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C James

Where the hell is the final chapter!?!?!?

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There are two tricks that might help you. The first one, assuming you are writing in Word or another wordprocessor program is to change the font. I find it can help you spot the "Paris in the the spring" type mistakes where although it'll pass all spelling tests, is still wrong.

 

The other one, and you need to do this very fastidiously, is to read the work aloud. 

 

I do agree though, it is stacks easier to find errors in someone else's work than in you own.

 

Those are both excellent ideas! I'll try them both on the epilogue.

 

BTW, the "Paris in the the spring" is a rare one for me (Word usually catches it) but what is common for me is the opposite; "Paris the spring" leaving out a two or three letter word. I'm also notorious for swapping out for our and similar.  Actually, I just looked at the coming chapter and see that I did make a duplicate mistake, but Word didn't catch it (it was caught in beta, thanks guys!) because it was a repeated phrase rather than a repeated word. This, like many of my goofs, arises during the writing process; I often cut and past to rearrange and then rewrite. Unfortunately, I often make errors when I do so.

 

 

Thanks for the update, CJ. It's actually fascinating (to me, anyway) to learn about all of the steps and hard work it takes to get a chapter ready for posting. And all of this effort is totally voluntary. Yes, it's frustrating to endure the waits, but a lot easier when you understand the process a little better. Kudos to your incredible team!!

 

Thanks!!!

 

One thing I want to take the opportunity to mention here; betaing and editing is very hard and exacting work, and as you mention, the team does this voluntarily. Also, unlike the author, they rarely get the public credit for the story.

 

Well done, CJ. A couple of funny replies in there...kneecaps, yep.

 

Doing all those kneecaps isn't easy, but he's very good at it, and loves his work.  :)

 

 

I want to apologize for my negativity lately.  I am turning into a grumpy old man.  CJ, you and your team do a wonderful job on this story.  I think all of us that read it realize how much effort it takes to do such a quality job.  My sister-in-law made me promise to go to the doctor next week if my sprained ankle isn't much better by Monday.  Maybe that will save me from becoming more of a GRUMPY OLD MAN.

 

Thanks again to the whole team for your hard work and thanks for the update.

 

 

No apologies needed! :) I do understand.

 

I hope the ankle gets better. :hug:

 

Im not being negative, here. I'm being realistic, and keeping my expectations low. Big chapter, lots of beta reading, lots of work to do, and lots of "it's almost ready". It'll be here when it gets posted, and I don't think I can reliably expect CJ and the team to say when that will be, so I'm planning for it to be ready in a couple of weeks.

 

I think you are wise. I also think, and hope, that it will be far sooner. 

 

 

 

Yup, needs a very deliberate approach to catch to, two, too transpositions.

 

Transpositions are a common problem for me. One I'm notorious for is swapping out for our.

 

 

Spellcheck programs catch about 10% of the errors that I find.  All the homophones in English evade the best spellcheck.  Reading slowly and deliberately are the only approach that works for me.

 

 

You catch some errors with spellcheck? What programs do you use? I run it through Word 2002 at least once... Hrmmm, maybe I should try making a second run through open office (another word processing program I have installed).

 

BTW, to give ya'll an idea of what Mike and the rest of the team have to put up with, let me mention that Homophones are a particular issue for me; I make a lot of goofs in that regard. I'm dyslexic, so I literally don't see them. That's also, probably, why I make many transposition errors. And, as I'm sure all of you can see from my forum posts, I make a lot of goofs of all kinds. 

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B) .........Well thanks CJ for the tidbit about a 'possible' posting of the last chapter over the weekend. Patience is a virtue, however I have no virtues! :P

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You catch some errors with spellcheck? What programs do you use? I run it through Word 2002 at least once... Hrmmm, maybe I should try making a second run through open office (another word processing program I have installed).

 

I use Open Office Writer, but keep the file I receive from C J in Word format.  As I read and find an obvious error, I just type over the incorrect word.  The Open Office editor strikes through the word I am changing and inserts the correct word underlined, so it's easy for C J to see what I've changed.  He can then decide to make the change in his master copy or not.  I can also insert comments in the margin if I have a question or suggestion for C J to consider.

 

After the first reading, I run the Open Office spellcheck and consider each "error" it identifies.  The majority of these are proper names or words that are not in the spellcheck's dictionary.  I will ignore proper names, add words to the dictionary, or change any misspelled word it finds.  Probably 99% of spellcheck's "errors" are not errors at all.

 

Then I read the chapter a second time.  It always surprises me how many things I find to change the second time...sometimes nearly as many as the first time.

 

When that is done, I e-mail the annotated Word document back to C J.

 

Then I wait like everyone else.  :P

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B) .........Well thanks CJ for the tidbit about a 'possible' posting of the last chapter over the weekend. Patience is a virtue, however I have no virtues! :P

 

ROFL!!!

