Didn’t Catch it in the Newsroom

Good afternoon everyone — at least that’s where we are at in our day. Thanks to streaming we were able to listen to a church service in Quebec, part of one in Manitoba, and our own here in Sask. Now we have a brilliant blue sky and warm sunshine, the birds are dragging sticks and straws to various nests, and I’d best send out my response to today’s prompt.

Do I dare ask if you’ve tried the new editor? Yesterday I was reading several other bloggers’ thoughts and experiences with this complicated new Block Editor. Not many sweet notes in their song; so far the chorus sounds more like “Aargh…Why! Why!” My own gripe is that I have to go through my post and Justify every single paragraph — one by one — and then I can’t see that it has been done until it’s published. Aargh.

The Ragtag Daily Prompt, contributed by yours truly, is JOURNALIST. Do hop over and check out the links to see what others are posting about this subject. There’s a wide range of interpretations here.

Now, here’s my contribution:

In his book, A Way With Words, ©1979, Canadian newsman Bill Cameron takes a light-hearted look at some of the journalistic bloopers he’s seen in his day and suggests ways writers can clarify their writing. No more, I saw the fox run through the field looking through my binoculars.” 🙂

One thing he mentions is that a reporter should follow an order and always state at the beginning of the story what it’s about. Here’s the opening line of a story once printed in the Regina paper. How did this one sneak past the editor?
“An intricate breeding style, developed through a boyhood hobby, is fast turning into a full-time vocation for a Kantsay district farmer and his wife.”
The reporter does explain a few lines down that said farmer and wife were having great success at breeding and raising some type of livestock, but Mr Cameron thinks that lead-in produced many a chuckle.

Here’s another, from a Saskatoon paper’s editorial of bygone days:
Speaking of expensive frills in modern houses, the writer explains how “dining rooms were once considered necessary because the old-type kitchen was not suitable for eating.

Don’t panic, dear readers. I haven’t heard of any Canadians who actually tried to eat their kitchen.

Mr Cameron stresses that every writer “should look over everything they write with the most critical eye they can muster. Read it over. Read it out loud. Better, have a friend read it over to you.”

After all, to air is human — and your Spell checker will miss a few, too.

He admits that sometimes they get a great lead to an article and can’t use it because it would be in such poor taste. For example, When J Edgar Hoover died, a fellow editor in the newsroom suggested as a lead to the obituary, ‘The death of J Edgar Hoover has left at vacuum at the FBI’. It gave them a quick chuckle, but they knew it wouldn’t be well accepted.

Do you think journalists and editors in our day ever reject a story because it’s in poor taste?

Still Learning…

This is the book of verses I published a year ago;
at present it’s only available as an e-book, but I hope to do a print version soon.
Meanwhile, I’m learning how to set up an Amazon book “block”

Though Christmas is long past, I read this book last month and thought it was terrific. One of those home and family feel-good stories about a widow who learns to accept the unusual when a stray pooch, a grouchy neighbor and a run-away granddaughter show up on her property. The routine of her life and her current plans are blown to pieces and she finds something far better.
The URL I’ve embedded in this block is for Amazon.com.

Last Call for Learning?

Good morning everyone!

We have a beautiful day here on the prairies, which is not exactly what we would wish for, but you don’t always get what you wish for. If we did, some people would leave well enough alone and stop “improving” things, right?

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is the simple word CALL. I expect I’m going to be calling for help many times, as I try to get used to the new editor. WordPress has announced that they’re retiring the old editor on June 1st — though us die-hards can still access it and use it, apparently. But for how long?

The new editor, as I see all the complexities of it, reminds me of a Rubic’s cube — and I never was good at those. Last night, after seeing their post with the announcement I spent a good while doing a few extra posts, going back and forth to the WordPress website, trying to figure out how to operate this complex new system. I haven’t mastered inserting images yet.

Image by succo at Pixabay

Heretofore I’ve basically used two “blocks”: I write paragraphs and paste in images. I could block my whole text to Justify; now I must do it paragraph by paragraph as each paragraph seems to be considered a block. And the sidebar had all the info I needed. Last night I spent five minutes on each post trying to figure out how to access the Categories and Tags. I think I’ve got that now. So much to learn as the stream of technological advancements pulls sticks-in-the-mud like me along with it.

