Not much to report these days, as my thesis journey has come to an end. No more editing, and the website is up and running. However, I’m still looking into making a book. I’ve been watching more bookbinding tutorials and even put together a sample book, and I’m happy with the way it looks. I ordered all the materials I need from Paper Source and Etsy, and hopefully they will come in by early next week, so I can get started on the real thing as soon as possible.
I know the next two weeks will be very busy and stressful for those of you who are still working. I’m sending out encouraging vibes and wishing you luck as you near the finish line.
I’m almost scared to say it, but I think I’m done. I can’t think of anything else I need to write. I have enough stories and my introduction is complete. I spent most of last week trying to figure out how to create a website for my thesis project and it went pretty smoothly. What gave me the most trouble was the navigation bar and putting a copyright on every page of my stories. After messing around with the footer for an entire day (yes, a whole day!), I finally gave up and had my son put the copyright in. It literally took him five minutes. I am so grateful for all his help and support, and for not laughing at me, at least not in my face.
I hope my children read my stories someday. They still haven’t shown any interest yet, but they are busy with school and their new jobs. I’m sure they’ll get around to it, and when they do, I hope they read it slowly and really reflect on what kind of man their great grandfather was and how much he did for his family. Self-sacrifice does not seem to be prevalent in this day and age, at least not from what I have observed. I hope my stories transport my kids and all other readers to a much different time and place.
The only thing left to do is put this thesis in book form. I know nothing about self-publishing, and I don’t have nearly enough material for a book, but I am big on arts and crafts and have been watching quite a few bookbinding tutorials on YouTube. It seems doable to create a little book for this thesis project. If I get started right away, I might have one completed within a few weeks. So, I will work on getting all the supplies together and will have my daughter Rachel look into software for bookbinding. She will be in charge of the layout and printing out the pages. I will do the fun part of sewing the pages together. Wish me luck!
Last week I heard “Saturday in the Park” by Chicago on my favorite radio station, 70s on 7 Sirius. It brought back so many memories of sunny Saturday afternoons with my grandfather in Central Park, and just like that, I had a new story. When I went back and reviewed the other five, I kept wondering how I could have left out a story about Central Park. What was I thinking? I had the same revelation a month ago when I realized I hadn’t written about Grampa’s love of cooking. How could I possibly write about him and not include such important details?
I now have six stories—a robust collection! I’m so excited!
What’s more, I was able to write the entire story in less than three days because the memories were so vivid. Honestly, once I get an idea in my head it doesn’t take long to get it on paper. However, editing the piece could take weeks. I find that editing is the longest and most grueling part of writing. I thought I was completely done with my stories, when I came across tutorials for comma placement and dialogue tags. It got me started on another round of editing that lasted the entire weekend—and I’m still not sure I did it right. Oh well, I can’t fret about it forever. For now, it is what it is.
I’m moving on now so I can work on my website. It’s all set up, but not very eye-catching. I need to experiment with fonts and colors, but I’m nervous about messing up the format. Working with computers takes confidence, something I’m still working on. In addition, I have to figure out how to copyright my work. Dr. Zamora went through it in class, and I understood it when she was explaining it, but I forgot everything as soon as I walked out of the room. Getting old sucks!
But I’m in a good place and giving myself one more week to complete this project. It is so doable, and I can see the finish line.