This has been a very productive weekend for me. It has also been ridden with technical foul-ups. I wrote a lot, managed some of the writing, did some desk work for my job, and accomplished some errands. At the same time, there were issues in logging in, downloading and uploading stuff, and preparing manuscript.
Forgetting that I had only finished half of the last story I want to include in the Confessions compilation, I went about uploading it, only to run into some hitches. I tried publishing a preview of this work before, which was a violation of rules and therefore got unpublished but not deleted by the administrator. The text remains and there exist some procedures to replace it and upload it again, but I am blocked because the system will not do any action on any piece of work with this full title, Confessions of a Klutz. I eventually found a way around it by simply re-naming and re-registering the piece. Then I tried to fiddle around with a cover photo for awhile, with unsatisfactory results. However, it is present and published on Smashwords. The thing now is that I will have to replace it and republish it anyway after completing the last part.
It being the day I am supposed to call to my family in Canada, I tried to log in but had forgotten the password, and some phishing was happening so that I kept getting some Korean provider of Skype requiring registration and a larger than normal payment. I could not even find the real main website of Skype at first. Eventually, I did. I almost succumbed to the phishing for fees in that I was blocked and needed to get the program functioning again. Fortunately, the payment did not go through and I was lucky enough to discover that I had to upgrade to the latest version of Skype. After some hesitation on the part of system windows, menus and execution boxes, it finally got done. I blew away two hours like that.
I have also been getting things ready to wrap up the last volume of this project, A Year of Living Positively. Lately, I’ve been trying to sort out the blog entry numbering, because I am at blog 351 when I should be at number 358 today, considering that I will reach my goal of 365 days of blogging in a week, the day after my birthday. It turns out that the third volume of blogs is wrongly numbered. Therefore, I searched for a copy of it on my system and flash drives, to no avail. That is why I looked for a way to download my own material from the Smashwords site, again without results. I had to send a message to the Smashwords tech support for a solution. Meanwhile, I hope to find the missing file on the computer that is in the campus office, but I forgot to look for it this afternoon when I was there because I got immersed in some marking. I was able to see enough of the available read-only sample on my Smashwords page and found where the mistaken numbering went off the rails. It is not surprise that there are errors because I traveled twice while I was composing Volume Three, once to the Netherlands and Italy for meetings and sightseeing, and again for the Japan part of the Peace Solidarity tour. There were thus delays in typing up the blogs, and difficulties in transferring the text from my net book to the USB and Edwise pages.
At least a lot of the office work got done today, so that I should sleep better tonight. Last night, I was wakeful for a long time after writing three anecdotes for Confessions and working on the blog well into the evening (always a mistake if I want a full night’s sleep afterward). Well, the a marathon showing of all seasons of the amazing dramatic-comedic series “Breaking Bad” has been playing on the Sundance non-commercial channel all weekend, day and night, and I could not resist the temptation until well past midnight. Anyway, I kept thinking of errands and teaching related work that I need to do this week. I trudged up the hill and entered my office for a good stint this afternoon, following lunch of an onion and mushroom omelet. I figured out a marking scheme and wrote up score sheets for all the 45 oral interviews. I’ll do some of the interviews this Wednesday. I also looked over the lengthy semester-long journals of the graduate class. Thank goodness there are no more than four students in that group! Anyway, two of the students did an excellent and ambitious job, writing pages of reflections for each weekly entry. They were really thorough, thoughtful and well organized. The journals seemed to have served well as a study tool, as well as a tool for self-improvement and teaching development. I figured out how to mark them after I had looked at all of these journals, then assigned grades. I was pleased with their work and satisfied by having found a solution to this marking scheme in addition to the oral exam scheme.
It feels nice to be already wrapping up this semester well, especially with my birthday coming and the end of this blogging project on the horizon.