Question: Craig- we have purchased a Vermont Castings- DutchWest. From the information I've been reading in your website- making sure you have good dry wood is very important in having your wood burn properly. We have been attempting to burn some wood we were told was "seasoned". I'm wondering if it was in fact seasoned. We don't seem to be able to keep the stove lit properly. I've printed out the instructions on building a fire and will try that soon. We do have some unseasoned wood given to us by a neighbor. My husband and I have been discussing storing the wood as it dries. He doesn't seem to even want to put a tarp over the wood. What is the best method of seasoning the wood short of building a "wood shed"? He doesn't want to bring the wood into the attached garage for fear of bring insects (especially termites) into the house. Is this a valid fear? Answer: You MUST cover the wood- at the very minimum. Rain water will soak right in- even if the wood is well seasoned. I would bring one-two weeks worth into the garage- and keep one days worth inside near the stove.Also- the manufacturers directions for "break-in fires" doesn't mention using the converter air supply but the main air supply located in the front on both sides- doesn't seem to provide enough air to maintain the fire. If we attempt to add larger pieces to the fire- it seems to smother the fire and we are left with partially burned logs.If your stove is not burning well- then it's either your wood or your draft. If your chimney is not storing enough- a stove will not burn correctly. Be sure to leave your catalytic bypass open during all your seasoning fires. You can also open the ashpan door for a few minutes to try to start the chimney drafting upwards. Be sure to close it after 5 minutes or so.You must have good wood- and a good draft to properly enjoy your stove. Lastly, read the articles on starting and keeping a fire at Hearth.com.