New Toys

 Posted by at 12:18 am  Nick's Blog
Nov 242020

Yesterday my new toys arrived and I think I’m ready to enter a new phase in the world of recording my blog. The first item was the Blue Yeti Nano microphone, and that’s what we will talk abut in today’s blog.

Besides the Blue Yeti Nano microphone, I also got a Zoom H4n digital recorder that can also serve as a microphone. As I said before, it was highly recommended by both John Huggins, who used to produce the Living the RV Dream podcast with his wife Kathy, and Jim Guld from Geeks on Tour. There is a learning curve to both of these units, and I’ll try to see what I can do with the Yeti Nano first.

Okay, back to the Blue Yeti Nano microphone. First off, it’s really not blue, that’s just the name of the company. It comes in several colors, and this one is an attractive bronze color. The paperwork said it was just plug-and-play, and when I plugged it into one of my computer’s USB ports the drivers automatically loaded, and it was ready to go. It’s a nice-looking unit, and if it works half as well as it looks, I’ll be a happy camper. I am giving it it’s first trial by fire dictating today’s blog. Wish me luck.

Yesterday I finished going over and punching up last the chapters of Big Lake Hoarder, then I printed them out for Terry to edit and proofread. When she was done with that I made her corrections, and yesterday evening I sent it off to Judy Rinehimer, my second proofreader. Once I get those chapters back from Judy and make the corrections she suggests, it will go off to Roberta Jensen, my third and final proofreader. And when she’s finished, Terry and one of the other proofreaders will go over the whole manuscript one last time.

If those proofreaders’ names sound familiar to you, it’s probably because Judy, known to legions of RVers as “Cool Judy,” has been a fixture at RV rallies for years, teaching techno-related classes. Judy is no longer RVing but I know I can call on her anytime I get stuck doing something on the computer. And I have!

Roberta appears in the Big Lake series as the blind lawyer who is Deputy “Coop” Cooper’s love interest. And yes, the real Roberta Jensen is blind, and she has been a friend of mine from back in the mid-80s. She was also my lawyer before she retired. Roberta said she always wanted to be in a book, so I decided to put her in a whole series. That’s just one of the benefits of knowing an author. Of course, that can go another way, too. I have made more than one person from my past the villain in my books, and even killed off some of them. Yes, I really am that petty.

On another note, I find it interesting that even a pandemic doesn’t keep the scammers away. Maybe it actually encourages them because they’ve got a captive audience sitting at home waiting to hear from them. I’ve received three emails in the last few days from “friends,” all asking for my help. One was stuck in Rome, and her passport and money had been stolen, and she needed me to wire her $500 so she can come home. Another was in a hospital and needed some money to help cover the bill before they would release her. The third one said that she had forgotten it was her daughter’s birthday and that she was traveling out of the country, so she wanted me to go online and purchase something that there was a link to, and once I did, she would send the address to send it to. Hovering my mouse over the addresses, which were all my friends’ names, showed they were all from who knows where, but they were not from people I actually knew.

And then, of course, I got a call about my car’s warranty. I asked him which car, and the fellow, who didn’t speak English very well at all, told me the car I drive every day. I asked him if he meant my Corvette, or my Maserati, or my Lamborghini. He replied, “Yeah, that one.” I asked him which one because I still wasn’t sure if he meant my Volkswagen Beetle, or my Yugo, or my Chevrolet Vega. I said I was pretty sure it wasn’t my Ford Pinto because I don’t drive it that much, what with the exploding gas tank and all that. I guess he found me difficult to work with because he hung up on me. He didn’t even wish me Happy Holidays or anything. He’s that rude, and he wants my business? I don’t think so!

Having used the Yeti Nano to dictate today’s blog, I have had to redo the test paragraphs that Dragon asks you to do so it can adjust the sound settings twice, plus the initial set up test. It has missed words and phrases a few times, as well as punctuation. That’s about on a par with the headsets I have been using. I had Terry try to dictate into it and the results were the same. It does the job but it’s not all that impressive. If that’s the best I’m going to get and it doesn’t work out the way I need it to, I’ll use Amazon’s generous return policy and get rid of it.

Thought For The Day – I finally got eight hours of sound sleep. It took me three days, but whatever.

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  7 Responses to “New Toys”

  1. I think it is fascinating that one of your proofreaders is blind and would be curious what the process is for Roberta to read the chapters. Would you or she be willing to explain in more detail? I imagine that I am not the only person who likes to learn more about things with which we are not familiar. Thank you ?

  2. Barbara, Roberta uses a software program for the blind that “reads” print documents to her, including punctuation. She is brilliant to start with and very good about noticing things like misplaced quotation marks (something I do often in dictating to Dragon) or missing words. When we first became friends she was in law school and I would call her and ask if she was busy and she would say she was reading. It took me a while to get used to that.

  3. Roberta Jensen is one of your proof readers and she is blind. Do you send her a verbal copy to proof read or a Braille copy or a written copy that some one reads to her? The answer will be interesting.

  4. Thanks for the write-up, Nick. You did a pretty good job of describing it. I’m available if any other writer needs an editor.

  5. As I posted in reply to Barbara, Roberta uses a software program for the blind that “reads” print documents to her, including punctuation.

  6. Thank you to both Nick and Roberta for your answers. It sounds like the real Roberta is as amazing (or more so) as the character based on her.

  7. She is, Barbara. It has been an honor to call her my friend all these many years.

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