Monthly Archives: March 2008

Editing the one inch picture frame

So, as many of you know, I lost my mind on Wednesday evening and had my kids toss my manuscript into the air. Not only did this provide them with loads of fun, but this way of editing?

I have much love for it.

Not that it’s 100% easy or anything. Injecting tension, sharpening prose, micro-editing. But the thing is: all you have is that one page. It’s the editing equivalent of Anne Lamott’s one inch picture frame for draft writing.

This isn’t the sort of editing I’d do for plot continuity, character arc, story flow, and so on. But it is one of those edits I need to do. The fact the pages are in no particular order means I start each page fresh. It’s just me, the page, and my trusty Uni-ball Vision Elite pink pen. (The kids agreed; this would be the pink edit. Purple’s up next.)

And sure, there are 345 pages in this current version of my manuscript. But hey, all I have to worry about is one at a time.


Filed under Writing

Wow. I should take him up on that

From the SPAM files, too funny not to share.

I am Mr. Wang Hongzhang, Chief Disciplinary Officer, People’s Bank of China (PBC).I have an obscured business proposal of US$24.5million for you.
Please reach me promptly if interested.
Kind Regards,
Wang Hongzhang

One question: What is a Chief Disciplinary Officer, and what, pray tell, does a CDO (like the acronym?) do?

Oh, wait. According to Google, he exists. And you know Google is never wrong. So if he exists, and this email exists, then woo-baby, hand over the 24.5 million. Obscured or not.


Filed under Misc

The strange things we do on a Wednesday evening

Andrew and Kyra first tried to catch a rabbit. Do you see a rabbit? Because I don’t.


Andrew was frustrated with Kyra’s lack of understanding of his (mostly confusing) hand and arm signals. Then we came inside and tossed my manuscript in the air. No. Really. We did.

Here’s proof:


Even the dog helped:


Don’t you wish this was your manuscript?


There is actually a reason behind all the insanity. It’s an exercise from Donald Maass’ Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook. Tension on every page. The only way, according to Mr. Maass, to edit every page for tension is to do it out of order. I have no reason to doubt this. If nothing else, the kids had fun tossing the manuscript into the air.


Filed under Kids, Misc, Writing

My mood


Just sayin’.


Filed under Misc

White Easter

So, the Easter Bunny woke up yesterday to snow! Yes, we had a white Easter. It was looking very Christmassy outside. But we had colorful eggs to counteract all that pristine white:


The kids went to town with the wax crayon. Andrew wrote his name on one of the eggs; Kyra wrote Mommy. She also wrote Boo on another (why, I don’t know). Andrew wrote E=MC2 on yet another (again, I don’t know why). You see 11 eggs because one cracked during boiling. (Just one! I think that counts as a cooking non-disaster as far as I’m concerned.)

On Friday, we surprised the kids with a little getaway. There’s a hotel with a mini-water park (really, it’s just two small pools, some slides, and so on) that they have much love for. We stared there once when the power went out for a couple of days.

Anyway, we told them we were going out to eat. Bob took the kids while I stayed back and packed their swim stuff and an overnight bag. We ate dinner at the restaurant next to the hotel. Andrew, Mr. Theatrics, was all: “Oh, I can smell the chlorine. It smells so good. Please can we get a room and go swimming?”

“Oh, no, no, no. Easter weekend, I’m sure they don’t have any rooms.”

And so on with the dramatics and denials.

We left the restaurant, then drove around to where our room was. The kids were bouncing, not quite sure what was going on. We still didn’t say anything, just grabbed the bags, headed up the stairs, and into our room.

Then they got it.

So even though it snowed all weekend long, a good, if exhausting, time was had by all.


Filed under Kids

Why I’m glad I’m not commuting today


Kyra wants to know why winter is still here on the second day of spring. I say: blame basketball. When the tournaments are all over, then we’ll have spring.

Edited to add

A second reason:



Filed under Kids, Misc

Is there an alternative?

As first seen over at Marianne’s:

Your Taste in Music:

80’s Alternative: Highest Influence
90’s Alternative: Highest Influence
Adult Alternative: Highest Influence
Alternative Rock: Highest Influence
80’s Pop: High Influence

I don’t know. Seems inconclusive to me.


Filed under Quizzes