My book editing is progressing well. I have found someone to design a cover. Pat is checking things for factual accuracy. She has also made several useful suggestions. The search for tired metaphors goes on. It is frightening to find so many in one’s work. Clichés, trite phases and worn out figures of speech just slip in. Ugh! I am confident that I shall be able to publish by my self-imposed deadline.

Before computers arrived, I wrote everything in longhand and typed it out as necessary. Once I began to use word processors, I found that I could compose simple stuff but anything complicated still required pen and paper. Gradually, I learned to write reasonably well directly through the keyboard. I imagine that I opened up new neural pathways. Foolishly, I never mastered touch typing and have always to comb through my stuff for typos. Recently, I have tried using sophisticated and expensive voice recognition software. It works but the effusiions that emerge read as they have been composed by a pox doctor’s clerk: turgid, stuffy, pompous and cliché ridden. I suppose that yet new neural pathways have to be developed. Just a few weeks short of my eightieth birthday, I am not confident that will be possible. So, now I have returned to paper and pencil. Once I am happy with what I have written, I dictate it to the computer. I have gone round in a complete circle. Progress?

I heard recently that the Catholic Church is is convening a synod next month to discuss the family in today’s world. The attendees will be clerks in holy orders, all of whom will be male and celibate. Not one woman has been asked along although some of the laity have suggested that Mary McAleese and Christina Kineally, former politicians, devout Catholics and students of theology have offered to attend. A very skewed idea about contemporary families will result from the deliberations of the black clad gents. Would a conference about controlling the present Ebola virus outbreak, to which only orthopaedic surgeons and not a single virologist were invited, be considered ideal?  

Latest polemic: Demography and Europe

David Amies


Friday September 12th, 2014