Posted in Around & About, Blogging, Books & Reading

Worst blogger ever?

Since I haven’t posted anything for some time now? Not written anything new for even longer? Well, I haven’t promised anyone anything in that way. Haven’t even given myself the promise to blog often and regularly.

I have been doing other things. Especially meeting people, and been enjoying myself in different ways. I’ve also continued reading the Legend of the Icepeople, have just begun reading book 17 out of 47. This series is so thrilling, so good!

Also been watching old episodes of Dr Who. Have them all, everyone from 1963 and further on, and are now watching the sixth doctor, played by Colin Baker. 1984 – 1986.
On the whole, I like Dr Who, even though there are adventures I’m not too keen on. Yes, some I might even find a bit boring. Yap! Sorry, but I have to admit that.

About blogging! It should be fun. If one hasn’t got any other reason for doing it, it should at least be for the fun it. If not? Why bother?
I still think it is fun, that’s not the issue, but for the time being, my mind goes to a lot to quite different tasks. Like what’s going on here in this growing neighborhood. It’s so much going on that I want to participate in. Especially this non-profit association we are starting up concerning the community gardens.

There are also family-matters. This weekend I visited my youngest daughter, together with my other daughter and grand-daughter, since my youngest’s son had his 6th-year-old birthday party. We all had a lovely time. In peace and quiet! The birthday party with a lot of kids will take place next weekend. 😉

Now, I’m spending time on the sofa, caressing a cold, sore throat and such… Outdoors the remaining of a quite fierce storm is rumbling about. So not even the faintest thought of a biking or walking tour. Maybe there will be some writing done, instead? I’ll try to! But surely, I’ll also be taking a nap, keep on reading and watch more Dr Who episodes.

P.S. The cake is a Pavlova: Meringue, whipped rich cream and berries. Yummy!

Posted in Blogging, Miscellaneous

A quite different kind of Writer’s Block

I called my Mac-friend yesterday evening, about the weirdness with my MacBook. Neither Safari nor Firefox worked properly. All tabs and bookmarks went missing. Finder windows didn’t open, or closed when I opened something else. When I wanted to move a folder or a file, it created a copy instead. And when trying to open something on WP, it downloaded that one instead. Really weird. And when I restarted the Mac, it didn’t help one bit.

My friend told me to restart it anyway, but as soon as the sound began I should press the Shift-button and keep it pressed down until finished. Then I could open my files and start working again. Well, I did as he said and at first, it seemed to be all right. But just a couple of minutes later – the Mac acted just the same. Did I do anything the wrong way? I don’t know. But I restarted once more, being very thorough to press down the shift-button immediately, and than open my files and browsers directly afterwards.

This time it seemed to work, and so far everything seems to be just fine. He had said it probably was bla-bla that had locked itself, and don’t ask me what this bla-bla-word was that he mentioned. I forgot it less than a second after he had told me, and I wouldn’t have known what it actually was anyway.

A quite different kind of Writer’s block.

Wondering, though, what might have caused this. I had put in a USB-stick in an attempt to find empty space to keep a bunch of folders. But the stick was not new, I had used that on my Mac before and never found anything weird about it. Except now, when I found loads of stuff that was duplicates to stuff I still have on the Mac. Odd though, that I had to confirm that I was allowed to delete a lot of files. Have I really put one of those protecting shields on them? And was in fact the stick to blame for the odd behavior? Or was it just a mere coincidence?

Today all seem to be fine, but I ponder whether I should dare myself to put in the USB stick again. Not now, anyway, but maybe tomorrow! Just to see what happens. Though it wasn’t particularly fun to start all over making all those preference choices again, from the beginning, both on Safari and Firefox. And the beautiful theme I had on Firefox was completely gone. 😦

 

Posted in Blogging

Error – but not horrific

Creating a blogpost in the app on the iPhone, though, can be a little bit horrific…

I was sitting on a sofa at that Museum, Dunkers, when a fling decided for me to post something about the exhibition in this blog. Of course, I neglected what I always think when I do that stupid thing. Never, ever again!!!!

The first sentences placed themselves where I wanted them, and so did the picture. I had just taken that from where I sat, the photos hang on the wall just in front of me.

The sentences just placed themselves, I wrote. Yes, they did. But that was the only thing they did accurately. The spelling thing had gone totally bonkers. The suggestions had no likeness at all, actually, it wasn’t even a suggestion, the word in question just got changed, and more than once to the same odd choice. Which wasn’t mine.

