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Friday, February 10, 2017

The Writer's Life 2/10 - Words

Microsoft Word is a great program, but it's not perfect and I doubt it ever will be. It doesn't understand colloquialisms and certain quirks in the English language, which is not necessarily bad, as it forces one to pause and think. The past few days I've been working to eliminate one glitch from a novel, Close to the Edge, and resubmitting it to Create Space, an affiliate of Amazon. Copying the
manuscript from Google Docs and transferring it to a regular Word file generated a lot of line breaks and left many paragraphs without indentation. While scanning to find them all, I was often slowed by the sight of words and phrases underlined in red, indicating error. Here are five examples, highlighted in bold font, that confuse the program: Where d’you think? he said to himself. (The program assumes it should be two separate sentences.); She complained that he was killing himself, that he worked too hard...  ("That" is overused, but not in this case.); “Hi, Vin!” the rider shouted. (This is a recurring instance - the unrecognized nickname.); Six more, he told himself, the seventh milestone in sight, just 200 yards away, another pedestrian bridge. (The program wants to insert an unnecessary "and" before "another."); He was now beside the railing... (The program thinks it should be "besides.")... In an email this morning, CS informed that the ISBN numbers I'd used were incorrect. They were from the novel's first incarnation at 1st Books/Authorhouse. Kudos to the eagle eye who caught that.

Trevor Bauer, a pitcher for the Cleveland Indians, seems fearless. He takes to Twitter to criticize liberal orthodoxy. He was very active yesterday, starting with the following tweet: "Really annoyed that @Apple and @Twitter continue to flood my phone with liberal slanted anti trump articles. fair and equal reporting? No?" Not surprisingly, he was deluged with responses, either pro or con. He
returned fist pump emojis to those who supported him, told fans who were unfollowing him “good riddance,” and addressed his thoughts on climate change. He declared himself “one of the most scientific players in MLB” and questioned whether Barack Obama was born in the United States. At last count he'd sent out 135 responses. During the first Democratic debate last January, Bauer said he was “appalled” at what he was hearing. I'm not crazy about political arguing on social media, but it's encouraging to see a young man risk the scorn of his peers, although he should get his ego in check. It will be interesting to see where this goes. In 2016 Bauer was 12-8, 4.26 ERA, 0-2, 5.27 in the post season. (From Yahoo Sports, in my own words.)

From Yahoo's Odd News: "Six officials in central China's Hubei province have been punished for dozing off in a meeting on how to motivate lazy bureaucrats... they had to write self-criticisms and make public apologies." Big government in a nutshell.

It was too cold and icy for the floating book shop today. I'll give it a shot tomorrow - if I get lucky with parking.
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