Tape manuscript to fridge. Throw thousands of tiny comma magnets. Keep the ones that stick. #amwriting #amediting
For the past HOUR two people a few feet away have been loudly discussing how to divide up the cost of a party for EIGHT PEOPLE. No, honestly. I am tempted to say ,”I will pay for the whole damn party if you shut up.”
*In my writing place. Though I believe it’s a leading contender in the “Anywhere ever” category.
That’s what the couple next to me is doing. But they are doing it quietly, not so much as a lip smack. So I’m fine with that.
Just when I thought I’d had every interruption known to man in my writing place, something akin to fire alarms sounded all over the room. It was nearly everybody’s cellphone alerting us to beware of flash flooding. Man the lifeboats.
A small press was actually seeking submissions so I sent in a completed manuscript** today. Now I feel bereft, like a parent sending one of her many, yet equally brilliant, children off to college, if college were a dank dungeon from which they might never emerge.
*Not to be confused with fifty shades of anything.
**There is no such thing.
Note to woman with 18 month old: no it’s not impossible to stop him from dragging chairs across the cement floor. Try harder.
Somehow I didn’t get the memo and showed up at at a cancelled critique session (30 miles away). However, my critique partner was having a lousy week.* And we had tea and she gave me a really good idea for my manuscript.** All in all, it was an excellent critique session.
*When the best thing that’s happened all week is your dishwasher broke, that is one lousy week.
**Like cut down on the phrase “what you should do” if you’ve used it 8 times in 23 pages.
I know some writers find writing frustrating, even agonizing.* I, on the other hand, feel transported to some mystical alternate universe.**
*and a bunch of other terms, some of which aren’t appropriate this more or less PG blog
**where the phone doesn’t ring and I don’t think about the laundry I left in the dryer. Oh, hell. Now I’m thinking about it.
Except the chance to Skype with my granddaughters on the occasion of a first birthday. Please note that I have never forced you to look at pictures.
So one of my critique partners who usually gives very good criticism suggested I rearrange three chapters in my mystery. To anyone who thinks I should attempt this: in a mystery, continuity is everything. Merely moving a sentence or changing a line of dialogue can unravel the whole plot. I know this because, not to toot my own horn,* I’ve scripted quite a few, some commissioned, that collectively have had over 600 performances.
The defense rests.
*Have you noticed people only says this right before they toot their own horns?**
**I’ve never understood this metaphor. Plus, you certainly wouldn’t toot anyone else’s. It would be unsanitary.