Sunday, November 9, 2014

Days of Nano, November 9, 2014 - Ready to start writing again

A bit of pain

I’ve been away for several days because my wrist swelled up, my elbow hurt (still does a bit) and I recognized the signs of typing too long at a stretch.  I had to let my wrist and elbow rest or have long-range consequences. 

Many years ago I saw a neurologist for pain in my hands, noticing that I preferred to open a door with both hands flat on it instead of turning the door knob.  He diagnosed an injury to the ulnar nerve and we narrowed it down to how I sat when I was at work editing.  I would lean my forearms on the edge of my desk (the right angle edge) while holding my marking pen in my hand - and rarely putting it down.

Knowledge is strength and I soon learned to put the pen down when I wasn’t using it and to rest my arms on my chair, not my desk. 

I soon saw the similarities to what I was doing now, which was cradling the mouse with my hand when I wasn’t using the mouse and leaning against the edge of my desk - that right angle edge again

Today I’ve wrapped my wrist with a small flexible splint and rolled up a hand towel to serve as a wrist rest.  That should help.  I’m also planning a shorter day typing.  I don’t want to drop out of Nano, but I also don’t want to make my hand and arm unusable for other tasks.

Wish me luck.

Nano on Facebook

There’s a group for NaNoWriMo on Facebook and I joined it - as well as being part of Brynne’s smaller group of writers.

In general I just skim the postings.  I’m in this to write, not to talk about writing.  However, if they want to talk about writing that’s OK with me.  But today, someone posted a snobby comment about seeing so many people using two spaces after a period instead of one which he insisted was absolutely the most correct way to do it. 

The group seemed to be responding to his comment as if God Himself had spoken.  I was an Editor for 25 years or so and that’s how long the debate’s been going on.  Some people say that two spaces after a period was a result of using a typewriter that saw no difference between an I and an M and gave each of them the same amount of space.  So, to be clear that the sentence had ended, they typed two spaces after the period.

In the days of the computer and automatic kerning (giving each letter only the space needed) people will argue that only one space is needed. 

You can see what kind of an argument that is.  If I’m working for someone, I use the type of spacing they’ve set in their style guide (a guide settles this type of argument, at least for the company).  If I’m writing for Nano, I use two spaces after the period because I like the definition it gives - and I used to be someone who typed on a typewriter.

This is the argument today.  My first comment to the post was that I used two spaces after the period because I liked it that way.  They continued to argue the point, but seemed encouraged that someone had spoken up for two spaces.  Later today I saw the argument for either side in full swing so I commented something like:  Why are you arguing about one space or two?  Nano isn’t for editing and polishing your manuscript, Nano is for typing a 50,000 word draft.

I wish I could have seen their faces.  (That doesn’t make any sense, but it’s words and I’m leaving it in.)

I just checked Facebook.  It’s now nearly 5 PM, and they are still arguing the point.  Easily distracted, I’d say.  Oh well.  It’s their challenge and they are responsible for how they go about it.  Maybe one of them will become a famous author and then I’ll remember having argued that they should have stayed on track with their book instead of being distracted for hours and hours over one space or two.

Youthful enthusiasm or mature knowledge?

What’s happening on Nano is a lot like the young against the old.  I’ve already argued that case and formed my opinion.
The other day I was reading a post on Facebook.  There was an article about what sort of clothing you shouldn’t wear once you were a certain age.  Of course I had to click on it and see what I’m doing wrong.  I could have sworn that writer was just out of high school - she sounded like the snobby kids that know what’s IN and what isn’t and don’t mind at all telling you about it.
She had a long list of things she thought older women shouldn’t wear.

NOTE:  I just spent 10 minutes on the web trying to find that post.  Couldn’t do it.  Waste of my time.

The only thing I agreed with was that older women shouldn’t wear shorts so short you can see the cheeks of their butts.  True.  I don’t think it’s a great style for younger women either.  However, things like leather, leopard prints, etc., etc.  were on the list.  The more I read the more I felt this was a very opinionated young person.  My comment to the post was that I thought women of this certain age wore pretty much wore whatever they wanted to.  They don’t need the fashion police to tell them what to wear.  I still think she’s very young.

I have years of experience wearing clothing and I’ll tell you this.  The only things I am sorry I never wore (and would not wear today) were a strapless party dress (my mother thought they were only for older women) and a bikini.    Once I was free to choose my own clothing (and pay for it) I no longer wanted that strapless dress.  In those days anyone wearing a strapless gown was in danger of exposing her private body to the public.  I know, now people are doing it just to get a reaction.  I prefer not to.  A bikini, well, I never really wanted to expose that much of my body.  I also had fears of the top or the bottoms coming down.  I knew I couldn’t handle the embarrassment.

Colors?  I’ve never cared to wear beige, olive, bright orange, brown.  Those just aren’t good colors for my fair skin and light hair.  I’m not locked into that.  I just have never tried something on that I liked in that color.  Never.  Ever. 

What am I wearing today - what I wore to church:  jeans, t strap shoes, and a big loose lime green shirt.  It’s warm enough and that’s what I’m wearing.   That sweet little girl who wrote the article would probably have me in tiny print dresses, a bun, lace up shoes and a shawl.  She’ll figure it out some day.

You know, I wonder if she wears her shorts so high that her butt cheeks hang out?  Is that even a fashion?  Or is it a bit of “I’ll wear what I please.”  same as I have. 

Quitting here at 10, 276 words.  That way I can write again tomorrow.  Happy Nano to you.


  1. Isn't NaNoWriMo for writing novels? So, why are they worrying about spaces, clothing and silly stuff? I can't imagine I would read a novel about either of those subjects. Sounds like they are procrastinating on their novels.

    There used to be a NaBloWriMo...where you wrote every single day for your blog. Do they still do that?

  2. Yes Lin, if you meet the challenge you should have the draft of a novel or at least be very close to it. The idea is to just input the novel - what you think it will be - and revise and polish it later. I agreed to do Nano because my granddaughter challenged me to do it. Because I don't have a novel in mind, I'm just collecting ideas and putting them down. So far, it isn't to my liking, but . . . whatever.
    Granddaughter is also working out plot lines and designing characters and just doing what she would normally do to write a book. I just try to keep an open mind about it with her. The others, well I do wonder what they'll have at the end of the month.

  3. I've never heard of NaBloWriMo, but it would probably work. For a while I was writing at least one blog post a day because they paid me $1/day and it amused me to be paid for blogging. It's not too hard if you don't try to do something wonderful each day.

  4. I took a creative writing class years ago and we did what they call "daily papers"---which is writing each day. I think that is what you are doing--sort of stream of consciousness writing, which is GREAT for getting good ideas and a start. Keep it up! That is a LOT of writing!

    1. Yes, I rather expect I'll find a topic I want to talk a lot about and off I'll go. This is the first time I've shared Nano as I went along so it's probably good it's not something that'll keep you on the edge of your chair. Thanks for following along.


I'd love to hear from you.