Frustrated and anxious about ML business

October 24, 2012

So – it’s just over a week until Nanowrimo starts…

As I’ve mentioned, I signed up to be an ML for Hamilton this year. My Co-ML and I met to start discussing plans back in September, but – well, I haven’t been hugely ‘on the ball’ and proactive about getting all the little details organized, and as a result we’re both scrambling a bit to get the Kick-Off party organized in time.

I was supposed to meet Co-ML yesterday evening, actually, for a pre-write-in, but the location got switched several times at the last minute and the agreed-on coffee shop turned out to not be open past 6 on Tuesdays – whoops! And each of us tried alternate venues in a different order missed each other, and went home.

But we connected over the phone, and settled on a time for the Kick-off, an ideal venue, and a back-up venue. I called the #1 pick venue yesterday evening; the same local coffee shop where we held our MLs planning meeting. They have a gallery room that can be reserved for parties, which sounds really good. The woman who answered the phone took down my details and assured me that her manager would call back today to confirm.

But the phone, it hasn’t rung all day. 😦 I tried calling them again at quarter after four – a machine picked up, and I left my information again. Tried one more time just a few minutes ago. Same machine, I hung up on it this time.

I’m trying not to get too anxious. This coffee shop should work out, I’ve made every reasonable effort, and if not, the backup venue, (a restaurant that’s very popular with the Wrimos in our region,) should be happy to take a reservation for us on Sunday afternoon on relatively short notice. 🙂

I’m excited about being a Nanowrimo ML for the first time. Shouldn’t let the pressure get to me.

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The mysteries of Kindle debug mode

December 21, 2011

I’ve had my second-generation Kindle for coming on two years now, and even though it’s been a frustrating device sometimes, (especially since Canadian Kindle owners get the short end of the stick in numerous ways compared to Americans,) I’m glad I got it overall. A few days ago I converted a few chapters that a fellow Toronto area writer sent me many months ago into Kindle format, vowing that I’d get her my feedback before the year was out. I started reading on the bus yesterday, and figured out how to make annotations as I read.

Hello, frustration, I was wondering when I’d meet you again! There was an oddly unpredictable lag when clicking the ‘Save Note’ option – anywhere from a few seconds to at least two minutes before I could turn the page – or even read from the bottom of the page, where the annotation is entered.

At first I was wondering whether this was because of the way I’d used the old Mobipocket Desktop program to convert the word file into a format that Kindle could read – it wasn’t even quite the usual .mobi format. But trying annotations in a few other books resulted in the same lag, and I found a discussion thread on an e-reader forum talking about a very similar lag on Kindle 3. Apparently, it has something to do with the ‘clippings’ file that Kindle saves annotations in, and the background indexing process.

There was a solution posted – a debug script that you could type into the search box on the Kindle home screen, which would disable indexing until the Kindle was restarted. While indexing was off, apparently annotations could be entered quickly, which seemed to be a reasonable tradeoff for not updating the search indexes – and you can restart the Kindle, let it index overnight, and then disable the indexes again.

The script given was for Kindle 3, but I decided to give it a try and see how it worked, because I couldn’t find a similar method for disabling indexes on Kindle 2.

;debugOn

No real sign yet of whether it was working or not, as expected.

~help

The Kindle churned and thought about this for several seconds before bringing me back to the home screen, instead of showing me a list of debug commands. No joy. Hmm…

This time, I searched for ‘debug mode Kindle 2’ – and found something useful! It was a page with general information on debug in Kindle 2 versus 3, with the tip that in Kindle 3, you use the ~ tilde where Kindle 2 has the ` backquote.

Aha!

`help

This provided the list of debug commands. So I continued with:

`disableIndexing
;debugOff

And tested entering a new annotation – less than a second’s lag time. I haven’t tested it under real reading conditions yet, but I’m hopeful.


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