There are supposed to be different fonts; I haven’t discovered them yet. On the other hand, I really like the new range of colours available for the type! But you have to write the number down or you can’t get back to it, should you decide to add something.

Speaking of attractive colours, hummingbirds have been seen in our area, so I’d best get my feeders up. Have a great day everyone, and do stop over at the Ragtag Community blog to see what other folks are posting in response to this prompt.

This is MY Chair

Ragtag Prompt Word today: SURRENDER
Word of the Day challenge: QUICK

Things are going slower than usual this morning, since I surrendered to an extra two hours of sleep. I let the cats in at 5:30 am, but decided it was just too early and went back to bed. So it does.

I got to thinking of de- words, like delight, deform, debase, etc., and wrote a post over at Word Buds on the word DESULTORY. This has quite an interesting root, salire meaning TO LEAP. You can read my post HERE.

As I was typing merrily away, posted my work, and went out to the kitchen for something. Came back and found my cat Angus — always quick to seize an opportunity of this nature — was curled up in my desk chair, prepared to nap for a few hours. Too bad for him! I wanted to do more on the computer and would not surrender my chair. “I’m going to sit here,” I informed him as I pulled him off and dumped him on the floor. His disgruntled look expressed his displeasure.

Cat.Angus.Alina Kuptsova
Alina Kuptsova —  Pixabay

But another opportunity afforded itself; he headed for Bob’s vacant chair and with one quick leap he’d claimed that. It looks like he may even catch forty winks before the owner thereof returns to demand it back. And by then I’ll be occupied with other things and my chair will be empty.

The Jibber Jabber with Sue prompt word for today is SILENCE, and I guess that apart from her scheduled writing prompt words, there is silence over at her blog as she takes a writing break.

There may be silence at our house — especially since I haven’t put in  my hearing aids yet — but there’s no silence outdoors. The birds start expressing their views at dawn and twitter until the daylight fades. We had a real treat yesterday afternoon, looking out the dining room window and seeing goldfinches at our niger-seed feeder. First ones we’ve seen this spring. Friends say they saw some, too, so the flock must have just arrived from the sunny south.

Farmers have been seeding in hope. They are brave souls who seldom surrender to the elements, but it’s been quite dry. We’ve been promised an inch of rain Wed and we sure hope it comes. I remember back about thirty years ago environmentalists being concerned for the survival of migratory birds because so many sloughs and small lakes — their breeding grounds — had dried up. We may be back to that before long.

The old farmers talk about weather cycles, about ten years of wet followed by about ten years of dry — and we’ve seen this played out since we came back to SK. Back then the prairie was in the grip of a very dry spell, then the wet cycle started and we had 8-10 years of plenty. Sloughs hereabouts were as full as any of the old-times could remember and gravel roads needed to be built up higher. Now we’re into a dry cycle again; the huge sloughs beside us are dry.

Maybe our focus is very small, but prairie folks don’t soon get panicked about climate change — especially those who’ve lived through the 1930s. But drought is something we understand too well; all of us older ones have been through a number of these cycles. Our young teens haven’t seen a real drought.

Please pardon my ramblings. Stay safe and have a great week, everyone.
Stores here open tomorrow. 🙂

Party.OCArt

Rosy Outlook in the Distance

Good morning everyone,

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is ROSY HUES

I arose just before 6 am this morning, but the rosy hues of dawn were long gone. The sky was bright, the birds going about their business, and the temp was just above freezing. But the predicted high is 25 C and the sky is blue above us: the makings of a warm spring day.

Perhaps the prompt-giver was thinking of other ROSY HUES — figurative ones — which I also thought of this morning. A few days ago my husband informed me his favorite book store in the city plans to open next week, along with other stores. Access limited to fifteen people at a time, but still.. The dawning of a new era.

one by one restrictions lift
people begin to breathe
to move about, to gather
cautiously at first

stores open their doors
employees take their places
the world faces a new dawn
its
rosy hues
still in the distance

Dawn.analogicus
             Image by analogicus from Pixabay