 

Yes... I've noticed... you've even accused me of the most unspeakable things (cliffhangers). Shame on you! :P

 

 

 
I use Open Office Writer, but keep the file I receive from C J in Word format.  As I read and find an obvious error, I just type over the incorrect word.  The Open Office editor strikes through the word I am changing and inserts the correct word underlined, so it's easy for C J to see what I've changed.  He can then decide to make the change in his master copy or not.  I can also insert comments in the margin if I have a question or suggestion for C J to consider.
 
After the first reading, I run the Open Office spellcheck and consider each "error" it identifies.  The majority of these are proper names or words that are not in the spellcheck's dictionary.  I will ignore proper names, add words to the dictionary, or change any misspelled word it finds.  Probably 99% of spellcheck's "errors" are not errors at all.
 
Then I read the chapter a second time.  It always surprises me how many things I find to change the second time...sometimes nearly as many as the first time.
 
When that is done, I e-mail the annotated Word document back to C J.
 
Then I wait like everyone else.  :P

 

 

I'll try running it through Open Office after Word next time. Thanks!! :)

 

I've noticed the dyslexia that CJ kindly admitted to having. It makes the letters move in the replies that he types.

 

ROFL!!! I like the way you put it. :)

 

I was diagnosed with dyslexia when I was 9, and I find it affects me in some ways more than others. Look-alike words are a huge area of trouble for me. So too is spelling. For the later, spell-check helps, but not if I've used a look alike word. For forum posts, it's even worse lately; my browser spell-check sometimes does not work with forum posts. Usually it underlines a misspelled word, but sometimes it doesn't. Hrmmm, like right now, it's not underlining thiis word.

 

Heh, sometimes the goofs I make are good for a laugh. For example, more than one team member had a good chuckle when I typed sue instead of use, and had Trevor suing an ATM. :) 

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I'll try running it through Open Office after Word next time. Thanks!! :)

 

Don't expect too much, C J.

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Don't expect too much, C J.

 

 

I won't, but it can't hurt to try, as I already have open office installed. If it catches even one goof, that's one less headache I'll be inflicting on the team. :)

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Hey,,,,,I'm usually pretty good catching those funny mistakes in the copy......didn't see the "sue the ATM" reference though, I don't think. Anyway, that's a good one.

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There are two tricks that might help you. The first one, assuming you are writing in Word or another wordprocessor program is to change the font. I find it can help you spot the "Paris in the the spring" type mistakes where although it'll pass all spelling tests, is still wrong.

 

The other one, and you need to do this very fastidiously, is to read the work aloud. 

 

I do agree though, it is stacks easier to find errors in someone else's work than in you own.

 

Interesting, Nick. I use both of these techniques when Zeta-reading (whatever that is) the chapters. Firstly, I read through whatever CJ sends me. There are only occasional catches from the spell-checker, which is hardly surprising as CJ also has a spell-checker. Generally, the first read is at normal speed as I, like everyone else, just want to find out what happens next.

 

Secondly, I reformat the whole document to, usually, comic sans. I find it makes the differences between letters more obvious and it also shifts the line breaks to different places. This second read is much slower - I'm trying to consider each word and sentence as a collection of words as much as part of a story. Do the words make sense? Are they the words CJ thinks they are?

 

There can be occasional problems as, being British, I sometimes have different ideas about what is "correct". I have several American friends and relations and, over the years, I've become used to many common Americanisms but there are always new ones to learn. Sometimes I correct, sometimes I add a comment suggesting that something sounds odd to me but that, obviously, CJ's use of US English is better than mine.

 

In the scenes in Australia and the Falklands, I insisted on the UK spellings for words such as Harbour.  I ran a few questions past Australian friends where possible to check on their usage - it's generally closer to the UK than the US but it's actually a version to itself. For the same reason, I've "corrected" some of Shane's usages away from obvious Americanisms.

 

After the second run-through, I make a pdf of the document and use Acrobat reader's "read out loud" feature. This almost always catches more errors, especially things like "later" and "latter" where it's so easy just to read what's obviously intended but which sound different. This can also catch repeated words and missing words which are easy to overlook. The reading is quite slow, too, which forces me to slow down as I read along and this also helps. I always try to do this final read-through in one or two sittings to help spot continuity errors.

 

I know CJ always insists that the final responsibility is his, but I get very embarrassed when someone points out something I've missed, especially when it's actually quite obvious...

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Soooo, by my silly little countdown timer in my signature, I think I started it around 176 days.

 

Since we are so close to the 100 day mark, would any of you mind waiting another six days if it is ready today? :D

 

*runs and hides so the lynch mob can't find me*

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Another trick when you're reading a story out loud is to expand contractions. It's becomes it is, can't becomes can not, etc. That will slow you down and encourage you to read more slowly and carefully.

 

Colin B)

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Another trick when you're reading a story out loud is to expand contractions. It's becomes it is, can't becomes can not, etc. That will slow you down and encourage you to read more slowly and carefully.

 

Colin B)

 

Not to mention catching all those places where "it's" should be "its" and vice versa...

