious)
  • Favorite Superhero? Thor
  • Steak Temperature? Pass it through a warm room. (Rob’s Note: The internal temperature of a cow is 107 Fahrenheit. That’s about what my sweetie prefers as well 🙂 )
  • Winter, Spring, Summer, or Fall? Fall
  • Best Game Ever? The Riddle Game
  • Coffee or Tea? Tea

What question(s) would you like to ask me? 

Why do you do this?

Rob’s Answer: Well, some reasons are cynical and some less so. The cynical reason is that this gives free publicity to people I like while at the same time encouraging their fans, readers, and friends to visit my blog. Some of those will continue to read my stuff. I

I also like knowing a little more about my friends. Given how often people stay at my house, there’s a non-zero chance knowing how people like their steak or what kind of whisk(e)y they drink might be useful to know. Plus, who doesn’t want to know everyone’s favorite Muppet?

n short, it’s a win-win thing for all of us, and I like positive sum games. And it’s fun.

Tell me again where we can find your stuff?

Thanks to Steve Kubien for taking the time to answer my questions.

If you have any suggestions or comments about this interview format, let me know so I can keep tweaking it.

Thanks for reading. If you’re interested in any of the other interviews I’ve done, you can find them all here: https://robhowell.org/blog/?cat=326.

If you are a creator, especially an independent creator, and you want to be spotlighted in a future interview, email me at rob@robhowell.org.

Also, if you want to join my mailing list, where I’ll announce every interview, as well as what’s going on in my life, go to www.robhowell.org and fill out the form (Name and Email Address) or drop me an email and I’ll add you.