Weird Bastard Dashes

Today before I even got out of bed I was worrying that I would not be able to solve my technical difficulty. And guess what? I was right. But I also had a back up plan so that I could get some writing done today and push through that irritating problem.

Thinking about the last scene I revised before the computer/program issue reared its ugly head, I realized I needed to add a couple more things to the scene for flow. They were simple things, but the scene didn’t have good logic without them. So I worked on that today, lacing those two things through the scene. Then I tackled the technical difficulty. I’d already tried a bunch of stuff on my own (mostly backspace and delete) to no avail. So I went to W2007FD and used the contents and index to find pages that might help me figure this out. Nothing worked, and nothing really described the problem I’m having. So, I’m thinking it’s a function of my machine, not the program.

I do not have a Dummy book for my laptop. There’s an online manual that I have tried to use–it’s not at all friendly. For example, it doesn’t even explain my function keys, which work way differently than my last computer, and sometimes even differently that W2007FD says function keys should work. So I expect no help from that online manual. I have a feeling it was written by a Russian and sent to Pakistan for revision. I suspect a conspiracy.

Here’s what happened, (and if you know how to fix it, please tell me in the comments, and thank you in advance). If you’re a writer you know about white space. White space separates scenes. Sometimes instead of white space, you’ll see an asterisk or a character. I like asterisks and have always used them to separate my scenes. But with this laptop if you center more than two asterisks (I like three for some reason, which is how I got into this mess) up comes a line of dashes all across the page. This I don’t like. And I cannot get rid of it! Nothing works!

Anyway, next step for me is to ask Al. And until he figures it out, I am just going to push forward with my story and ignore those weird bastard dashes.


  1. I didn’t learn how to fix this in my computer class – the problem didn’t come up. I’m so glad John knew how to fix it! I have made a note for future reference. I have a feeling other problems can be fixed this way, too.


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