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Waiting for the final chapter has yielded some fascinating insight into the world of beta readers and/or editors. As I said in a previous post, I had no idea of the work involved in getting a story ready for posting or publication. So here's another question for any of you on CJ's team. How did you become a beta reader or editor for CJ or another GA author? Any special qualifications? Did you have to "audition"? It's just curiosity to go along with my newfound respect for you and the role you fill in our reading enjoyment. (Thanks again!)

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I was editing for a few authors before I joined GA back in 2006. I think it was during our time together on the Writers Support Team that brought us into a working relationship.

 

It was with chapter 38 of Changing Lanes that I started beta reading for CJ. At the time, I was the Editing Lead for a program run by the WST and he was looking for another beta reader for his team and since I had been following his work, I volunteered. I just happened to have my flash drive with me here at work so I was able to pinpoint a date easier.

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I've never been part of CJ's Team, something about not wanting a no good for nothing Canadian working for him or something like that 0:) .

 

What I can tell you is that we met early on when he was posting For The Love in the old eFic section for non Hosted and we interacted on his topic and through PM's. CJ would occasionally ask me to look at something or possibly how feasible something might be within a chapter. I would help out where I could. Truth be told, I really didn't think I could measure up to be a beta for him. At the time I was in awe of Graeme, Bondwriter, Captain Rick and Emoe. First of all to be able to tolerate CJ, but more importantly help him turn out such amazing stories :) .

 

Occasionally authors will post for an editor or beta reader and then it is matter of finding a comfortable fit I do believe. GA does offer a Editor and Beta Reader match up where we try to not only help Authors, but develop and improve Editors. Jan and Cia, as head of the WST heads up that team and they have a dedicated forum here.

 

Myself, over the years I have been asked to beta and then on occasion edit a chapter or then a story. Call me crazy but I have been helping out Krista for a couple of years. Another problem too is that like Authors on the internet come and go, unfortunately betas and editors come and go as well. I think this is really how I started helping Krista and not really for my skills :P . Besides, the good fights we have over a chapter keeps us both entertained :) .

 

Still, I'm still amazed at the work that first CJ puts forth but always know that there is a team of dedicated people behind him that make his writing so damn good! This is also why I will tease and bug CJ, but I will never be hard on him or his team. I'm grateful for every word that makes it to my computer screen.

Edited by wildone
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Excellent points, fascinating conversation.......thanks for the background everyone!! It is amazing what goes into writing a story of this magnitude and quality. It is an absolute joy to have found this story and ventured into these forums. You are all unique and interesting and you've added your own nuggets of wisdom. Not only has this been a great pleasure for the quality of the story but the behind the scenes information and the interaction of the audience.....can't get this just anywhere......very wonderful experience to be had by visiting GA.

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Waiting for the final chapter has yielded some fascinating insight into the world of beta readers and/or editors. As I said in a previous post, I had no idea of the work involved in getting a story ready for posting or publication. So here's another question for any of you on CJ's team. How did you become a beta reader or editor for CJ or another GA author? Any special qualifications? Did you have to "audition"? It's just curiosity to go along with my newfound respect for you and the role you fill in our reading enjoyment. (Thanks again!)

 

I forget the exact sequence but I think I posted a comment on one of CJ's stories as my first ever posting and CJ sent me a PM welcoming me to the forum. We swapped PMs for a while and then email addresses and discussed a wide range of things outwith his stories as well as the tales themselves. We agree on almost nothing, as far as I can tell, but we have some great discussions. You can imagine, though, that it can be quite scary arguing with someone like CJ - his level of research is not confined just to his story-writing.

 

Over time, I sent him a few corrections I'd noticed in some of the chapters for which he thanked me. Out of the blue he wrote and asked if I'd take on the proof-reading role as the previous incumbent wasn't able to continue. I was very flattered to be asked and, I have to confess, I was also keen to see the chapters a few days early!

 

I'm reasonably good at grammar and spelling - the result of an old-fashioned education a long time ago. On the other hand, I have no imagination whatsoever. CJ recently explained to me some of the process that led to Circumnavigation and he makes it sound so simple. He's always very generous in his praise for the team but, in my case, you wouldn't really see any difference if my stage were dropped. There would be some spelling mistakes and some misplaced punctuation for sure, but the story would not be fundamentally different. The others - editors, advisers on various aspects of the story - make much more difference, I think. Editing is a very particular skill which I don't have. Proof-reading is much easier.

 

So I don't know how you get to be a member of the team. It just happened to me...

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Let's have some fun with this......supposing that since the chapter has now been returned to CJ.......and he believes it'll post sometime later today. Let's see who can guess the hour. It's now just over 2.5 hours since he announced that he has it.....

 

I'll say 4am.

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Let's have some fun with this......supposing that since the chapter has now been returned to CJ.......and he believes it'll post sometime later today. Let's see who can guess the hour. It's now just over 2.5 hours since he announced that he has it.....

 

I'll say 4am.

 

B) ......................My guess is 9pm PST

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I'll go with a 105 days :)

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As I noted in my profile, it's already tomorrow for most of the world................

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