Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Joy of Rewrites

Ask most any author and they’ll tell you that editing and rewrites are the least fun part of creating story. To my delighted surprise, that hasn’t been the case as I read and reread the first seven novelettes from my shapeshifter series.

Last week I even stumbled upon a better way of proofreading. It started when I created a multi-faceted Scrivener document. Within that software I created a separate folder for each of the fifteen tales.

Meanwhile I’ve been rewriting each installment within Microsoft Word. This old 2003 programming actually makes the process faster and more efficient than Scrivener by better correcting little spelling mistakes as my fingers fly across the keyboard.

Then, a week or so ago, I decided to read books one through seven yet again (!) before reworking number eight. It’s amazing how many tiny tweaks continue improving the flow and continuity of my prose. Now comes the probably strange sounding, monotonous step.

Wanting to keep my Word and Scrivener documents both up to date, I could go through the entire MSWord document and copy and paste it fully into Scrivener. Makes sense, right?

Instead, I started copying and pasting edited passages – most often paragraph by paragraph – as I retyped them.

I know. Tedious. Right?

But I plan to continue in this manner, at least with these most polished pieces. I find it’s helping unearth little tidbits missed in countless prior passes. For example, when 'must' should have been spelled 'much' (???).

How about you? If you are a writer, how do you feel about rewrites? Do you love them or hate them? Do you have any tips on how to best catch mistakes?

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Monday, February 27, 2017

Scam Alert

Living with a computer expert, I have long been schooled on how to keep my computer clean. It’s why my Facebook activity is so limited and I generally avoid ‘free’ software.

In my email today I saw something supposedly from Bravenet about my account being deleted. I paused before opening the message; did I ever sign up for Bravenet? If so, I didn't remember it.

So I went to the official Bravenet website and clicked on the password recovery button. My email address was not found. So please be warned. I probably avoided something nasty invading my laptop.

If you see the same message, here is a quick link to Bravenet’s account recovery page:

 
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Thursday, February 23, 2017

Cent-Ar


There is something about our home that draws centipedes. I think it might have something to do with the semi-rural property edging our sleepy subdivision.

These creatures are not small. They are only marginally shy. One spring the creepy crawlers were everywhere.

I once saw a cheeky monster headed right toward me where I lay across my bed writing in a journal - in broad daylight. Another got into an open DVD case. When I picked it up to put the disk away, the centipede went right down the neck of my blouse.

So the other day should have been no big deal. But I saw it during my morning ablutions. Feeling vulnerable, I called to my partner, who proceeded to not even see the monstrosity hiding in the lower corner of the glass shower stall.

“How is it that I see these things everywhere and you never spot them at all?”

“You have cent-ar.”

I stared blankly. Don't judge. It was early.

“Get it? Radar? Cent-ar? Centaur!”

Yeah. We are geeks. And as previously mentioned, we laugh a lot in this house.

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Monday, February 20, 2017

They're Back

My partner has been enjoying zen moments watching the Hanover, Pennsylvania live eagle cam. So I decided to share again.

Here's the link:

https://hdontap.com/index.php/video/stream/bald-eagle-live-cam

The female is reportedly very active, turning her eggs every few minutes. I really didn't know; I've been too busy with rewrites. ~grin~ Happy viewing!

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Thursday, February 16, 2017

How Time Flies



It’s hard to believe another birthday has come and gone. I don’t do much to celebrate them anymore. Looking back on all the stupid stuff I did in my youth and didn’t die is quite adequate.

I mean, seriously, breaking up with a switchblade carrying hothead on a dark and lonely street? Painting my fingernails while driving to work? Distracting my driver by definitely not painting his nails?

At least I’ve retained my gleefully licentious nature, as you can tell, and enough loved ones to patiently laugh at my lurid joking. But now I’m just a dirty old lady instead of a hotly pursued paramour.

Loping toward the surprisingly attainable half century mark, I can say I am healthier than as a girl. My body is strong, if not exactly fit. And I can still swim like the otters, which I used to joke were probably my real parents.

It is regretful that I’m now shaped more like a manatee. I also miss the joy of swimming a murky lake with a young lover. It’s amazing what a couple can do when one of you is virtually unsinkable.

Ah, memories. Thank heaven I still have them.

So, my dears, do you do anything special to celebrate your birthday?

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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Mystery Gadget

Can anyone guess what this is? I found it far back in a drawer before a kitchen renovation a few years ago. The brand name stamped at the top is Wolfmerman's. This hand-me-down came along when I left home in 1990.

Sorry About the Focus - a Tricky Tool to Photograph
Can you make out the plastic hinges to either lower side? It opens up. But first, you put the tines through your English muffin (I wonder what these muffins are called across the pond - Keith, my friend, a little help here? ~grin~).

Photographing food attractively is an art that eludes me
Be sure to slide the bread on far as possible. Then you pull apart the tabbed plastic handles.

Magic!
I learned it's called the Muffin Master (nice alliteration!) and is still available today. The tool definitely makes separating these muffins easier. Just be sure to wash off the blueberry stickiness afterward.

Happy muffin mastering!

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Saturday, February 11, 2017

Fun with Corel Painter 2017

For years now I have sat on a baker's dozen of short stories. They feature shapeshifters, angst, and lots of erotica. Recently I started rewrites and found myself falling in love with the characters all over again.

The male werewolf protagonist is way more of a licentious bad boy, his wereleopardess girlfriend more volatile. It's a blast to explore.

Meanwhile, I have a model's photograph that suits the look of my mid '90's era rebellious hair band holdover of an aspiring rock star (whew - that was a mouthful).

I know his look wouldn't be everyone's cup of tea but I adore him. Yet I found myself wanting to toy with his image, make him appear more ethereal. But how? After a quick search I found a free month's trial of Corel Painter 2017.

It's pricey and I'm not sure I could justify spending the money. All the same, with no kickback from the company, I want to give a shout-out to Corel. The product is amazing and a live chat with customer service proved fast, friendly, and informative.

Warning: half naked man ahead. Probably NSFW, so I'll make you scroll down if you want to see...

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On the left is the lovely model au naturel. I could eat him with a spoon just as he is...


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To the right is my tweaked image. I'm just tickled this old gal progressed so far learning the software in three days, but is the blue too much like a merman? Let me know what you think (as long as you like him ~grin~).

'Nicky' was very patient as I lavished attention upon one nipple
If anyone knows this model's name I'd be very grateful (I'm not hopeful, this image is nearly a decade old).

~