Derek's Website

What's there to know about me? Below, you'll find a year-by-year outline of my life, which is quite boring to anybody that doesn't know my already. If you're that kind of voyeur, have at it - enjoy whatever you may find in my uninteresting life so far. I promise something interesting will happen soon; we're working on it.

As for everything else, you should check out my blog, which has numerous links to my other projects; look at the column on the right side of that page.

Derek's Life, In Summary
1974 Was born. Did little else.

1975 Celebrated 1st birthday during a hugemungous flood, so I'm told

1976 Learn how to read, or so the legend goes.

1977
1978
 Spent my formitive years talking to the cows.

1979 Grandpa retires, Dad takes over the family farm. Start kindergarten, Mrs. Manke. Younger brother born.

1980 First grade, Mrs. Pederson.

1981 Second grade, Mrs. Olson.

1982 Rural school closes, move to a less-rural school, which involves a hour-long bus ride. 3rd grade, Mrs. Gytri. Younger sister born. IQ test places me in genius range.

1983 Dad leaves farming to go to college, move to Fargo. 4th grade, Mr. Peterson.

1984 5th grade.

1985 6th grade. Acquire 2nd-hand TRS-80 III from uncle Kevin, start writing video games in BASIC.

1986 7th grade, start at Ben Franklin Junior High. Fail advanced placement classes, take regular classes instead. Start summer classes at Trollwood Performing Arts School.

1987 8th grade. Much of this year blocked from my memories due to bullies.

1988 9th grade. Choose not to take language or history classes, have two study halls back to back instead. Take Graphics Arts class a second time, just for fun. Draw comics which appear in the school newspaper, the Almanac.

1989 10th grade. Dad gets a job in Sidney, MT; we move over the summer. First serious girlfriend. Learn that Montana graduation requirements do not need the history or language credits I skipped in the 9th grade.

1990 11th grade. Sign up for a "computer class" which turns out to be a typing course that uses PCs. Go to the brand-new computer lab, equipped with DOS-based IBM PCs, which I have no idea how to use.

1991 12th grade. The school is equipped with Channel 1 video equipment over the summer; I take control over school-produced video production, using whatever equipment is on hand. Start DJing dances to raise money for the science club.

1992 Freshman year. Major: electrical engineering. Work in the EE labs as work-study. Buy first computer:386sx-16, 2MB ram, 80mb hard drive with Windows 3.1.

1993 Sophomore year. Realize my poor math skills hinder my EE career, change to theatre, specializing in the technical aspects. Get my first internet account and email address: ddahlsad@plains.ndsu.nodak.edu.

1994 Junior year. Get a job at Okoboji Summer Theatre through my advisor, which is run by Stephens College in Columbia MO. Apply for a theatre scholarship, get it, move to Missouri right after the Theatre ends its run.

1995 Fail miserably at Stephens College, decide I have no idea what I'm doing with my life. Drop out, move in with friends in Fargo.

1996 Destiny is born, marry Jenny, start working for US Bank.

1997 Start DestinyBBS, an online Bulletin Board service. Set up my first computer network and fileserver. Start designing up webpages for fun.

1998 Shut down DestinyBBS due to lack of interest. Jenny moves out, Destiny remains with me. Start working for Lincoln Mutual Life Insurance Co as marketing coordinator.

1999 Divorce is finalized; Destiny is placed with me. Design my first freelance website, dakref.com. Start blogging.

2000 Set up Derek's Big Website of WalMart Receipts; become overnight internet sensation.

2001 Return to college, part-time, ambitiously trying to complete both the Management and the Computer Technology degree paths. Start freelancing more, designing websites and setting up computers. Destiny starts kindergarten.

2002 My parents move back to Fargo, sleep on our livingroom floor for a month and a half while house-hunting. Lincoln Mutual's marketing department is disbanded by Blue Cross of ND, our parent company. Transfer to clerical position in same company.

2003 Meet Deanna, fall in love. Her divorce goes badly, but still moves to Fargo to live with Destiny and me, bringing along her 14-year-old daughter Allie.

2004 Clerical job at Lincoln Mutual proves too boring for me and interferes with my extracurricular freelancing, so I'm fired for not devoting enough to the job. Begin freelancing for a living. College courses stop, just short of my degree, because Lincoln Mutual's tuition contributions end. Marry Deanna.

2005 Begin typestting and publishing books for a living, while still freelancing for outside companies for extra money; pick up odd jobs and temp jobs to help cover bills.

2006 Publishing business takes off with a few high-profile titles. Parenting hits an all-time high on the difficulty scale. Allie moves to a managed-care facility to help her transition to adulthood despite her autism. Begin working part-time at Information Systems Corporation.

2007 Moved to full-time at ISC, published a few more books.

2008 The Year Of Bankruptcy Paperwork.

2009 Financial difficulties grow; we decide to end the corporation and go at things as sole-proprietors, on a smaller scale.

2010 The Big Move puts us down by Oak Grove, in a much nicer neighborhood but a much smaller house. I begin writing for the High Plains Reader.

2011 The Year of Financial Reconstruction: after bankruptcy and unincorporation, a 'breather' of a year helped get things back on track. Started writing for Prairie Public.

2012 That's now, you fool!