At the beginning of my writing career, I used to send a copy of my published ‘middle ’in the popular newspaper to a few of my close relatives by e mail. I used to make sure that the original title was retained (not the one given by the editor) and that all the edited portions were restored. I strongly felt that too stringent an editing (as demanded by the space available) would take away from the continuity of the thought process. Of course, not knowing about the ‘attachment’ technique, my blog would reach them in truncated versions. The local crowd however preferred to read it straight from the newspaper for its better presentation.
Next, I started writing for e magazines but continued sending the original versions by e mail to a bigger circle. Some of the computer savvy readers preferred to read them directly from the e magazine, again for a better presentation.
Then came the stage where the e magazine made every article accessible separately by providing a ‘link’. With attractive pictures accompanying the articles, I thought it would be highly e- glamorous to shoot off the ‘link’ to my readers (the circle was even more wide now) than my drab e-mail. But that’s where my problem started. I being more computer savvy of the two, I could expect no technical help from my counterpart.
Earlier, for any ‘copy’ and ‘paste’ job, I would open the ‘edit’, highlight the required matter, click on ‘copy ’option, go to the next site and click on the ‘paste’ in the ‘edit’. I had never encountered any problem in the process. But now, when I clicked, ‘copy’ and try to highlight my ‘link’, the ‘copy’ would disappear. Both ‘copy’ and highlighting would never come on together. This went on for quite sometime.
So, I started copying the ‘link’ laboriously and sending them to my readers. First, I found the links full of symbols like % and letters, almost like the expressions of profanity in Tintincomics. When I wrote to my editor, she replied that she did not see any percentage symbols on my link. Then one smart young friend of thecompu-generation enlightened me that I was accessing the article through Face book which gives a long link , but that I should access it directly .But the links were still so long that with the slightest change in copying, say, in date or hyphen, the computer would refuse to accept it. It was highly embarrassing to see my readers confronted with insulting remarks by the website, like:
OOOPS, WHERE DID YOU GET SUCH A LINK?
SERVER CANNOT LOCATE WHAT YOU ARE LOOKING FOR.
It would even try to cajole the customer: YOU ARE LOOKING FOR SOMETHING THAT IS NOT HERE. YOU CAN ALWAYS TRY DOING A ‘SEARCH’ OR BROWSING THROUGH ‘ARCHIVES’. DON’T LOSE YOUR HOPE YET.
When my readers sent such feedback, I had to assure them that there was nothing wrong with their IQs but that the technical glitch and the rebuke were solely due to my ignorance. I even requested my editor to cut down the length of the ‘link’ but to no avail. The editor could not comprehend my problem. With no free expert technical help (read KIDS) at hand, it was totally a trial and error situation for me. I tried and tried again like the legendary King Bruce. Finally I hit upon the solution in…, where else but the bathroom! ‘Eureka’ I said running out, minimally clad, and switched on the computer. I went to the e-mag site, right clicked the ‘link’. Hey, presto! A lovely menu unfurled on my right, where the command ‘copy’ did not play ‘Hide and Seek’ with my ‘link’.
In sheer triumph I copied and pasted the ‘link’ and e mailed my blog to the now BIG circle of friends and relatives with a click (right) of the mouse! .