Still in extended day-of-rest mode after finally finishing off the large academic anthology plus a last-minute math paper. Tina is busily rewriting her resumé and trying to write a convincing statement about why she wants to go to law school. It seems like a slam-dunk to me…her background is just the thing to entice a law-school selection committee. To say nothing of a law firm’s hiring committee.
Despite feeling like hibernation would be the best course just now, I finished off a couple of small bidness-related matters while loafing around, fooling with Facebook, cruising the Internet, and playing computer games.
Did manage to prune an overgrown rose, a project I’ve put off interminably. The climbing roses look OK, probably because they’ve had so much water over the winter…and for a change I didn’t neglect them quite so shamelessly last summer.
Still need to spray bugicide all over the west side, another project that I’m having a hard time forcing myself to do.
Last year, I learned from a Home Depot guy who claimed to have been an arborist that a particular bug spray, if applied as a soak to the ground around an infested paloverde, actually will make a dent in the supposedly invincible paloverde beetle population. So I applied it in the spring, but then was too damn lazy (and cheap: the stuff is mightily expensive!) to apply it in mid-summer, when I should’ve.
Nevertheless, only about half as many monster beetles emerged than came up in the prior year’s crop. That was impressive.
So I figured January would be a good time to apply another layer of the stuff…especially now, while the ground is very damp. Didn’t get around to it today…so MUST do that tomorrow.
Still trying to make the background gradient work a little better…because i are a english major, i are not a artist, getting it more or less right involves endless trial and error. But I did contrive to get the spine copy and logo in place, rewrite the back cover copy (which, as we scribble, I see contains yet another goddamn error), and realize that I probably could widen the cover 1 image enough for it to run all the way over the bleed margin without distorting the cover lines. Much. Hm. That’s for the next draft.
The damn image wants to snap to grid, even though I’ve turned off that function. And…I think I’ve overestimated the width of the righthand bleed margin, so I could in theory not run it all the way to the edge of the PPt slide without risk to the subtitle’s cover lines. Maybe. Maybe not.
Nor do I feel especially thrilled about the Cover 4 copy, anyway. It’s too verbose. Later. Figure that out later…
My e-book designer seems to have tabled the ePub/Kindle version of this thing, so it looks like either I’m going to have to find another formatter who has the skills to handle illustrations in ebooks — not an easy trick — or I’m going to have to learn to do it myself.
In the course of thrashing around over that, I discovered the updated iBook Author, an Apple program designed for creating fairly elaborate formats — including illustrations — for publication on iTunes. As it develops, more recent versions will convert the finished product to ePub and will carry over fairly simple illustration, such as diagrams and simple figures, without much distortion. It looks like it wouldn’t be too hard to learn. There’d be a learning curve, a protein to which I’ve developed an allergy of late, but it doesn’t look insurmountable.
Unfortunately, I’d have to update to OSX 11. I don’t even know if this little computer would run OSX 11, nor do I know whether Wyrd will run on it. Newer versions of OSX will not run MS Office unless — in some cases — Office was already installed at the time the program was upgraded.
If I upgrade and the new operating system trashes my Word and Excel programs, I am screwed. As in royally screwed: it will put me out of business. We rely on Word’s “track changes” function, which does not translate to the Apple ecoystem.
My only choice, if I want to stay in business, would than be to buy a new PC from Costco, where I can get a copy of Office on disk (thereby obviating the need to do all my work and my client’s work in Microsoft’s cloud, which I do not want to do and will not do).
Really, I should do that anyway, so as to get ahold of that Office program while it still can be had on disk. If it still can be had. And really, I do need to switch back to the PC.
It’s just that I don’t want to. And I dread it. Can’t even say how much I dread having to relearn Microsoft’s horrible operating system and fight the constant onslaught of malware with the dreadful, system-clogging antivirus software and cope with the cheesy hardware that’s “old” after about three years. Ugh, ugh, and triple-ugh. But since sooner or later Apple is going to upgrade me out of business, no doubt it’s foolish to continue much longer without a PC.
Anyway, given that the PC purchase can’t be put off much longer and at least one of these two Macs needs its operating system updated anyway, I might as well buy and learn iBook Author and the ancillary programs you have to buy to run beside it. That way I could not only do my own eBook formatting, in theory I could do it for clients, too. And I could produce bookoids in iBook format, which can be pretty darned classy.
I see that iTunes has some blandishments for first-time uploaders. I never did load the Fire-Rider volumes or the cookbook to Barnes & Noble or to iTunes, mostly because I don’t have ePub versions. Supposedly they exist, but my friend has never sent them over. It would be fairly easy to create iBook versions of the novel. The cookbook, not so much. But…if I could extract the ePubs from the formatting dude, it can be imported into iBook Author. For that matter, supposedly things can be imported from a decently formatted Word file…but there’s a wind I’ve heard blow before. 😀
Well, it’s nearly 10 p.m. I’m hungry. And tired. And so, away!