Chistmas Ending

So! Now it’s over. All the Holidays and all the Festivity. If there have been any festive days, that is. For me, I’m pretty glad these weeks now have come to an end.

I don’t regret even one thing… and I’ve been smiling quite a lot

Not that I’ve had three bad weeks! Not at all! They have been peaceful and quiet. Lots of reading and movie-watching. Kitty-sitting two of the weeks, and some bike-riding when the weather allowed it. And some church-going. Nothing much else to chose from when one wants to see people. And many of them there are my friends, after all.

About Movies! If I had been a bit cautious here, I would have written down the name of all I have seen during these weeks. I’m not and I haven’t. And I don’t even think I remember them all.

The meditative Hopi

If I had been even the slightest more cautious, I would also have written a review of them. Yes, you’re absolutely right. I haven’t. Actually! I hate writing reviews! It doesn’t matter whether it is a movie or a book or anything else. I hate it. I get an odd creepy feeling inside of me, only by thinking of doing it.

But I can mention the ones I remember from these three weeks. This evening I have just finished watching “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” from 1961 with Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard in the leading roles. At first, it seemed to me to be a bit boring, but it turned out really good!

Yesterday I watched “China Town” from 1974 with Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway. I hardly recognized that young Jack. Time flies! And the movie was good. It’s kind of liberating to watch a crime story that is told slowly, without quick camera clips and angles, and dark corners and shooting all the time. A story can be really thrilling without hasty clip-clip-clip and darkness!

My favorite Jason Bourne movie, by the way, is “The Bourne Identity” from 1988 with Richard Chamberlain in the leading role, and Denholm Elliot as the doctor. So much more a STORY and not just a lot of shooting and running. And as such, so much more thrilling since it keeps the psychology in the story intact. Also so much more true to Robert Ludlum’s book with the same title which it’s based on.

I’ve also been watching the first seven Batman-movies, and a bunch of Christmas movies. I found the TV-series “Tales of the city” on Netflix, based on Armistead Maupin’s novels. Watched the three old ones, and have begun to watch the one from 2019.

And… I don’t think I remember more. It doesn’t matter. No big deal at all.

At present I’m also hooked on reading. A series of books written in the eighties. I kind of laughed at it in the eighties-nineties something, when everyone (it seemed) read it and said it was the best books they had ever been reading. There are no less than 47 books in that series. I saw them read these pocketbooks, which were more or less warned out, laced with dog-ears and silly (I thought) images on the front. Like those cheap paperback books one could buy at newsstands and kiosks. Mickey Spillane and such.

And now I’m totally hooked! Can easily read one of those books in just a couple of hours! So! What am I talking about? “The legend of the Ice-people” of course, written by the Swedish-Norwegian author Margit Sandemo. And I know you can get it in English.

Now! Let’s Wikipedia take over here: The Legend of the Ice People – I’m to lazy too even try to write a review.

My real writing? Have I been writing during Christmas? Well! Let’s talk about that another day!

A new beginning

Since I finished NaNoWriMo, I’ve been a wretched lazy-butt. When it comes to writing. Obviously, I should never participate in such matters, even though it gave me some good as well.

Nevertheless, now I’m on it again. Working on my story about Mz Eliza Elderberry. Went to the library yesterday, sat down, opened my iPad and began. I had copied the entire story from Scrivener to Pages, and therefore it’s easy to keep on working.

I know it’s possible to have Scrivener both on the Mac and the iPad, but I don’t know whether it would cost me extra or not. Maybe I should address L&L and ask. It would be quite stupid to buy the same program twice, I think. Just to be able to switch between devices. I got the expression I would have to do that, but I didn’t go further at that time, to actually ask about it.

Anyhow! Pages works, and now I’m sitting here writing a blog post about writing, instead of actually doing it. And, yes! Right now I am at the library.

About the manuscript, I’ve begun translating it into Swedish and simultaneously I’m doing some editing. The translation work in itself isn’t difficult. But some things aren’t particularly easy to change. For example, Eliza’s name. Mz Eliza Elderberry. That doesn’t function well in Swedish.

Eliza, is okay even though the spelling is – normally – wrong. The most common spelling is Elisa. But it can be done with a z. If I want to keep that. Mz, is totally out of the question. The Swedish version of it doesn’t ring the same bell at all. And Elderberry? Would it be possible for me to give her a family history that would explain that name? Because it’s certainly not a Swedish name.

It is a bit troublesome how I shall solve this. I like the full name, and it also says something about her. Also, the direct translation into Swedish just sounds very, very stupid.

