Friday, July 13, 2012

Where Have I Been?

I haven't been blogging much for a bit. Actually, I have been trying. Blogspot upgraded. My computer didn't. I keep getting these messages that my browser is unsupported and may result in unexpected behavior. I presume they mean in the blogging experience, not my personal behavior. Though, they're right about the glitches occurring, and it may tend to cause my own unexpected behavior.

No, come to think of it, it's entirely expected.

There's the beginnings of a story saved in draft form. I want to get back to it but it's been.... interesting. That's tactful enough, I think. If you see a posting about a murder in Georgia, you'll know I finished that one.

I've also been busy. I decided to pack up parts of the library. Just parts. Selected by author. Take all of a favorite author - or 20 - on hand, index it, remove double or tripple copies, and make a listing on computer. Order books to fill in gaps occasionally. Used, of course. Wait for them to arrive, read, index, and stack up to be packed as well. Oh, and before any of this happens, sort all the existing books into the shelves alphabetically by author.

Steve was real sweet tonight. He brought out a stack of books he's been hanging on to in his room. One of the authors has been packed up already. No biggie. There are more boxes. But two of the "missing" books have been replaced. Nice timing, dear.

I should mention I've already been thorough his shelves. I pulled out everything by several authors and combined libraries. I also added back into his shelves. For example, there are now two complete sets of J A Jance. We both have been collecting them. Arizona gets the full sets of Doss, Sanford, Patterson, etc. Incomplete sets stay here. And in all that, I still missed these books.

While we're talking busy, the 2012 Crex photo contest deadline is Sunday. This year I'm entering. In fact, have entered. I completely missed it last year, what with all that was going on then. But first, there was dragging out the laptop, camera, battery chargers, SD cards, and connector cables.

Ever try to find the exact cable which hooks a specific camera - of several - to the computer, out of a gallon jumble of cords and cables? The ones that go to everything?

Then there was downloading all the pictures taken to date, and the hunting for the picture to match the entry category. Now I don't take single pictures of anything. I take bunches. The camera is set on what used to be called motor drive, back in the old film days. I study it from all angles. So even if I know in my mind what picture I want to use, it's still a case of sorting through to find the exact very best version of that shot. On occasion there's even cropping. As if that's not enough, there are seven categories this year. I entered 5. It took all day, partly because my laptop refused to let me copy pictures into a new album or folder or whatever. I tried both. Repeatedly. Finally it let me copy onto the desktop, one jpg at a time, and then drag each one of those onto the window for the empty DVD.

Burning went off without a hitch.


The second my weary head hit the pillow, the mental engine reengaged and I came up with the shot for a 6th category. Of course I let it go till the next morning, when after sorting through the usual 50 shots - there was a reason this time, the dang thing kept moving and staying in camera range, back and forth ... hey, why do I sound like I'm complaining? - I finally found the very most perfect one. Of course this meant that I had to burn a new DVD.

And then after getting prints, one was badly centered and needed to be redone so a flower wasn't chopped up, and the black and white was in color because the edit to B&W didn't save properly. So I had to go back in, locate the picture again - out of nearly 16,000 in the library, and don't talk to me about editing out a bunch, I already know - and make sure it saved in B&W this time. It was hard  to tell because it nearly is a B&W already, just from the subject matter and background. But there are traces of brown. They showed. Anyway, it meant burning a third DVD, since unlike floppies they can't be rewritten. And one needed to not only go to the printer machine but accompany the prints in the submission.

I wound up with three trips to the printer too. But finally they were all compiled and delivered. If by chance you happen to be visiting Crex during the photo judging, you might consider voting for mine. I plan to. Steve's getting dragged along for his votes as well. Need a ride? Can you fit in the back? Can I bribe you with lunch?

They usually come with names of the photographer attached. I tried downloading (uploading?) the pictures into the blog this morning. After half an hour the first one was nearly finished. It stopped whicheverway-loading. Maybe I'll try again. Maybe. I really think you'll like the ones of the Bambi ribs. Or perhaps the weirdly formed dying puffball. Or perhaps the multi-splintered tree trunk is more your style, from back when the tornados went through, or the sandhill stopping traffic on the road, or the ladyslipper, or the ground squirrel.

Oops, it's tomorrow already. I should probably get some sleep. But that's why I haven't been blogging much lately. Thanks for asking.

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