I couldn’t even click it away! The word “wipe” for example, was changed to “EU-parliament”. (WHAT???) All the time it did things like that. Finally I noticed the word that was about to be changed, had been highlighted. Who could guess that would happen, just because a word gets highlighted!

When I was about to add the link, the whole app started to jump up and down. Add another sentence – it jumped up and down. I couldn’t see what I was writing. And when I tried to add a second image – it was impossible!!!  I was obviously not allowed to make a blogpost longer than just a couple of sentences!

Guess who got severely irritated and said: NEVER AGAIN I’ll make a blogpost in the app on the iPhone. Nor on the iPad.

The only thing that is better on the iPad – in this WP-case – is that the screen is bigger.
And I have never earlier experienced that the spelling-thing has behaved like that. It must be a WP error. Thank goodness I usually work on the MacBook.

Posted in Blogging

What’s up?

At this very moment, there has been 15 views on my blog, 8 of them from India.

Mumbai (Bombay) is situated in India.

The site tygpress.com is registered in Mumbai (at godaddy) and is harvesting our blogposts. Yes! OURS, almost all of us, who blogs at least fairly regularly!

So! What does these visits mean?

(Edit: Ten minutes later, 13 out of 21)


Posted in Blogging

I guess…

… at least some of you by now have realized I am a nerd.

For one thing! I love testing new themes for blogs. And home pages. I always have! I have been blogging since early 2007, and all the time I have enjoyed testing what I can do with the layout.

Of course, I have been criticized for that! “You can’t change like that! It must look the same all the time! People want to recognize it when they visit you. To ‘know again’!”

Oh! How boring!

But there are others, who realize that this is a part of who I am, and are looking forward even, to what I might have accomplished this time.
New colours! AHHH!
New images! AHHH!
New theme! AHHHHH!

Now I fell for this temptation. It is called “Ladder”, a Premium theme and not new at all. It is a different kind of theme, I have never had anything like this before. I like it, but I also realize it can be a bit hard to read if the featured image is too messy. And it is a bit dark. Not wrong with dark, per se.

The only widget is set on a front page, and I don’t know yet if I want a front page or not. Can we do without widgets? Give me some time to test this! If I don’t like it, I will find something else in a while.

I actually feel quite relaxed, while pottering with themes and images and colours and such. Guess I have always been an “image-person”. Have done a lot of posters, leaflets and so on in a previous life (that is: before retirement). Have made colourful images of my photos, using layers et cetera. I love PIXLR as an editing tool.

I once during an education period, was called “colourful” by the teacher. I wonder where she got that from. I always wear black. Almost always.

Now I just sit here! I tried to take a walk, but it was too warm so I only went to the grocery and back. Came home with eggs and cherries, but forgot the chocolate.

The balcony is now drenched in the sunshine so I have fled to the sofa. And the laptop. Later I will write for CampWriMo, but not quite yet.

Coffee now would be nice.

 

Posted in Blogging, Camp WriMo, NaNoWriMo, The Solar Eclipse, Writing

About writing

Blogging once a week!? Is that it? At present – it seems so.
And please forgive me for not visiting and liking.
I wasn’t particularly good at commenting even before,
but please forgive me for not doing that either.

Participating in Camp-NaNoWriMo takes its effort. Both in time and energy. Several hours every day, I struggle to reach the daily goal of one thousand word – or more. And I’m doing well!

At first, it seems that I have nothing at all to write about. What are they doing, the characters? What is happening.! But finally I manage to type the first sentence, then I struggle through the first couple of hundreds of words, but then! When reached about 900 to 1000  words, it’s suddenly much easier to continue even 400, 500 or 600 words more!

So I’m writing, all right, and proud of that. Now, during the first 13 days of the July-Camp – today’s score is yet to achieve – I have written 16 479 words! That is  53,2 % of my goal in 42 % of the time!

It’s not particularly well written though. Can’t say that. But I push the characters to where they are supposed to be, I reveal to the (presumed) reader of who they are and why they are there, and I reveal to myself, what I need to write more.

BUT Remember, Thea!

This is only the very first draft! It doesn’t have to be well written! Now, I’m telling the story to myself! That’s about it!
But I dread of the time when I’ll have to put these paragraphs, scenes and chapters together, edit the entire thing, and make an enjoyable story of it.

I do hope I’ll get the language right. My linguistic and verbal skills in my native language, Swedish, is really good. I was about to use the word exquisite here… and that first intuitive choice of word… Yes! So it is!

My linguistic and verbal skills in English though, are good, but certainly not exquisite. I really have to find a way to pay my friend Elaine to help me with that. She’s originally from Manchester, England, and has been teaching English and French for many years.