What the name says about her, is that she is a healer, and knows everything about medicinal herbs and other remedies from  nature. Therefore, in the village where she lives, she is believed to be a witch, and that leads to horrible consequences. And that is essential to the story that follows. It can absolutely not be deleted.

So! I have a problem to solve there. And I have other “expressions” I’ve written in English, that are too difficult to just translate straight off. They need quite a lot of thinking before writing.

Anyhow, it feels good to be back on track again, and the problems will be solved. Won’t worry about that.

Finally!

Finally, I have begun working on the manuscript to “The Lives and Whereabouts of Mz Eliza Elderberry”. Well, I needed a vacation, didn’t I?

I have been rather lazy these two weeks. Spent a lot of time watching “Gotham” on Netflix among other things. I like that series. About those years before Bruce Wayne becomes Batman, focusing on James Gordon, the police detective, and all the other classic characters in the city of Gotham. Selina Kyle, the Penguin, the Riddler and so on. In a bit different forms…
I hope Netflix will send season five as well in the near future. I’m watching season four now, and it will come to an end sooner than I want it to.

During these weeks I have also been meeting friends, and it seems to be more and more to participate in, the closer we get to Christmas. If I just open my door and go out. Which I do. When you keep on going out meeting people in this area where I live, you also learn there are even more places to go to, to meet people. In this area. And often the same people, and new ones!

It’s so fun! I just love being retired! Saying Hi and Hello and knowing where I can go to be acquainted with someone or many, it’s such a treat.

Okay! I’m home a lot as well. Sometimes just dwelling. I admit. But I’m also knitting a turtle-neck sweater while watching “Gotham”. And today, hence, I began to work on my story. At last, Mz Eliza!

Began by deleting everything that didn’t have anything at all to do with the story. Updated Scrivener, it behaved very oddly so I checked if there were any updates available. And it was! So I did!

Then I made a copy to be sure I would have the first draft handy if I needed it for some reason. Finally, I translated Chapter one to Swedish and made some minor editing. Chapter one was fairly good as it was. 1890 words now. Almost 300 more than the English version.

Felt really good about that, and began to bake some bread. I have still some hummus left from yesterday. It will be yummy!

Tomorrow I have an appointment with a chiropractor. I am so tired of my stiff aching body, so I just had to do something really concrete about that problem. My body need some professional help to be able to heal that.

I’ve begun to write a bit about that on my old Thea-blog, the predecessor of this one. It’s a bit pity that that one should just be lying there dormant. So, you’re welcome over if you would like to read a bit about health, chiropractor-treatments, food-supplements and such.

And Now! I’ll eat some freshly baked bread, still warm and nice. To that, I’ll watch a movie – or perhaps the next episode of Gotham! 😀

No needs for words now.

I didn’t think I would write this much while visiting my daughter. But I got the opportunity, and I grabbed it. Both Friday, yesterday and today.

I promise, I haven’t been rude to anyone doing this, diving into the iPad. I just didn’t want to go out in the icy cold weather. But they did.

And here is the result. 😁🤓😆 I am a Winner!

It’s okay, of course, that I these days have written only in Swedish – much quicker this way – and mostly diary notes, ponderings and such. The important issue was to write, not what to write.

Now I can take it easy, without any pressure at all, and keep on working on “The Lives and Whereabouts of Mz Eliza Elderberry”. I have, after all, also written a lot during these 24 days that is, or is about to be, included in that story.

From now on, I will probably take a day off from writing, once in a while. Meeting people, having lots of laughs – and be Living my Lives and Whereabouts.

Under the old chestnut-tree, over the fields

Still on my weekend visit at my daughter’s. The weather is lousy. Icy cold, feels like below freezing point, even though it isn’t. Close enough, though.

It’s cloudy, gray and very, very windy. Raining? Not sure. Will NOT go out today and realize it is.

It seems I’ll get an hour or more to spend with my novel today. Have just a little more than 1800 words left to write, then I’ve reached the 50.000 for NaNoWriMo. Feels good. Finish today?

I love to be here, but I also miss my home, my preferable food, my everyday habits. But soon enough I’m back home again, and tomorrow night I’ll sleep in my own bed. And miss not being here any longer.

The weather looks a lot better on the photo, than when I look out through the windows.

Back and Forth

So! I have changed my mind again? AH? Don’t know what I want to do? Difficult to decide? Yes! In this case, I have. Bring or not bring my laptop with me, when I visit my daughter.

If I was about to stay there for a week, or even more – I wouldn’t even have given it one single thought. I would have brought it. But now! For the weekend? Oh yes, my mind is going back and forth over that issue.

