Friday, September 24, 2010


The first is Mac Troubleshooting. My PC friends can skip down to the bottom, but anyone having problems with their Mac may want to consider my words: Never panic. The solution is a calm breath away.


About a month ago, Mac flashed two errors every time I opened Word warning me that my custom dictionaries were no longer available. I'm a writer. Having no dictionaries is like taking away my pen. I searched online, met a lot of frustrated Mac users, but found no solution. Not good. I reinstalled Office:mac, nada.

Then two weeks ago, I noticed my desktop wallpaper no longer worked and I was left with the Mac default desktop. That was disturbing because I have so many important family and location pics destined to be wallpaper. Beautiful sunsets, upside down kitty cats, snoring family members, hockey outside our front window, a 29 crib hand. Important stuff.

I took a close look at iPhoto and decided it was time to clean house. I moved my 3000+ photos to Dropbox. Took 3 days. Then I ran Repair Disk Permissions. That worked for about a minute. Then I opened Terminal and typed killall Dock. A pic appeared on my second monitor. Yay! The next morning it was gone.

I scanned all the Mac forums for answers. I tried Onyx, App-cleaner, reinstalling the start up disc, and finally creating a new account. Of course, nobody told me I had to change all the permission options for each individual folder. I did this by right-clicking on the folder, scrolling down to Get Info. At the bottom of the new window, there's a Sharing and Permission:. That's where I added the new account name and changed the privilege from No Access or Read Only to Read and Write.

That all sounds so pro-techie that you'd think it worked, eh?


While all I was able to share all my folders, many of them had nothing inside. It was a hodgepodge of chaotic chaos. And I could feel my blood pressure rising. I deleted the new account and went back to no wallpaper rotation. Only to discover that I was now unable to change anything in Mail. Every time I tried to fix it so I had Yahoo coming in along with Hotmail and Gmail, I would receive an error showing that nothing was saved because I didn't have permission. I'm the only one using this machine. But I did the ole "Repair Disk Permission" and it worked until I logged off at night. I had to repeat the process every morning.

That's when I noticed that my Dock was acting strange. Nothing stayed put. The settings were gone and I couldn't return to factory default. And I had three ? marks where icons should have been.

Anyway, to make a long story short, I woke up one morning and, despite a terrible head cold, realized the answer was among all this muck. All my important emails were still online at their prospective sites. My photos were already safe and sound in Dropbox. All I had to do was upload the rest: my important docs, files, and mss. I then created a new account called Spare User. I reinstalled Office:mac, did one more Repair Disk Permission. When I was sure everything was back to normal, all my bookmarks, docs, and downloads, I renamed it, deleted my own account, and voila: everything is as it should be. (Saving the old account is also an option)

I had a corrupt account, and now it's gone.

So, if things aren't quite the way they should be, don't despair. Or kick your Mac. Just create a new persona.

Now the other thing:

So many good blogs -- so little time. Lucky for me though, I belong to several great lists where alerts are sent out when something is too important to pass up. That's the case with Barbara Baig's guest blog on Writer Beware titled: How Deliberate Practice Can Make You an Excellent Writer. Barbara's post definitely got my creative juices flowing. I'll leave you to check it out.

I'm off to practice vivid and musical settings.


  1. Hi Joylene,
    Sorry, I had to skip down from the top part of this posting. Something about having problems with a 'Mac'. Well, I know being in England, always a good idea to have a decent raincoat. That was lousy. I do apologise.
    Now then, must go and check out'How Deliberate Practice Can Make You an Excellent Writer'. Maybe I need some deliberate practice.
    Have a peaceful and positive weekend, Joylene.
    Kind wishes, Gary

  2. Having problems with a Mac isn't something you hear about too often. Something to do with Macs being so terrific, I suspect. Have a wonderful weekend, Gary. Stay safe.

  3. Yup, Macs are terrific, but they're still machines and bad things sometimes happen to good machines. I haven't had many serious problems with mine, but even once is too often, so I sympathize with your frustrations. Glad to hear you're up and running properly again.

    I use Google Reader to keep track of my favourite blogs but some days there are most posts than I have time for. I haven't made it to the Writer Beware site yet today but will check out Barbara Baig's post in the morning. It sounds like a good one. :)

  4. Aghhh... that would be "more" posts than I have time for. I should proofread my comments before submitting them rather than afterwards!

  5. I know exactly how you feel, Carol. That's why I only mention those I think are important or more so than most. This one sounds original.

  6. How very frustrating, and good advice about taking that deep breath. I have to do that not only for this desktop, but for the husband sitting at the desk near mine, he has the laptop and turns to me, not having takent that breath, when computer things go wrong...

  7. Carole, I'm smiling because I can totally relate. I work on the laptop when DH is playing Bubbleshooter. If the Mac's mouse isn't just right on, DH threats to throw it out the front window or at the cat. LOL. His patience wears thin when it comes to games. You'd think he'd quit. Oh, no.


Thank you for visiting my blog. Please come in and sit for while. We will talk about writing. We will share our dreams. Then I will serve tea and cookies. Home made and Gluten Free.