Pencil marks

What would you do if this were your assignment?  Would you cry?  Would you turn it over to see the next page?

Maybe not, but I did.  I did, and I was pleasantly surprised to see what it said.

The comments say, “Way to go!” That’s right, Steve Vogelsang used an exclamation point.  “Your best work so far!”  Twice!

If you look closer you will see most of the editing notes are check marks – good job – or very good and really good. 

Regardless of what most of the comments say, it’s daunting to see all that pencil on 438-word story.  The fact of the matter is, though, that as a writer, a professional one to boot, there will always be small changes or big changes or comments that an editor will make to help IMPROVE a writer’s abilities.

As a writer learning that someone will always have something to say about your work or know how to say it better is a hard pill to swallow.  But it’s best to choke it down because an outsider’s opinion can sometimes lead to amazing ideas. 


I’m officially a videographer this week.  Well sort of.  For the first time this week, Nicki and I edited a short silent film we shot last week for continuity.  It was totally amazing to put two different images of the same action together and have it tell a story.  I don’t know if any of you reading this blog has done this, but it is a totally amazing feeling to know that you can tell a story with film.

(I wanted to include the silent film here, but it's taking forever and this blog is due at 6.)

Another notch on the old videographer’s belt is recording sound.  Until today I had NEVER recorded sound.  Before last week I didn't even fully comprehend just how important and difficult sound is.  In first year, I filmed and edited a montage but that was just one music track and the continuity assignment was silent.  This morning Nicki, Glenda and I finally took out the sound equipment to record a phone call.  I held the boom mic over Nicki's head as she played  her part, and watched as the audio levels peaked up and down - it's really important.  Next week involves taking all we learnt, shot composition, editing for continuity and sound, and put it all together to create a piece that is officially a video.  

I'm really excited to see how it all LOOKS and SOUNDS.  If you had asked me two years ago if I ever saw myself doing or even liking this I don't if I would have said yes.  This last year has opened my eyes to so many different things I could never have imagined.  


What's the U about?

“Dad, why do we use U in words like colour and neighbour?”

“I don’t know that’s just what we do.  It’s kind of silly actually.”

That’s my dad, spoken like a true Canadian with British heritage – we have no freaking clue.

When you spell words like colour, flavour, honour there is always that little red swiggly line from your old pal spell check letting you know that word is spelt wrong, and if you’re like me you don’t change it.  But do you know why?  Maybe it’s something in our subconscious telling us that we, Canadians, spell these words with a U just to be different.

After a little research, I found that there is no earth shattering reason why we do this.  The British do it this way so we do it this way.  The website I found hints that Americans changed the language as a way of breaking free from the British – big shocker there.  Canadians, on the other hand, continue to use the British spelling as a way of preserving a sense of heritage and tradition.

U isn’t the only thing Americans changed in the English language.  Here are some others that even Canadians adopted:




Why do you say paper jam when there is no paper jam?

My printer is giving me a headache – a huge freaking headache.  It keeps saying paper jam when there is no paper jam, or at least is there is no reason why there should be a paper jam.  The paper is just sitting there nice and neat until it goes in the printer, and before it can even get half way done it jams.  UGH, not again.  Freaking paper jam.
The first time I notice how crappy this printer is was the other day when I had to print something out for school.  I hit print and then I got an error message, “communication error.”  Ok, let’s try this again.  Print… “Communication error.”  Why are you doing this to me, just print!  Again and again I tried for about an hour.  Press print then hold the paper as it feeds into the printer.  “Communication error.” Shit.  Then I tried to change the black ink cartage.  “Communication error.”  Ok, ok, let’s try changing the colour cartage too.  “Communication error.”

After that I gave up.  This is absolutely ridiculous.  I’ll just print it out at school.

The day after fighting with the printer for over an hour, I decided just for fun that I would try to print something.  Like a bad horror movie when the victim runs upstairs instead of running outside, and all the audience can do is yell, “don’t go upstairs – run outside,” the printer decided to work.  That stupid, freaking thing worked – the first time.
Damn you printer!  I’ll show you.  I’ll go buy a new one and then take you out to the field behind my house and smash you to pieces just like they did on Office Space.  Just wait, you’ll get your headache.


Edit me life why don't ya

On Facebook people are always posting what they think, what they’re up to and just any random thought that comes to mind. Sometimes everything in the sentence is grammatically correct and sometimes it’s not.

I specifically remember a couple of posts I made this summer while tired or aggravated that may not have been up to the editing standards of my instructors at RRC. But whatever, I didn’t think I was going to get a hard time from anyone, because after all it’s a social networking site and not everyone is perfect all the time. I mean I wouldn’t post some of the comments or pictures a lot of people put up there - I’m not judging - why does someone feel the need to judge me?

I don’t remember what I said, but there was an error, not a huge error but an error nonetheless. A few people, who are only Facebook friends, made comments like, “Aren’t you in a writing program or something?” or corrected my mistake for me. I was so annoyed that I wrote a grammatically correct post with no spelling errors about how I’m human, and as long as I’m not handing in a project to an instructor or employer it isn’t the end of the world. We all make mistakes sometimes, but has Facebook and Twitter given people the power to make editing comments regardless of the medium?


Epicurious, you bet yah!

