Friday, 22 April 2016
Chalk, pencil, pen and pixel.
How does one go about writing a draft of the Bible? With a variety of implements!
First the Kope translation team works on a draft together, writing ideas on individual pieces of paper, sharing them and then writing their combined draft on the blackboard. This draft is then reviewed and rewritten until it is clear, accurate and natural. Once the team is happy with the draft it gets written into the exercise book of drafts, in pencil. It is their choice to use pencil even though I would prefer pen as it is easier to read. This draft is then read over and corrections marked with red pen. I take the draft and type it into my computer for eventual printing.
In the space of a day, the draft has been through chalk, pencil and pen to reach pixels. This may seem like a lot of rewriting to some, so let me explain the reasons for each.
Chalk is affordable and lasts well. Whiteboards are fancy, but the markers have a bad habit of drying up at inconvenient moments. This is not a problem with chalk, although kids getting hold of it and having some creative fun can diminish supplies rapidly. Using the blackboard allows everyone to contribute to one written edition as it is easily seen and commented on.
Pencil allows for endless rubbing out as people revise their ideas, which is a definite advantage over pens. Pens also don’t work well if people rest their hand on the page while writing and leave a trail of sweat and grease behind. You can’t see this trail, but pens don’t work well where people have previously rested their hand on the page, as my co-workers tend to do.
Pixels require expensive equipment as well as training. Not only do computers cost a lot, but the equipment to power them costs as well. Learning computer skills takes time. At the moment I am the computer owner and operator for the Kope translation programme. One day we will have a computer for the team and I will take on the bigger challenge of teaching computer skills, but I know that it will be a big task.
Chalk, pencils, pens and pixels. These are our implements as we draft the Kope New Testament.