Sunday, August 11, 2013

Shark Week in Review

I think Sharknado caused one of my strangest weeks yet. We all have these times, when the usual is flipped, like seeing sharks hurling through the air, biting helicopters.

As a story writer, the unusual week is not good. We like our little safe worlds, where we can sit in our favorite spot(s) and create away, rolling in our stories, living our characters' lives.

With a computer going down and a new one purchased on Monday, this week was like those weird Sharknado scenes. The choice between a laptop and a desktop was difficult, but I settled for the desktop, a Mac. Uh-huh, decided to change from 20+ years of PC to Apple, an entire change, which hasn't been too bad. While I can't compare, I don't think it was any more difficult to learn than Windows 8.

The store tech moved my files into the new computer. Some couldn't be moved, and the old PC had just enough juice to be able to send the files e-mail. I still have to transfer the command keys to my ergonomic keyboard. Yes, the keyboards are different, but this old keyboard has really helped and I'm keeping it.

SW Missouri flooded in that same week. One day the road to town was blocked off. It's a mess down there and people had to be evacuated. My rain gutters clogged, and getting the ladder out and cleaning them wasn't fun.

Because thunderstorms were frequent, I would just bring up my new computer and have to bring it down and unplug. I unplug. This after seeing stuff fried elsewhere with surge protectors installed. I unplug. So all week, plug/unplug, work awhile, hear thunder, bring down. (We had sunshine on Saturday, our first.)

My story waiteth for its world to be set right and to begin wherever I left off. Okay, one of my favorite programs isn't going to work on this new baby. I'm hoping that Bad Wolf Software will come through with the programs I love. Then my website program won't work either, so that has to be resolved, and a Bluehost tech helped me with plans for that.

Along the way, several other writers really helped this week with how-tos. Writers share/hand down. I hope to repay them for their time and effort. That's a little unspoken/written word, folks, and you're hearing it here: If another writer helps you individually, that's taking their time--and they're probably glad to give it--but if you can some day, try to repay them for that chunk of time and energy.

YouTube is super for how-tos. Anything you don't know how to do, like change these keyboard commands, YouTube has a video.

Moving along with installation of new programs, what is this thing, and eyestrain, the week has passed with decisions to change this blog mightily, this after years. (BTW, I sucked out writer how-tos and hope to make a free download.) It's time to refresh.

Saturday brought that sunshine and a beautiful writers program, presented by Toni Somers of Sleuths Ink (mystery group) in Springfield, MO. This may have been the most unusual and mind provoking program I've experienced in years of attending writerly stuff, including conferences. Her program: Three Elements in Bible Stories (And Throughout Literature).

Somers really stirred the audience into thinking about plots and what books used these plots. Her theme was that there isn't anything really new. As writers, we put our own spin on these plots, make our own characters. The program was thought provoking and stayed with me for hours. I hope Somers will share this program with other writers.

I refer to all of this unable to get back to my story as Novel Interruptus in another post. Since I've been dealing with office and home reorganization for some time, writing has slowed to a molasses flow. Last night, all souped up with Somers' talk, I dived back into my suspense, which is about halfway finished. If I can just get these keyboard commands switched, if I can just get my blog changed to another format, if...

And it's all due to Sharknado. Have you ever had a week like this, slogging through things that need to be done, while your story is hanging out there, waiting?

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