Apps are everywhere.  Apps can pretty much do anything you want, need and anything you can and can’t think of.  As a Blackberry user, I found out with a tinge of sadness today that I’m missing out on some apps.  When I search apps for my phone I don’t get the enormous array of possibilities that are available on iTunes for iPods and iPhones and iPads – I’m jealous.


I found an awesome app.  It’s called Epi.  It’s a free app from Epicurious.com, an online food magazine, which pretty much entails every thing that deals with food and eating it.
The app allows you to search from over 28 thousand recipes from top chefs, popular cookbooks and leading restaurants.
          Identification principle

Epi answers the question “What’s in it for me?” by giving its users thousands of recipes at their fingertips.  People are busy.  Whether it’s a student swamped with schoolwork, a family busy running kids from play dates to piano lessons or a single guy planning a romantic dinner, Epi allows you to find recipes easily and create a list your of favorites so you can always find them.  No more hunching over cookbooks or searching the web, you can find recipes anywhere.
         Action principle

Epi not only helps users get recipes anywhere any time, it also makes preparing to cook easier with the shopping list feature.  By putting in what you’ve got in your fridge, Epi will find the best recipe for any occasion or diet.  If you do need something from the store, it creates a shopping list for you and checks off each item.  If you can’t make it to the store, you can send shopping lists via email, so if someone is out and about they can pick up whatever you need.
      Principle of Familiarity and Trust

Epicurious.com works together with familiar cooking magazines, like Bon Apétit and Gourmet magazine and use to have a cooking show on the Discovery Channel.  By using recipes from cookbooks, chefs and restaurants we are familiar with it gains the users trust  - we know it’ll be good.  iTunes says Epi has already had 1.6 million downloads and was voted Best Mobile Application in 2009 by the American Society of Magazine Editors.

            Clarity principle

Like I said earlier, I don’t have an iPod, that’s app compatible, iPhone or iPad so the only way I can really see the Epi app is to look at screen shots.  It looks to be organized into what type of meal you want to make for any diet.  Let’s say you want to make something with grilled meat.  All you have to do is click on “grilled meat” and recipes with pictures will pop up.  I love pictures because they always make my decision easier to make.
On top of making it easy to help you decided what to make, the shopping list function breaks down your list into sections, so when you are in the produce department you know what you need to get.

Now all I need is a 32G iPod. 


The REAL power of words

A single word can take on so many different meanings.  Take the word REAL, for example.  It can be used in many different ways. When you use the word REAL you usually intend it to mean one of the following:

1 actually existing as a thing or occurring in fact; not imagined or supposed
• used to emphasize the significance or seriousness of a situation or circumstance
Philosophy relating to something as it is, not merely as it may be described or distinguished.
2 (of a substance or thing) not imitation or artificial; genuine
true or actual
[ attrib. ] (of a person or thing) rightly so called; proper : he's my idea of a real man | Jamie is my only real friend.
3 [ attrib. ] informal complete; utter (used for emphasis) : the tour turned out to be a real disaster.
real 2 |rāˈäl| |reɪˈɑl| |riˈɑl| |reɪˈɑːl|
noun ( pl. reals or reis |rā sh; rās|)
the basic monetary unit of Brazil since 1994, equal to 100 centavos.
( pl. reales |rāˈäles|or reals) a former coin and monetary unit of various Spanish-speaking countries.
ORIGIN Portuguese and Spanish, literally ‘royal’ (adjective used as a noun).

Needless to say, words can be confusing, fantastic and multi-functional. 
Editors like to play with the meaning of words.   They take familiar words and use them in many different ways to make us think.

Five minutes away from my house is a little market gardener.  Like all market gardeners, they sell mostly local produce.  This local farmer, however, loves to advertise his home-grown goodness by calling it “REAL” -  “REAL” corn, “REAL potatoes and “REAL” blueberries. 

These signs annoy and intrigue me.  Why would anyone call local produce “REAL” ______?  What ever happened to using good old words, like local, farm fresh, homegrown?  I mean “REAL”, really?  Oh course, it’s real.  I can feel it, see it and, most importantly, taste it.
Whoever chose this slogan thought of a way to get my attention and to get me thinking about their product with one word. This is the power of words.  They can get us thinking and feeling about anything. 

As an editor, it’s important to attract your audience with interesting words and visuals that stops them in their tracks.  With all the competition in the market, it’s important to use whatever means you have to stick in the audience’s mind, and words can have a huge impact on getting your audience's attentions.


New blog, new look

When I decided this morning to write my blog I knew I was going to move away from just writing about health and wellness to writing about things in my everyday life. I had no idea, however, that my blog would become entirely new, minus a URL change, this morning at 7:49.

First, logging in was a bit of a challenge. As you know, I have not blogged since school ended in May. So, needless to say I couldn't remember my password, which is a common occurrence - I forgot my twitter password too.

Second, the minute I finally logged on new templates popped up. I tried them all out to see which one would be a nice fit for this "new" blog. I decided to pick the one with the flying birds, because I though it fit in nicely with everything that is going on in my life and my new beginning after school this year.

This year is my fifth and final year of university/college, and I always want to look back on this year to remember the trials and tribulations I went through. This blog will be like a journal as I deal with CreComm, work, family, boyfriends, friends and everything else in between.

Stay tuned...