On one hand, since I’m not staying long why carry that extra weight? Okay! It’s a laptop. It’s a MacBookPro from 2012, so not that much weight, ah? I actually put it on my own scale, and it measured 2 kilograms. ( 2kg= 4lb 6.547930 oz)

Fair enough! Could do! But why? I mean, since I try to minimize the luggage as much as possible, and absolutely need to bring some extra clothes, a warm woolly sweater, for example, toothbrush and such, and some of my special food – non-wheat etc – would it really be wise and necessary for those few days, to bring the laptop as well?

On the other hand! Even though I don’t write thousands and thousands of words every day, I have my story on my mind almost all the time. You know how it is! I might also want to show some of it to my daughter, read a part or two, to her.

Then there is the NaNo! I have that on my mind as well! I want to write every day, and update every day. Even if it’s just a shorter piece. Not every scene has to be 3.400 words long or more.

Do you begin to see my problem now? I am as nerdy with my writing and my stories that I guess all of you writing people are. And guess what! I have Scrivener on my MacBook only!

There, there! The predicament! Can I solve it somehow?

Oops! There it came. The idea. The advice from within. Or maybe it was Albert, the Muse…
I have Apple! I have a MacBookPro! I have an iPad. I have Pages. And I have iCloud. I rarely use Pages. Maybe I should use it more. But that is a question I can deal with later.

For now, I figured I could copy all I had written to NaNoWriMo and paste it into a Pages document. Thought and done! That part wasn’t hard. Then I added a table of contents and made sure it was adequate so that I easily could find what I wanted. Not too hard to do this either. And I could see the total word count on my manuscript as well.

Next phase! Open the iPad and make sure this file had appeared there. It had. With the word count – which then suddenly was gone! In both places! I got it all right after a while, guess Pages couldn’t show the word count on both places simultaneously. But the most important now, was that I could see it on the iPad.

Then, I have to be able to reach the NaNo-site from the iPad. I use Firefox for theabyme.com as well as for the NaNo-site. (Have my Swedish blog on Safari so I won’t keep on signing in and out all the time.)

On the iPad I only have Safari, so I opened NaNo in Safari on the Mac and added the site as a favorite. Then I easily can log in to NaNo when I need to update the word-count via the iPad. (Perhaps I’ve better to test that today, making sure everything functions as I want it to do.)

If all this goes my way, I can leave the MacBook at home, and rely on the iPad! At least I think I haven’t forgotten anything important now.

I also think this is quite a clever solution! Less luggage, but the possibility to read, write, show my daughter – and update my word account to the NaNo-site. And that’s all I need. The possibility to do what I want if and when the circumstances allow it.

After the dates

On Friday I’ll take the train to my daughter’s for a couple of days. That leaves today and tomorrow to write the remaining 6.665 words to the NaNoWriMo. I don’t think I’ll do that.

I don’t say it’s impossible! I wrote almost 3.400 words two days in a row just recently. But I won’t do that now. Now it’s already evening, and tomorrow it’s Thursday and I have some things I want to do. Anyway, there are days left after my visit there, almost a week, so I’m not actually in a hurry. It would have felt good, though, to keep a straight line of writing every day, since that was what I aimed for the most.

Have actually changed my mind about not taking the MacBook with me. I will! But not sitting writing for hours. But for a while, I probably could, and then update the NaNo-results the up-coming days at least a little.

Everyday-writing was the keyword.

Yesterday it was easier to write again. When I realized that what I had done, was having finished part one of the story. Therefore I unconsciously and automatically had stopped for a pause. Thus, it was much easier to continue the story from there, with Part two. So I did.

Now I simply await my Muse – still Albert, you know – to show up and push me further on the writing road.
”Don’t begin without me,” he usually says. ”You know I’m the one that actually carries this story.”
I do some eye-rolling and head-shaking behind his back but say nothing.
”Oh, I noticed that!” he says, turns around quickly and waves his index finger in front of my face. I look at his finger and go cross-eyed.
”Don’t do that!” I say.
”Then don’t get nasty with me!”
”I don’t.”
He glowers at me, snorts, turns around and inspects my coffee table. Immediately he finds my blue china bowl with dates and starts chewing on them. One after the other.
”Hm. Good stuff. What is it?”
”Dates,” I say and sigh. ”Aren’t we gonna start writing soon?”
”Just a sec,” he says and grabs the last one.

What have I done to deserve him?

The header image: I had in mind to use an image of my daughter’s cat, a Devon Rex – the cutest ever, who I’ll cuddle this weekend.
Then I accidentally saw the ginger one at Pixabay, and couldn’t resist.

But here is Hopi as well.