Isn’t it quite amazing that I suddenly, since early this spring, have been acquainted with such a lovely women? She is lovely! I really like her, and we so easily talk to each other! She also sounded quite excited when I before the summer, gently asked her about proofreading my manuscript!

I experience, that I after this Camp-thing should need to still have some pressure on me to keep on writing every day. But maybe have one day a week free from writing? Sometimes it feels like I need that.
Or? Would it be better to lower the amounts of words I have to write each day? After all! Now, when I have reached the daily goal, there is a huge feeling of relief, and it gets so much easier to continue writing beyond the daily goal.

Or would it be better to keep on with 1000 words a day, every day, and figure I’ll be totally used to that so I kind of “have to write” like an inner urge, not due to demand from something outside of me?

I love to write! I always have! So I guess it’s just a bit hard to maintain total obsession again after that burnout I lived with for many years. It takes time to heal. Longer than you think and want.

It’s often said it takes 21 days to create a new habit, but I guess, it rather takes a little bit more than that. And I also think it’s dangerously easy to slip out of that habit, if you take a day or two off, too early in the new habit.

So, maybe is the ultimate to be writing every day, but lessen a bit on the demand of 1000 words or more? Perhaps 500 as a minimum? 750?

Let’s see how this all feels in a couple of weeks.

Posted in Blogging

Changes

For three or four days I’ve been going through all 184 premium themes that are available to me at Wp. I have for quite some time wanted a theme with a ‘Drop Caps’, and preferably also an ‘Intro.’

(Drop caps real “name” is drop capital or drop initial, a larger initial letter of a section of a text, at least twice the height of one row. I’ve earlier learnt this under the name Anfang. I guess this word has its roots in the old Gutenberg typesetting system. And I don’t mean Wp,s  awful Gutenberg editor. (shivering of disgust). The word Anfang just means “beginning”
An Intro is a section at the beginning of a text, a sentence or a shorter paragraph, that has a larger font-seize then the rest of the text. You can see both of them in the paragraph above.)

I’ve always liked Drop caps. And even more so if it is a beautiful and/or fun one. Therefore I’ve been searching for a theme that allows one – even though I will have to add it myself with a CSS-code. But that’s all right.

If it were only possible to search for such a theme on Wp! But that is not something Wp can provide. A good search system. Last time I added “drop caps” as a search term, I got two hits. I searched for microformats, got some hits, but not necessarily drop caps. And now I realize there are themes that can show a drop cap, but still don’t show up when searched for. Hmm…

Drop caps and Intros aren’t necessary. I just think it can look really good, at the beginning of something written. Something where words are in focus.
Necessary is, on the contrary, to have a narrow main column when written texts are the main concern. For one simple reason – it’s way more readable! With long rows, it too easy for the eyes to lose contact, you can literally unintentionally glide from one row to another, and thus lose contact with what you’re reading.

So besides a Drop cap and hopefully also an Intro, I want a narrow main column. They are not easy to find, most of them are among the older themes, and therefore neither allow drop caps nor featured images.

I have missed having featured images.
Not too huge. Not too small. Not covered with grey or any other colour. Not one that has been oddly cropped by Wp. Or squeezed together from up to down. When trying this out, one theme decapitated the Matisse – woman. Not nice at all. And it’s certainly not good-looking when you begin a post with an image, and the very same image turns up as featured – in the same size!!!!

I want a nice looking blockquote.
Not huge and black-black, and not with a quote-sign hanging around. Aligned left or right, it’s nice when it pops out a bit on the side, which also goes for images.

I would like a nice header-image – but that can be hard to get. What I dislike the most, is when they are more or less covered with grey. Or the colour of the Header text doesn’t change with the back-lying images, so

I would like a fun, colourful theme with personality. Those are among the old ones, and there was a time when there were lots and lots of those old funny themes. We who have older blogs – my oldest, and still having, is from 2009, and I will keep that as long as possible due to all the nice old blog-themes. Even though that blog lies dormant at present. And even though Wp have deleted many of them, and keeps on deleting old themes. I think it’s sad that most of the newer blog themes are so look alike. Boring. White with huge texts, images and widgets. Now I talk about wp.com.

You with wp.org – for example – have way more possibilities. Last time I had a look at wp.org, there must have been at least circa 2000. Which also makes it a bit tough to choose. Who knows in beforehand exactly how one wants the blog to look like? I don’t, never have.

