The Noble Pen for May 17, 2018

Next Noble Pen Meeting

May 17th, 2018 at 7 pm

Scott’s Family Restaurant

1906 Blairs Ferry Rd NE, Cedar Rapids


We have room on the upcoming schedule for more submissions.  Let me know if you have material ready.


Ciuin has arranged with a bake shop in northern CR to have them display and sell books by Noble Pen authors.  Ask her for details.


The committee for the Nobel Prize in Literature will not be awarding one in 2018 because a scandal has led too many members to resign.  Interestingly, they cannot be replaced until they die and thus an impasse occurs.


Aime has identified how the Democracy story will end.

Ciuin wrote the trial, result of trial, and ending of her battle scene in Chessmaster but has a lot to do on the battle itself.

Nick has beta readers for some of his stories.


Some people advise all cliché phrases are to be “avoided like the plague.”  See Wikipedia discussion.  Writer’s Digest offers a short list of overused phrases.  Here’s a list of 681 clichéd phrases.

I’m not so sensitive to them as to ban their whole list, and feel an occasional one can serve a purpose.  I see nothing wrong with “benefit of the doubt,” for instance, and wouldn’t object to occasional use of “ace in the hole”, “all in a day’s work”, or “crash course.”  However, “drives me up the wall” tends to do so, I’ve seen pancakes that weren’t “flat as a pancake,” and I’ve never seen a real “loose cannon.”


Backups are vital.   Someday you will need one when you are least prepared. What is the state of your backups if you had a crash RIGHT NOW?

Some people consider it necessary to have at least three copies of any important work, such as on the working computer, on a flash drive, and on a cloud storage service like Dropbox (read about)(sign up with referral link instead for more free storage).  If you burn CDs or DVDs that can be another option.  You could substitute more flash drives for the cloud service.  A good scheme is to have two or more and rotate which one you update in case you overwrite a version you wanted.

I find it useful to make a copy of the project file now and then with the date inserted into the file name, as  MyBook2018_05_17.doc so that I can go back and look at prior versions (the cloud may only keep old versions for a limited time).

If you know how to use batch files or command lines, this line is handy, with appropriate drive letter and folder name in place of those shown:
xcopy c:\MyBook e:\MyBook\ /D /S /R /I /Y
It will copy any newer-dated or additional files and only those files, from that folder and its subfolders to the other drive.  If the folder has blanks in its name, you must enclose the name in double quotes.  Windows should have made it easy to do this kind of copy, but didn’t.

Upcoming Schedule

May 17
Uriah (revised submission)

May 24
Open slots

May 31
Open slots

Jun 7
Open slot

Jun 14
Open slots

Keep Writing,