Hey All!

Last week I was finally, I mean finally after what seemed like forever, like 2 months, a major plateau where I was stuck at 120-130 wam. Last week I tookd at speed take test, 160 wam for 5 min and passed with 99% accuracy. But I've been practicing my lits and jcs and I can't seem to pass the speed of around 140. If I was able to do that well on a Q/A then why am I having such a hard time breaking this plateau when it's slower?

Does anyone have any suggestions out there?


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Testimony and Lit are two very different skills. There is a reason the RPR is 180 LIt/200 JC/225 Testimony. Jury Charge and Literary dictations are less predictable and more dense. Those little phrases you use in Testimony don't get you anywhere on a Literary take. Set a goal for yourself of getting the JC next, and practice or learn your JC briefs (Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury, preponderence of the evidence, . . .). As far as the Lit goes, practice polysyllabic words and original material.
Hi, Carrie.

I guess the best thing to do would be to do your Lits and JCs at 160 WPM as well.

I'm pretty sure you have your basic phrases down (you know ... "of_the," "that_was," etc.) ... but if you don't, learn them! They come in handy no matter what you're writing.

Tami already said to work on your JC briefs. I'm sure there's a thread on here or over on Depoman that is devoted to JUST JC briefs.

Grab that list, check your dictionary to see if those terms are in there, add them if they're not, or learn them if they are.

As for Lit, Tami is right: JC/Testimony and Lit are two different skills.

I don't know what theory you're using, but if you're using Phoenix, there's something built into the theory called "Increments of spelling" ... which, in theory (ha ha), should allow you to stroke pretty much any foreign name or term that comes your way, whether it's in your dictionary or not.

I am currently transcribing a 45 minute (Skype) call about economics ... and the guy is throwing around names of currencies I have never heard of ... and which (of course!) aren't in my dictionary.

Using a combination of finger spelling and increments of spelling, I managed to stroke some of these terms out -- but I still had to do some Googling to see what exactly he was talking about (the term was "Riyal," by the way; a Saudi currency ... but there's another term he's using which I just can't get!).

Check your theory book (or the website for your theory) to see if there's a phonetic table available for your theory ... and (hopefully) an explanation of how to actually use it.

Get quick enough at doing that, and that should also help ... but it also can't hurt to get quicker figuring out briefs for the occasional odd term that comes up.

Good luck ...!

"For a Good (steno) Time ...."
Half of it is mental -- and if anyone should know about mental, it would be me. :-)
I remember in the days of the fossil when I was in school, I breezed through all of em and thought, this ain't difficult. What's the fuss about? At nine months and having passed my 175 Q&A and 140 lit I was feeling pretty dang cocky. And then I sat on 200 wpm for three whole months. Couldn't get the damn thing at all. If you are getting it at home you can get it at school. So i got to the stage where I was more angry with myself than I was fearful of the test and passed that 200 with four errors -- all in the first 20 seconds (nerves). It really sometimes becomes a combination of getting over your nerves and getting the right take. Stick at it. When you blow through the plateau, things get easier! And trust me, it sounds with your attitude, you are already there, you just need confirmation of it with a dang test.


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