After my first night of TEI, I was wondering if I could finish the leaf. I don't know if it was reading Thoreau's scribble or all the symbols associated with TEI, but I was exhausted. GIMP was a great source to use because of it's abilities, but I still couldn't read a good amount of the words, and the different codes to remember was just too much. I had to take several breaks throughout the process because I just couldn't focus on the project. When all was said and done, I had many errors in my encoding, but it was just a first draft.
When I went to class on Monday, I learned about a few more tricks that could help me out with my leaf, and I was feeling a little more optimistic. Probably the biggest help was the reading document that was provided to us in dropbox. When I went home and started to read some of the document, I realized that I had seen a lot of the same sentences in my encoding, and all of a sudden, the words that were at first "illegible" became very much legible. This document changed the project for me and suddenly I was picking up steam and reading Thoreau's handwriting much easier.
As far as the encoding goes, I learned something new about it each class. The first class I learned the basics(which wasn't quite enough). The class following that, I learned a lot more about adding things to the encoding, and that is also when I discovered the reading doc. Last class I got a better grasp on strikethroughs and deletions as well as metamarks.
I'm fairly confident that I did well on this project. I know I'm just a beginner in text encoding, but with the pieces of advice that I got, I was able to produce something that shows my comprehension.