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Jay Lake
Date: 2011-10-20 05:50
Subject: [personal] Miscellaneous updates, dead hard drive edition
Security: Public
Tags:books, cancer, friends, health, klog, personal, sunspin, tech, writing

Apologies for the limited link salad today. The MacBook Pro’s hard drive had to be replaced yesterday. It failed gracefully with full backups, so this was mostly annoying instead of devastating. Much time and precious energy was consumed, and hooray for AppleCare. Still getting the laptop back to the way I like things. (And have I mentioned how much I hate the nicknames “lappy” and “compy” for “laptop” and “computer”? It’s totally irrational, for some reason these are cringe words for me, but it’s true.)

In other news of defective media, I started reading Terry Pratchett’s SnuffPowells | Barnes & Noble ] last night. Wow has the quality of the book-as-object come down. The paper is noticeably thinner and flimsier than other recent hardbacks of his, and the first signature was trimmed about 3 or 4 degrees out of true with respect to the horizontal baseline of the type, which made reading the very first part of the book a bit like reading on a boat. Everything was sort of a vee. The text itself also suffers from some fairly blatant copy-editing errors. Or possibly a lack of thorough copy-editing in the first place. For a writer of Pratchett’s stature to be published with such inattention to quality control and presentation says volumes about the state of hard copy publishing, at least at Doubleday.

In other news of defective me, yesterday I definitely continued my “hit the wall” phase. I’m feeling a bit better today, and might even manage some WRPA — at a minimum I have editorial correspondence to return on several fronts — but my backbrain continues to quietly inform me that my writing days are probably over until the nasty chemo goes away. So likely no more Sunspin, or anything else, until mid-January at the earliest. This continues to make me sad.

Day jobbery today and tomorrow, and tomorrow the funeral for [info]kenscholes‘ father-in-law, speaking of sadness.

Don’t forget to back up your hard drive. And your mindstate, if you have the tech.

Originally published at jlake.com. You can comment here or there.

Post A Comment | 12 Comments | | Flag | Link

User: cathshaffer
Date: 2011-10-20 13:06 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Who says lappy and compy? Is that an Applecare thing?
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2011-10-20 14:10 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Oh, Ghu, no, Apple doesn't use words like that. Some people on my flist do, though.
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Kari Sperring
User: la_marquise_de_
Date: 2011-10-20 14:13 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Take care.
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User: magentamn
Date: 2011-10-20 15:03 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I don't have the tech to back up my mind, so I am keeping an ongoing file (which I need to back up). It started as a record of de-cluttering, to keep track of progress, which has been better than I thought it was, once I wrote it all down. Then I added chores done, to notice that days I have a lot of routine chores, I don't get much de-cluttering done. Then I added what I made for dinner, because I keep repeating myself, and not varying what we eat enough. Now it has turned into an "occasion book" record and has been very useful - when did I have a nosebleed, so I can tell the doctor. When did I last mop the kitchen floor? When did we change the sheets? As I get older, I have more trouble keeping track, which may get worse, considering family history.
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User: deborahjross
Date: 2011-10-20 16:20 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Sending you warm thoughts as you walk through this difficult time.
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Dave O'Neill
User: daveon
Date: 2011-10-20 17:46 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I've noticed a few very poor type setting issues - missing quotes closing speech and so on, and there's some stuff which...

... we'll I'm concerned that they weren't caught in editing is all. Some of the language is clumsy, and there's some repetition of stuff, sometimes in paragraphs - not as bad as in Unseen Academicals but pretty close. I don't know if it's his illness really starting to kick in (which would be sad) or just really piss poor editors.
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User: biomekanic
Date: 2011-10-21 04:39 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Agreed. It's like the editor isn't even trying.

I picked up Westerfield's Goliath today, and the quality is night and day compared to Snuff.
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Dave O'Neill
User: daveon
Date: 2011-10-21 15:53 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
After I've read a TP I normally read it to my wife - it's a "thing" we do. Unseen Academicals was almost unreadable outload sadly.

She's a huge fan of the guards though, but I'm finding reading Snuff out loud to be hard going. There's a lot of repetition, and some poor word choices which don't seem to be vintage Pratchett.

From what I know of his journalist writing style and habits I think we're seeing a combination of editors not having had to bother and his writing becoming more laboured. I read an interview with him that he struggles with more than a few hundred words a day now and he used to be able to do a few hundred words an hour of almost finished prose.
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User: martianmooncrab
Date: 2011-10-20 19:05 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
my “hit the wall” phase

the wall is there for a reason, when you get to it, turn around and lean up against it, savor the moment of the day while resting and regrouping. I look for the lower portion of the wall where you can sit on it, and once you catch your breath, you can swing your legs over it and contemplate the next thing to do. It helps if the wall has bathrooms built into it.
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User: supersniffles
Date: 2011-10-20 21:22 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I use 'puter as my short form. I don't believe I have *ever* used 'lappy' or 'compy'.
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User: mmegaera
Date: 2011-10-21 03:11 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I'd never heard the terms "lappy" or "compy" until this post. And as my good Southern mother would say, you could have talked all day without saying that [g].

Seconding martianmooncrab's recommendations about that nasty wall.
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User: (Anonymous)
Date: 2011-10-21 04:34 (UTC)
Subject: Hug surrogate?
I can't come down for the funeral tomorrow, would you be able to give our red-headed friend a great big hug for me, too? Thanks, Julie N
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