When rhinos are involved

At  Myths of the Mirror, Diana a couple of days ago was saying it’s now time for a mini-wrimo. (I’m the lazy one who can’t respond at once.)

Shortly explained – it’s something you can do instead of participating in NaNoWriMo. Which I know about, but have never done. A couple of years ago, I instead tried to publish one blog post per day during November, as was suggested, and it could be anything at all. I failed. It was a total stress to HAVE TO post something every day for thirty days.

But Dianas idéa seems much better! We can choose anything we do – as long as it includes writing. How much, for how long time, certain amounts of words… etc (Please visit her blog-post so I won’t have to write it all down here. I’m a lazy-butt as you know.)

In short – decide for yourself the options, but then stick to what you have set for yourself.

I, who have had huge problems on how to start to write regularly again, have chosen to begin this quest easy on me. As one of the rules says: “You can under-promise and overachieve”. Therefor I have chosen to reach out only for a week. Well, nine days actually. From yesterday, Saturday, when I decided to do this, until next Sunday!

I won’t set any rules about a certain amount of words, or a minimum of minutes/hours. Not even any writing per se – but I must occupy myself with writing matters of some kind! Every day!

Yesterday, day one, I actually wrote and published a blog post, a kind of book review. Does that count? Perhaps, perhaps not.

Well, I had some other matters in my mind which came to me during the day, and later I worked with that. I don’t know where it came from, the idéa to find some older writings I had in some folder somewhere on the computer. Memories from my childhood. Nota bene! For those of you who have read my memories of mom when I was a child – more of that was not what I was aiming for.

Years ago I said to myself I couldn’t remember anything from when I was little! Just a few scenes, like snapshots! That’s all. So I started to write about what I actually remembered. What it looked like where I lived as a child. The house itself, the kitchen, the living room, the bedroom… and so on.

Remarkably enough, that writing also triggered other memories. Not any upsetting or sad ones. Just plain memories of how life was back then and there.

It took me some time to find those files, had to search the entire hard drive, but after finally entering the right search term, suddenly lots of folders were shown. And as it revealed – lots and lots of copies.

I had in mind to copy these files to Scrivener, but there were 8 separate files in the folder I chose, all old word documents. So! First of all, I had to copy all those texts onto one single document.

To Word? I don’t use Word any longer, but to be able to easily get the written text to Scrivener, it had to be on a Word-document.

I did go about this the wrong way. Was obviously not thinking properly. I have a functioning Word for Mac, but instead of opening a new document there, I just opened a “new” where I was. On the old Word. On .doc.

Maybe that wasn’t too bad, per se, but when I had opened the files, copied the text and pasted it onto the new document and then closed that particular document again – it changed! The name changed into one of the other text documents names, and when I had copied/pasted 6 docs, I had suddenly 4 that was exactly the same! Both the .doc-name AND the text in the documents! And those docs who should be there – were gone!

I hadn’t changed anything inside the files, just copied! And I hadn’t saved or changed the name or anything! The only one I did save – disappeared! And so did another one when I by mistake closed down Word, instead of clicking  the copy-option. This old Word really is old!

Have to do something about all my old word-docs as soon as possible. Will then perhaps get rid of all unnecessary copies as well.

Well! Thank goodness I had copies!!!!!

One of the files were .txt, a so-called rich text, which means unformatted. When pasting such text to a word-doc, it’s shown without any specific format. The words are there, but messed up with broken lines and a lot of odd characters. Very irritating. Figure to sit for hours and “decode” – that is, to change it all into readable text again. For example; Instead of all our Swedish letters Å, Ä and Ö were they replaced with % or ^ or something else. And this text – I saw later – consisted of no less than 4715 words!

Now, what to do? I felt hopeless just looking at the mess. But what would happen if I tried to copy the text to a Pages document instead?

Exactly the same. And why should Pages function for a Word-text, un-formatted… Microsoft has never made it easy to join something with Apple. The other way around, on the other hand…

Should I really sit and nag with all these 10 pages?
Then my sight fell on the Grammarly app! Could it? Maybe? Function???

I tried! And even though no Å, Ä, and Ö were shown – after all, Grammarly is English! – all the other odd characters were also gone. Much easier to see the text, at least, and doable to fix.

It took some time, of course, don’t know for how long I sat there adding missing letters into words. And at the same time, I read the text. It was about when I had met my first husband, the father of my daughters, and years and events afterward. As a story told, and then also reflections on him and those times.

Yes, it triggered memories, and those were not pretty. Not at all…

So after god knows how many hours I at least had all those eight files copied into one, and then discover that the rich-text-doc actually had been copied into and worked on a word.doc long time ago. It was just saved under another name…So all those hours were totally lost hours.

Or were they? I wouldn’t have read it otherwise! And maybe that was the point of it. Thinking of these old diary-entrances as a base for more writing, and then reading them, reminded me of things that had hurt me a lot. So maybe this is not only me awakening into a writing process, but also awakening, an me to see, remember, realize and finally let go of that phase in my life. And heal further.

Anyhow! I also uploaded the entire text to Scrivener, but then I felt too tired to do much more. It was also late. I had had in mind to make some kind of “notebook” just for these nine days. The date, what kind of text, and a mini-revue of what I had written.

Like now, this post.

  1. Sunday, Mars 3;
  2. Blog post;
  3. About finding old documents yesterday concerning childhood and the X, and trouble with Word.; (or something like that.)

So! Except for the book review yesterday, nothing much was actually written. BUT! I concerned myself with writing and prepared for further accomplishments.

And what a remark from Grammarly!!! “This text is likely to be understood by college graduates but may not be easy for many to read.”