Anyhow! With Wp, you never get all of what you really want. So you have to compromise. What is the most important?
To me, now – the drop caps and a good looking featured image placement. And absolutely a narrow main column. The rest I hoped for.

So, therefore, I added the CSS codes to the Text (instead of Visual in the editor) in the latest post. Later on, I also sat with my iPad adding featured images to some of the later ones.

Then I checked out how my blog would look like, covered in every one of the themes. Most of them I just previewed hastily, a couple I tested a little. I made some short notes about each theme I didn’t discard immediately. And I also made a couple of notes on some  themes without drop caps, as they seemed to be quite nice

I forgot to count how many I had “chosen” during this first round. Twenty, twenty-five maybe. Then I checked out these with a real preview. At that time I had added the featured images. Due to those, I discarded a lot of themes. I also rapidly discarded those with wide main columns, or with any other flaws.

Then they were ten!
And then two.
Then I chose this one. Patch.
Discovered there were no “previous” and “next” posts.
Sighed…. was totally fed up with the whole blog thing now… grabbed the first best blog that was at hand…

Name: Photo Blog.
The theme with the name Photo Blog has one of the
most narrow main columns of them all! 
And the one called "Bloggy" has one of the widest! 
Odd world - WP.

Was it all okay then?

Looked at both.
Compared.

And turned immediately back to Patch. I like this one more.
I didn’t get any good looking Blockquotes though.

Now I only have to add featured images to quite a lot of posts, and maybe I will delete a couple at the same time. Clean up the blog, so to speak.

Finally A confession:
On the whole, I think it’s funny to test themes. This time it was just too many to check out, it got tiresome in the end. Many of them are also boring to look at, and some are – plain ugly.

But that is just my opinion!

Posted in Blogging, Writing

Just an ordinary post

Earlier today I tried to write an ordinary blog post. Nothing happened. My mind had slammed the writing door shut.

For a while, I pondered whether to write about the burnout or not. But naah. Why indulge in negative issues? There are better ones to put energy in. But I can tell you this, just shortly.
– From been living in constant fatigue, not being able to write, read nor even listen to music; to now once again being able both to read and listen to music (if I chose to) AND – since only a short while ago – I WRITE AGAIN!!!!

You can’t believe, how much I have longed for that, so now I live in awe, and are soooo grateful for all the pep talk I’ve got from you wonderful people here on WP!!! Getting likes, and reading your comments, have really helped me get going with the words again. And even in a better style, than before the burnout, I think. I was also a little bit afraid when writing in another language than my own, that I wouldn’t find my own voice again. But, actually, I think I have! It all seems to Be Goooood!

And of course! The Writing-prompts, Ninny Rhino and CampWriMo have been a huge help on the way!

I’m not on the safe side yet, though. Meaning having the routine of writing daily; and easily, naturally just sit down to work without thinking much of it! Just doing it!
I now do a lot of pacing around (mentally mostly) before I finally manage to sit down in front of the Mac and begin writing. I still have to force myself to do it. Especially since I haven’t got a clue of what to write. But then! When only the first words are written, I usually enter the flow.

Except for yesterday.

The day before yesterday, I had written a long text that was meant to be the continuing on “Andrew Millbourne’s big secret”. It turned out to be crap. It was supposed to deal with why the people at that planet have all these metal implants. Why, how and from when.
I ended up with a text where the first circa 350 words is quite good, but the remaining 700-something words, is nothing but a tiring, boring, wordy, telling, verbiage, blä-blä… blä-blä…

In a way, not bad. I can certainly use the information as a background for myself while writing. Getting to know one’s characters, you know. But letting a reader actually read this!!! Oh no! No! No! NO!

Then yesterday, I thought I could use those 700-something words after all. BUT! Edit the text hard! Use what is usable, and make it into a dialogue. So I copied the text and pasted it to a new document. Dated it May 5th.

Oh my god!!! It was good thinking, but a disaster to work with. So hard! Seemed impossible to get some word at all, onto the document. Not until I only used the first sentence and deleted all the rests, I finally managed to write a text where Andrew and one of the spokesmen are talking together, and Andrew asks about those implants, its origin and usage.
And he realizes a lot more, what he hadn’t been informed about beforehand. Kind of Surpriiiiise!!!!

That text is not finished yet, though. Not to my own surprise – my writing-time are evenings. Just about from now (8PM), as a matter of fact, and for a couple of hours onward.

