Week seven

Week seven of social distancing and we’re settling into a routine. The routine is basically get up, shower, breakfast (porridge or toast, depending on how long we slept in), work, cook dinner, read a book, go to bed. If we get up early enough there’s a pre-breakfast walk around the block, but it’s too dark after work to go walking.

It’s funny how some habits, like the above, are easy to form and others, like exercising, are hard.

Our heating bill will be gigantic this winter. The heater is on all the time.

How are you going?

Microsoft finally decided that two spaces after a sentence was an error. Or at least, it did for a week or two but now my Word has stopped putting little error marks at the end of every sentence. I’m not sure how, or what, but it was there, and then it wasn’t.

I know one space is the norm nowadays, but I started learning to type on a typewriter back when two spaces were necessary to set the sentences apart from each other. Nowadays, modern word processors space the sentences automatically. I’m not fussed which I use, as there is always search and replace. 

I didn’t realise the number of characters after a period was something you could set in Word. (If you ever need to do this: File > Options > Proofing > Writing style Grammar settings button > Punctuation conventions.)

Another grammatical thing that has changed since I learned it (at school) is that here in Australia the norm for talking marks in novels is now single quotes. ‘Which can lead to some weird punctuation,’ she says, ‘because you’ll often have contractions in the sentence as well.’

I prefer to use double quotes for talking. Partly because that’s still the US norm and we write for US markets. If I have to I can always search and replace on the quotes in the last edit. Believe me, it’s so much easier to replace double quotes with single ones, than it is to do it the other way around, because of the aforesaid contractions.

Anyway, back to the Microsoft one space/two spaces after the sentence. The error disappeared after a couple of weeks so I don’t know if it was reset or something. I’m happy it’s gone, and I know how to reset it now, so if they put it back, I’ll know what to do.

By the way Microsoft, I love Word dearly, but I’m not happy about you deleting all my keyboard shortcuts. Not just on the main PC, but also on the laptop and on the work computer. It took a lot of work to put them back.

Ah, well. Software upgrades. Don’t we love them.

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