Jaye’s Week: From the Edge of Insanity…

My brain needs discipline, as I can no longer make it behave the way I want it to.

Mind you, it must be contagious, for my laptop and tablet are showing similar tendencies.

I have spent last evening, first with the laptop and then the tablet, trying to run through my emails from the comfort of my armchair.

The laptop was on a go-slow, so I switched to the tablet.

This annoying piece of crap decided not to respond at all. Patience personified, I kept trying, only for the battery to drain away faster than a chocolate teapot. Something it shouldn’t have been able to do since it wasn’t doing anything.

I can feel the day coming when I will take a hammer to both of them as I am not sure how much longer my brain can cope with these insanity-inducing contraptions.

It wouldn’t be so bad if I wasn’t aware of all the wonderful things they can do. When in a good mood, of course.

But I ask you, is it asking too much to have a piece of equipment that does what it says on the tin?

We wouldn’t stand for such substandard performance from any other electrical object, so why, for all that’s Holy, do we put up with it?

The main desktop PC is not immune to such shenanigans, it’s just sneakier. Its favourite trick is ignoring whole sentences while I am busy typing them.

I get no warning, no sign that something has gone awry. The first I know about it is when I try to read the work back, only to find yawning great holes where parts of my story are missing.

I tell you; it is beginning to feel like a conspiracy…

Speaking of a conspiracy, has anyone else noticed how difficult (annoying) Word is becoming? They seem to tinker with it almost every day and it is becoming a nightmare. I was reading a post earlier, where the virtues of Scrivener were explained, and how sensibly easy it is. Maybe I didn’t need Word anymore?

Any feedback on this, please?

On the bright side, and I do try to find this even on those grey days, nothing affects my pen and paper. Sometimes I am so glad that I can write, blissfully, as far away from technology as I can get. As happy as Larry, knowing that I am in total charge of the creative process. Until it is time to commit it to digital, that is!

So, to end on a much happier note, I must report that the mindset for the new WIP Ghost of a Chance, is firmly in place. I just need to find a better way of working on it.

But I have enjoyed being away from all the technobabble so much, that I shall be doing more of it!

Worry is a terrible thing, it steals the quality of life from right under your nose, reducing your world into a place of doom and gloom. We have been sitting on a massive worry these past six months and have refused to start the new year until we had good news.

I have desperately tried to keep everything normal, finish my WIP and keep the website going, but have to admit it was a poor imitation of the real thing, and I apologise for that.

I have not been sharing much of this with our friends and followers and this may seem strange after all your incredible support when Anita had that massive heart attack in 2020. Your love and good wishes pulled us through that terrible time, but when disaster struck again last year, it seemed far more serious, and we really felt that talking about it might make it worse.

Anita’s heart is still severely damaged, and despite having two stents and a pacemaker fitted, it only barely functions. When a series of lumps started to appear around her neck last year, the alarm bells started ringing again.

Because of the raging virus and all the hospital delays, it took months to have the lumps investigated. The consultant mentioned cancer and after deliberation, they finally decided to remove part of her thyroid. Surgery was a problem as they didn’t think her heart was strong enough, but they said that delaying it was not an option.

A nightmare time for all the family, especially Anita for she can’t abide hospitals at the best of times. My sister has never been ill and to be struck down by two life threatening illnesses almost at the same time seems very unfair. She made it through the surgery without incident, but we had to wait two agonising weeks to get the results of the tests.

By this time, we were all terrified and sick with worry, dreading the news.

The day of the appointment, I felt sick to my stomach but somehow kept a smile on my face. I think I held my breath when she was called into the consultants office, but five minutes later the door opened and she rushed out of the room, a massive smile on her face. We watched in amazement as she ran out of the ENT department to a standing ovation from the nurses.

By this time, we knew the news must be good, but I wanted to know how good. Just before we all reached the lifts, I caught her arm and made her stop walking. ‘Well,’, I said and waited.

She stood there and laughed at me, and I didn’t think she was going to say anything.

‘THERE IS NO CANCER,’ she shouted.

All the way home in the car, she kept saying those words, and her relief was wonderful to see. Despite the odds, her poor old ticker had survived the surgery and she was cancer free.

But four days later, we had to rush back to the hospital, as Anita was having trouble breathing. She is now back home, but it seems that worrying isn’t going anywhere after all.

She is looking better, although still very weak and breathless much of the time. The list of her medications grows ever longer, but … and you may have noticed this, none of what happened has stopped her writing her poetry.

Now all I have to do, is get my own head back together!

17 thoughts on “Jaye’s Week: From the Edge of Insanity…

  1. We empathise with your pain over Word. If Sheila (poetry- powerful and layered) and I (fantasy- don’t ask) happen to be in the same room writing, the language would earn the approval of any military gathering.
    It is my opinion that Word is designed for business in all its myriad forms and the writers who look to the Muses are grudging add-ons. Its programmes are quite incapable of handling the complexities which go with the imaginations and inspirations of even the most modest of writers.
    I cite the following:
    1. When using but 0.02% of Italian words in a recent work, ‘Spell-chuck’ had a panic attack and started underlying sundered English words added to ‘Dictionary’ with Italian equivalents. It took five attempts to convince Word to return to English as the main language for checking spelling.
    2. Should you write something in excess of 150,000 words then Word starts to groans under the weight, forgetting how to spell while getting confused as to what font or Paragraph setting to use. Once more it chucks the whole ‘Dictionary’ you have added and in a furious sulk refuses to co-operate, until you have closed and opened the document a number of times.
    3. Should you have cared to use ‘Read Aloud’ and selected one of the two women’s voices (useful when written from a woman’s POV) Word reveals its misogynist tendencies and suddenly lapses into a faster more abrupt male voice…refusing to change until it decides to do so. Of late it has given up on two women’s voice and now starkly offers ‘Female / Male’, not even a name.
    4. Using artistic imagery causes another flurry of lines, these blue which not only display an inadequacy of English but if adopted can lead to a red line objecting to spelling, which if you should feel mischievous enough to change has the blue line exploding upon the offence with indignation. Should a writer have to cope with these schismatic disputes?.
    5. When listening to my wife’s comprehensive knowledge of English’s more colourful words and phrases it occurs to me that Word is also quite unable to cope with the requirements of any of the traditional poetical formats and needs severe treatment to obey, lest it attempt to move the whole work into one paragraph.
    6. I only feel safe with my work using a memory stick and ‘Save As’.
    I really must look at Scrivener.

  2. Every time I open Word it keeps on trying to get me to ‘take the tour’, of all the new whizz-bang gizmos that it’s certain will ‘enhance my productivity’., and I keep ignoring it!

    Scrivener is touted as a steep learning curve, and it is IF you want to learn every little thing the entire software can do … otherwise, it’s strikingly similar to what Word used to be before they started fucking with it.
    It takes a bit of time to get familiar with where everything is,
    The only thing the version I’m using isn’t all that up with its ‘styles’, but the new version which came out a couple of months ago apparently has fixed that little fox-poo, (faux-pas 🙂 ) so I still need Word to format for Kindle/Smashwords etc, but that’s the only small quibble I have with it.
    The creator of Scrivener stated quite dogagorically (categorically) that he wrote it primarily as a writing tool, for WRITERS! and isn’t trying to evolve it into ‘something for everyone’, which I suspect is what Word’s doing, and is ending up being something for no-one.
    Congrats on GoaC! 😀

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