A little lighter issue this month, almost no fucking swearing.
Zombies, a Novel is making excellent progress, 17254 words.
I have also started a Query letter for Zombies. ... I will need lots of editing time to get that right.
This month I have another recipe for you, and a new feature, an outright book review.
In future newsletters I will review some of the recent books that I have read. AuthorTube books, and other books relating to my learning curve as an author will be reviewed as well.
Monthly Newb Moment
MAC Newb II
Things are settling down computer-wise. Life with a PC, and a MAC is. ... different.
I have had a similar setup (KVM switch) before with a windows XP, and a windows 10 machine. It was simpler, the difference being, no learning curve, like with the MAC. I still have a legal seat of AutoCAD 2006 on the windows XP machine. Ahh, the good old days.
Just an FYI for other computer nerds out there:
DELFTship (hull modeling)
Xara Web Designer Premium
Topstyle Pro 3 (CSS)
Junior Icon Editor (favicons)
Paintshop Pro X8 (heavy duty graphics)
Apache Open Office
Snowflake Pro (it did not behave on the MAC)
Hemingway (cheap, but I'm not paying again for a MAC version)
GIMP (light weight graphics)
Hello Fresh (trial period only, another six months should see a decision)
Emails are on both machines, but I have decided to almost exclusively check email on the MAC. The whole point of this is to write, so keeping the PC turned off unless I need it is SOP.
Toughest thing to get used to on the MAC: Using command-left arrow/command-right arrow to go to the "home" and "end" of a line of text.
Weirdest thing on a MAC: Shaking the mouse to show the location of the cursor. This makes the cursor larger, briefly, allowing you to see where it is. Weird.
As I am right-handed, yet mouse with my left hand, I am barely co-ordinated enough to do the required motion. I know, weird.
Second weirdest thing on a MAC: How badly it handles memory. It has 8GB. On a windows machine I would have ordered at least twice, preferably four times, that.
I figured Apple knew what they were doing. Wrong. I had to install a memory cleaner, the MAC mini was noticeably slowing down when doing even routine file management tasks. It may end up being called apple before long. Yes, the M1 chip seems to be as fast, as powerful as advertised, but Apple, give it enough memory to work with. Jeesh.
Yes, when you purchase a MAC mini you have the option of selecting 16GB of RAM. Do it, I wish I had.
Scrivener is behaving itself, so far. A full report will be in a future newsletter.
Favourite thing in Scrivener on a MAC: when you highlight a word and delete it, one of the two spaces surrounding it is automatically deleted.
I have created a "Collection" of eight related scenes, which is what seemed to trigger the bad behaviour in the windows version. A lot was going on at the time but, that was the most obvious thing.
So far, the MAC version of Scrivener is behaving itself after creating, and using a Collection.
On the Beach
by Nevil Shute
I first read On the Beach in grade twelve. Reading On the Beach was the best part of English class that year.
I had never read a book like it. It was truly a horror story. I don't want to give too much away, but the story takes place in Australia, after a nuclear war in the northern hemisphere has apparently wiped out all life north of the equator.
Rereading it 44 years later, it is still horrifying, yet, I was struck by how repetitive, and silly the characters, and many of the plot points were.
Is this because I read it the second time as a writer? I'm not sure. Did Nevil Shute write it in this way as his interpretation of how people would react in that situation? Did he write it like that to make sure the reader got what was going on? Maybe both? Certainly. Maybe. I'm not sure.
He surely would not, and did not place crowds of people in complete denial, to the point of arguing, and physically fighting with others that did understand what was about to happen. Not that that could happen. ...
I know that while the science of the time was not up on exactly what would happen after a nuclear war, that did not come across either time I read it. It does not seem to matter, it is horrifically real enough as is.
This is not a book I will reread 20 times, twice is enough. However, it is not a book that should be ignored just because it might not be pleasant at times.
Read it at least once. Highly recommended.
Set oven to 350°F.
4 1/2 tablespoons cocoa
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/4 cups brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
0. Cream sugar and butter well.
1. Add eggs and beat well.
2. Add vanilla....
3. Add sifted flour and cocoa.
4. Mix well and drop by spoon onto a lightly buttered cookie sheet. Bake 10-12 Min.
5. Let cool for 2 minutes before removing from cookie sheet. This is important, do not skip.
6. DO NOT OVER COOK ! Hot cookies will be very soft even when done.
This is from an 1800's cookbook I borrowed from the library in Kingston, Ontario in the early 1980's.
The original recipe called for 1 tablespoon of cocoa: I repeatedly increased it by a half-tablespoon at a time until they stopped getting better.
Confession: In my early twenties, I practically lived off of Chocolate Fudgies, and Snickerdoodles.
Future newsletters may have Frequently Asked Questions. Send your question(s) to: Eric.
That's all for this month!
Eric C Bailey, October 14, 2021
The Newb Files, Science Fiction and Fantasy
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