Posted in Blogging, Camp WriMo, NaNoWriMo, Writing

A three days long vacation

Or is it technically four? A added the last day’s achievement of writing for the Camp WriMo early in the morning that last day, so in a way, it is four. I realize though, I have to start writing again as soon as possible, since I know, the longer I wait, it has a tendency to be harder to begin writing again. So get going, Thêa! Whether writing or not writing this evening is not an option, it is a Must Do!

What have I learned during this month of Camp-Writing? First of all! I can still do it! I still have it in me! The words, the stories, the lust, the wanting. The NEED – to write, to live in writing-mode!

I guess I’ve been scared in a way, after the burn-out. Have been afraid I would discover that I had totally lost the ability, so I didn’t even dare to try. I have told myself: ” I can’t!” And:  “I have no imagination!” And other stuff like that.
And – admit – besides the burn-out-fatigue, I’,m most certainly also a lazy-butt. Have to be pushed, sometimes, to start doing things…
(hmmm… adhd…)

I discovered I can write in a different way from how I wrote earlier. That I can sit there and just write, don’t edit, don’t aim for writing the story chronologically, from page One to page Whatever! But every day just start writing something and then let the inspiration flow! Don’t think too much, don’t try to control everything, just let it comes whatever will come, and don’t stop to check or correct or anything.
Some smaller editing I had to do along the way, though. Correct spelling, for example, couldn’t go on when I saw I spelled something wrong. And each day’s session when finished, I added to Grammarly to see what it had in mind for me. But the next day – new writing.

Sometimes I read a little bit here and a little bit there, just to remind where the characters were and what they were doing, and when there was about a week remaining, I read all of it. And added 1056 words while doing that.

I found…a lot of telling, to change into showing…..
a lot of seeds to saw…
a lot of questions, to be answered…
And all those …MATTERS… that will stay where they are for the time being.
There is so much more to be written before I start the real editing work. I don’t have even half of a novel yet. Ten percent???
But I have ideas… and hunches… and have been presented to a couple of surprises while writing. It’s amazing when a new character shows up, just out of the blue.

COLD FEET!
Yes! I feel that too. Will I really be able to not only continue writing pieces and scenes to this story but also managed to mix all this into a good, readable story? With living characters, exciting events, a bit of humor here and there – on the whole – create a story that can catch the reader? (That is – Me!  HAHAHAHA!)

Never mind…Okay!!!!!
The answer to the question: “Will I ever…” is: “No, you won’t if you don’t try.”
NO! STOP! Change that! – Change it to: “Just do it!

A cool note: I checked how many words I wrote now... 551
Posted in Artsy, Blogging, Writing

Monday evening – and Ninny Rhino

We have had terrible weather this weekend. Maybe I exaggerate a bit, but it has been some really fierce winds. Storm, when worst. Friday was at least sunny so the fact I had to go out on my bike, wasn’t that bad after all. Was lucky too, didn’t have the wind totally against me.

Saturday, on the contrary, offered not only storm gusts, but also rain. I stayed indoors the entire day.

I let the vacuum cleaner chase dust rats, I did the dishes – but mostly I was watching old episodes of Dr Who and doing solitaires on the iPad. Napping, of course. I do a lot of napping nowadays. Sunday, the weather had cleared up a bit, and I went for a short bike-ride. Only 8,3 kilometer. Bought bananas too…

I confess! I haven’t written a word since the last blog post! But I have continued to clean up among files and folders. It’s crazy how many copies, and copies of copies, there are on the hard drive. Still not finished that work, but slowly getting at least some order in the mess.

Today, I had an appointment with my physiotherapist before lunch, and late afternoon I paid a visit to the painting-study-group. At least I, could need a bit of proper “studying”.

On the other hand, I think painting is really fun to occupy myself with; but it is painting with words, that is my real vocation.

The colorful one

Despite the fact a 7-year-old can paint better than I, the colorful woman I did the last time, now has got a sister.
The “teacher” didn’t say much. Just asked if I had copied some image of a sort. “No”, I answered, and realized he had totally forgotten about my colorful other.

Then he left me, and I kept on struggling with painting lips.

The sister. A bit more… punky! Ey? I wonder why I painted those red thingies on both sides of her… ??? I mean – the thingies in her hair, are supposed to be there. But the other ones???

As I said – a 7-year-old could do this better, but…

I. Don’t. Care!!!

… a girl just got to have fun…

Apropos the Ninny Rhino! I’ve decided to extend my commitment for the entire March, not only 9 days. I know I haven’t actually written anything, but it makes me land in a writer-mood. I’ve began longing for writing something more than occasional blog posts.

There is this prompt for March month that Diana Wallace Peach at Myths of the Mirror has on her blog. And I’m really tempted to join in.