Wednesday, December 20, 2006

What Work Is

I am not having much fun. Briefly, here is the problem. My manuscript is due at the press on or before January 2. It is finished, polished and ready to go. But the manuscript was typed on an old Power MacIntosh 7200/75 in some ancient version of Microsoft Works. It never occured to me that it would be impossible to get this converted somehow––okay, I am an IDIOT--into a version of Word. Well, forget it. I can't even get the thing onto a disc. I also can't scan it in--the manuscript comes out after scanning in about six different fonts (sizes and types) and won't "move" on the page; it seemingly can't be edited.

Solution? Think fast. I had to buy and install Word and am retyping the entire manuscript into my laptop. What, you ask, have I been using for word processing on the new computers? Appleworks. I've been thinking that I should buy Word but I never got around to it, and the book was so close to "completion" on the old computer that I decided not to transfer it to my new computers. I figured I would just final-edit and proof the manuscript "in place" and start new projects on the new computers--which is what I have done.

Had I tried to make the switch--I had plenty of time to try--I might have figured out several months ago that it was impossible and been able to proceed at a more leisurely pace.


I'm sure there is a more elegant solution than what I have elected to do, but as must be obvious, I am not particularly clever and buying the right software and plunging ahead seemed the simple solution.

At least, it was a solution that I understood.

The good news is that I am more than halfway through after installing Word yesterday afternoon and begining to type.

I haven't slept much, though.

I really am too old for this.


Blogger Diane K. Martin said...

Greg, try the following:

From the File menu, choose Save As.
Save the file as some kind of Rich Text Format (RTF). (That is, name it Whatever.rtf)

Next, if you have a USB port on your old computer, save the file to a flash drive. These can be bought in many places --including Target and Office Depot -- and can cost anywhere from $20-$60 or thereabouts, depending on capacity. You won't need very much for a poetry book.

Either that or email the file to yourself on the other computer where you have Word.

Once you get the file in that computer, you can open Word and then open the file and save it as a regular Word file. You may lose some formatting, but you will not lose everything.

Good luck. Email me if this isn't clear or you have questions.

11:55 PM  
Blogger greg rappleye said...


Thank you for the really good ideas. By noon I had only 15 pages to go, so I've plunged ahead. I've never used a flash drive--I've seen them; I know wht they are. Sort-of.

My old computer isn't even hooked up to the internet and (ergo) doesn't have e-mail. Technology-wise, I am a dinosaur desperately trying to enter the age of mammals.

The good news is that my daughter is coming home from college tomorrow and is going to help me set up links, ect. on my blog. She finds it endearing that I started a blog and hilarious that I am so inept at it.

Thanks for your note and Happy Holidays!
-Greg Rappleye

3:10 PM  

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