So I’m Supposed To Post Today….

29 Jun

…and I almost forgot, lol.

I got an email this morning telling me, “Hey, we can’t award your diploma yet because you haven’t met the requirements–surprise!”

WTH are you people talking about???  I went over my req’s forwards and backwards with my advisor and you have my transcripts, so what’s the deal?

I think this may be another case of “we changed the course req’s again at the last minute without telling you,” which has happened before.  And the fact that I’ve been enrolled in three different colleges/universities and have transfer credits out the wazoo doesn’t help; it only complicates things.  My usual advisor is out-of-town, so I had to talk to a general advisor.  Hopefully she can tell what’s what and we can get this ironed out.

Way to start off the day: stressed and mildly depressed.

But I’m not going to sully this blogging experience anymore.  I do have something that’s potentially useful to some that I can share today.

Life in the Early 1900s

I was editing this scene yesterday where my protagonist is having a phone conversation, and I realized that I was making some general assumptions about the way telephones worked in the late 1930s, which is the era I’m deriving a lot of my worldbuilding inspiration from (both American and European).  I just wanted to double-check myself (and ended up spending way more time than I needed to looking into 1930s telephones in general).

Rare Vintage Western Electric 202 Phone. Posted by user laushustell on Ebay.

Anyhow, I came across a really neat site called 1900s.org.uk where a woman by the name of Pat Cryer shares her mother’s recollections of life in London during the early 1900s.  She mentions so many little details that I feel just really bring that city to life while reading about it on the page.  I was quite ecstatic when I discovered this, haha, because I’ve never been able to find this kind of information before.  Additionally, I found another site with vintage clips and footage called archive.org.

Since I’m a very curious little monkey and just couldn’t resist, I wanted to compare this to life in America, as well, so I got a book called (and it’s a long title): Daily Life in the United States, 1920-1940: How Americans Lived Through the Roaring Twenties and the Great Depression.  Anyway, I just bought it yesterday with my free two-day shipping through Amazon, so it should be here by tomorrow.  (Yeah, I could have it now if I were an e-book reader, though I’ve discovered there are certain things I just must have–with actual physical pages.  I like to highlight and underline and make copies and notes or whatever, basically just use my hands and have a direct connection to whatever I’m engaging in.  It just isn’t the same on the computer, for some reason.  I guess it’s just a tactile/kinesthetic learning thing–which makes sitting down for hours on end to write/edit a novel kind of challenging for me, actually.)

That’s the thing about doing research: there are different levels you can go into.  Some things I’ve researched more than others in my story, and others I kind of take what I need/want and just say “what the hey!” to the rest.  I guess at the end of the day it simply comes down to whether I’m satisfied with what I’ve written.  If I see a way to improve something, I’m going to improve it or else it’ll bug me till Kingdom come.  (Though, admittedly, seeing room for improvement and nitpicking are two different things…)

So yes, maybe this is all a bit OC of me, considering I’m writing secondary world fantasy, but I do care about whether there were dial and ring tones on telephones in the late 1930s and whether speaking to an operator was always necessary to place a call. (And maybe that kind of thinking is why I’ll never finish this book!)

J/K.  I will.  I’m going to.  You’ll see.

[Quick update: I just got a call from the advisor, and they totally just fixed my problem–yay!  Diploma’s on the way, at last.]

So anyway, I wonder what you folks have been up to recently?

Making headway on your projects?  Encountering any speed bumps?  And bonus, if you’re bold enough: do you think I am maybe just a little bit crazy?  (Or normal–for a writer, anyway.  I’ll take that, too.)

Yesterday I got pretty distracted, to be honest, so today I plan to do better.  (If there’s one downside to having to type up and edit your manuscript on a laptop with Wi-Fi access, it’s that the Internet is always riiiiiight by your side… But oh!  Aren’t the discoveries wonderful? ;))

P.S.: the random patch of light grey text at the beginning is…yeah, not intentional.

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8 Responses to “So I’m Supposed To Post Today….”

  1. Stephen A. Watkins June 29, 2011 at 1:01 PM #

    So… what’s the answer? Was there a ring-tone in the 30’s or not? Did you have to speak to an operator, or could you dial direct?

    You sure can string us along, can’t you? With your posing of questions and not answering them…

    Like

    • Tiyana June 29, 2011 at 2:01 PM #

      Ha! How mean of me. 😛

      Well, here’s what I’ve been able to gather: There *were* both dial and ring tones on phones (at least the ones I’ve been looking at), and it wasn’t necessary to speak to the operator unless: (1) you needed assistance finding a specific number (perhaps one that wasn’t in your directory), (2) you needed to make a long-distance call, or (3) if something just went wrong with the call.

      Couldn’t say if this is true for all phones at the time, though, in regions that could handle lots of calls being made. Just the ones I’ve been looking at–mostly rotary phones used in highly urban settings. And I’m still unsure about the differences between phones used in England vs. here in the U.S. at that time, but I’m not going to go there. I’m just going to stick with a model I’m familiar with and use that as a guide, lol.

      Like

  2. T. S. Bazelli June 29, 2011 at 1:09 PM #

    OH man! The same thing happened to me when I applied for graduation! I’d gone over the requirements with an adviser, but it turns out we missed something, and I had to take one last class *sigh*

    Also ditto on Stephen’s question! I want to know

    I’m researching this week and taking care of some stuff that I’ve put aside for months 😉 Nice to cross some things off the ancient to-do list finally.

    Like

    • Tiyana June 29, 2011 at 2:08 PM #

      Oh man! That sounds like what happened to one of my friends, except she had to take a whole extra semester full of classes. 😦

      Mighty nice feeling to check stuff off a list! (Somehow, though, my list doesn’t seem to be getting any shorter, lol.)

      Like

  3. Anthony Lee Collins July 3, 2011 at 6:56 AM #

    Glad your diploma thing worked out.

    Some things to be aware of about phones in the 1930s (no, I’m not that old, but I’ve read a lot of books set in the early part of the 20th century,and I’m extrapolating back from the early 1960s):

    Many people didn’t have one. Probably most people didn’t have one in the 1930s. Not only were people used to living without them, but it was the Depression.

    I believe all calls were charged by the minute, so calls were short. Long distance was expensive.

    There were no phone answering services or machines (trivia: the first phone answering machine shown in a movie was in Kiss Me Deadly and it was huge and — IIRC — mounted in the wall, with a reel-to-reel tape deck). If you called somebody and they weren’t there, it rang and rang until you gave up.

    All telephones were the property of the telephone company (a total monopoly in those days in he U.S.). To get an extension phone, you had to pay.

    From Wikipedia: “Prior to World War II in the United States, party lines were the primary way residential subscribers acquired local phone service.”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Party_line_(telephony)

    Like

    • Tiyana July 3, 2011 at 9:58 AM #

      Hey, Anthony. Thanks for sharing! Good things to keep in mind.

      About the monopoly, I noticed how a lot of the (American) phones I was looking at seemed to all be made by Western Electric. I guess the monopoly factor had something to do with it!

      Like

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