Pulling out my last remaining hairs…

I’m old. Well, I’m 72, so I’m getting there. At any rate, I have high blood pressure, I’m not always real steady on my feet, and my hair is thinning more every day. Stress is not my friend, as it raises my blood pressure, causes my steps to be unsure, and makes my hair fall out faster – at least it seems so.

What’s causing such stress?


I have used WordPerfect as a word processing program for many years, and I’m pretty much devoted to it. It always does exactly what I want it to do, and has never let me down (more about that in a minute).  I’ve used MSWord from time to time, when I had to, and only until I could get back to my more civilized software. I don’t like Word. It’s clunky, and just doesn’t do all the wonderful things that WP will do easily. For instance, in Word, when I begin a new line, the program automatically makes the first letter a capital, whether I want it or not. I have to go back purposely and change it to a lower case letter. I write poetry, and not every line is a sentence. Some lines are just phrases, continuations of the previous line. WP won’t make the first letter a capital unless there is a period at the end of the line before it.

Also, WP will create a PDF file from the doc I’ve written, with very little work on my part. And it’s a genuine PDF.

However, I had a problem with my computer not too long ago, and it only had Word installed on it at the factory. I didn’t have the WP disc to upload it onto the computer after the repairs were completed, so I was forced to use Word for a while. Now I  have WP again. Just in time. (Or so I thought.)

I had created a manuscript in PDF format for the book Witch Daze, and uploaded it to my publisher. Then I ordered a proof copy of the book. When the proof arrived, I noticed a couple of rather small errata that really needed attention. I just couldn’t let them stand. I had to wait for the arrival of WordPerfect before I even attempted to make my corrections, because I had to make the corrections to the original document, as it was before I used it to create the PDF document. If I entered that WP document with Word, most of the punctuation would be either missing or exchanged for a series of symbols. Then I would have to start at the beginning of the 375-page document and lo0k for every piece of punctuation, especially the apostrophes, to fix the mess that Word had created. So I waited.

When I finally had WP securely installed, I opened the old document, only to find that I had failed to save it in it’s finished condition before I created the PDF! Most of the formatting was skewed. And some of the pages were so messed up, they would only permit one line of text at the top of the page, and one line at the bottom of the page. Nothing I did repaired that problem.

Now I’m beginning to think I should have gone into the document with Word anyway, no matter how much more work it would have meant. At least by now, I’d have had all the problems repaired. Maybe.

As it is, I’m going to have to re-align the entire document, re-configure all the formatting, remove the offending two-line pages to replace them (hopefully) with fully-restored pages, and then I can begin to make the corrections I wanted to make all along.

That’s the plan.

Unless I can get a copy of Adobe, which might allow me to edit the PDF file directly. It’s an expensive program, and I’d hate to spend that kind of money on something that isn’t guaranteed to solve my problem. But I have to think positively. At least I’d have the original producer of all PDF formatting, and it would stand me in good stead in the future.

In the meantime, Witch Daze is off the market for the time being. I have no idea how much longer this will take, but IMHO it has already taken more time than I ever thought it would, and more than I wanted to spend editing!


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