4/30/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, didn't go to work.

I bought five oranges and cut the edible part out and put it in the blender and made orange juice. I strained and drank it and it was good - it tasted exactly like store bought Tropicana or such. Then I realized, it would have cost the same for store-bought, with less mess.

It's that time at last -- Novel 3 is being sent to some editors next week. They may read it right away, or they may take a while. I really feel good that it's out of my hands for now. Of course, the editors who like it will have suggestions for changes. But for now, it's at least getting out there, so if someone else writes something similar or similar things happen on the news (and some things have), it won't thwart me.

It still will need some changes later, but it's in good enough shape for editors to tell me what they want. After four years, it was time to show it.

4/29/2005

A quote from my writing group tonight:

"I like where you say 'The goo oozed,' because you have four O's in a row."

(Note: This commentary did not come from me, nor was it about my story.)
Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

For the person who has everything...

4/28/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

4/26/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

Reader/writer J.K. writes: I think people of every generation will think they are on the cuttingedge of a revolution, though. Kids who grew up now will remember when they first got on the web or first got an iPod like we remember firstwriting BASIC or taping Friday Night Videos or seeing our first VCR.... Speaking of, I put some batteries in my TRS-80 Model 100 and tookpictures: Link

Also, writer Jennifer Weiner of Good in Bed fame (and other fine novels) mentioned in the Book Standard that my blog is one of the ones she reads! It's so nice to be mentioned by such an acclaimed author of women's fiction. Here's the link to the story on literary blogs and bloggers. Jennifer Weiner has, for many years, written her own blog. (I like it best when it talks about the literary world, which the last few entries do.)

4/25/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

Today at work, someone called me to complain about ME.

I heard that pop song "1985" on the radio this morning, about a woman who is stuck in 1985. That was 20 years ago...wow. When I was little, I used to hear grandparents and great-aunts talk about the commercials and trends of the '50s and think how cool and old-fashioned it was. I don't think I can quite adjust to doing that about the '80s yet. But some day, when my kids or nieces or nephews ask me what the '80s were like, what will I say?

I will say it was a wonderful, exciting time.

Even though some people my age complain that the '80s were cheesy, and even though there were some quite sucky aspects of my childhood, I think back on the first half of the decade as a wonderful era...

We were on the cutting edge of the computer revolution. Not actually "We," but the kids, not the adults. It was we who got so into video games that we begged our parents to bring computers into our homes. And those Apple IIe's and Vic-20s and TRS-80s allowed us merely to write BASIC programs like

10 REM "Hi"
20 GOTO 10

but we ushered in a revolution. Kids as young as 13 and 14 were hired by Atari. Sociologist Margaret Mead theorized that in the past, society was a "postfigurative" culture in which the young learned from the old and from tradition. Now we are a "prefigurative" where the old actually learn from the young. Those of us in Generation X helped a whole revolution sweep under our doors and onto our desks.

And the pop culture was wonderful, too. Waiting for your block to get cable; staying up on a Friday night because David Lee Roth was going to host Friday night videos; watching the "Thriller" video for the first time in your best friend's house; being bored and going to play outside because all the cartoons went off the air at noon on Saturday (well, actually that sucked); waiting for the new NBC or ABC fall lineup to see what else Stephen J. Cannell had in store; holding a tape recorder up to the speakers during American Top 40 on Sunday because it was the best way to tape the new Duran Duran song without springing for the record. Finding out the name of your friend's Cabbage Patch Kid. Being able to trick-or-treat to strangers' homes.

Was it all gravy? Of course not. But for some reason, I remember it fondly, and I "pity the fool" who doesn't appreciate it.

4/22/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

Reversal planned later.

4/20/2005

Your Brain is 86.67% Female, 13.33% Male

You have the brain of a girly girl
Which isn't a bad thing at all
You're emphatetic, caring, and in tune with emotions.
You're a good friend and give great advice.

What Gender Is Your Brain?
Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

Not a lot that's interesting on the internet today. It is Hitler's b-day and thus the anniversary of Columbine. Hopefully nothing else evil will happen today.

4/19/2005

That new pope is cute.
Yes, yes, yes...the wave was 70 feet high, not 7 feet.

Lost in translation

Alex, my Italian penpal, sent me more jokes:

the difference between a penis and a magic lamp? is that if you scrub the penis you can’t say that Who comes is a genius!

plin…

Two friends to the bar.
The first one: “Would you like to make sex in three?”
The second: “Wooow!!! It’s my dream!!!
The first: “ Well, if you run to your home maybe you will be still in time to !”

pling…

Pope said:
“Virginity is a Gift .”
Well. So donate it more often !

pling…

A woman confesses to her Pastor.
“Father – she says – after the Saint Mass to the Vaticano I made a *** to the priest ..
and the Pastor : “My dear girl, you now have to say three Ave Maria, but REMEMBER: your parish is this one!”

pling..

when it is night and I have sleeplessness, I take laxative. I don’t get sleep the same, but I have something to do anyway.

Two penis go for an hold-up into a bank. At one point a buzzer one comes in. The other ones look themselves in their faces and shout: “My God!! Robocop is here! “

pling… the end.
Thanks to D.S. for passing along this link to the blog of a NYC girl who had bedbugs. Eek. (This was in response to my response to a New Yorker article on the topic.) Makes you want to scratch just reading it.

I am very thankful that I don't have them - I don't think I could stand it for an hour, much less months.
Will later wake up, put on clothes, and go back to work.

To clarify regarding the cruise ship below...that's the one that was hit by the 7-foot wave. It was passing through NYC this afternoon.

So I meant to catch up on last week's stuff. There were all kinds of crazy errands to do, including manuscript madness. I handed off the latest version of Novel 3 to Agent 99. I also handed in the latest version of the Carrie Pilby sequel to my editor. The fun never ends!

Here is a LiveJournal started by a literary agent.

In other literary news, here's the newest takedown of Jonathan Safran Foer's book. No writer buys a $6.75M house and gets away with it!

4/18/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

That cruise ship just floated by outside. I took a pic and added some art.

4/17/2005

There are people who tell me they wish they lived in California because it's sunny all year. It sounds extremely boring to me.

Today was the first warm, sunny day of spring here in the NY metro area. Everyone outside looked like they were overjoyed. People were eating outside at corner cafes, wearing t-shirts and holding babies in their laps. New puppies were prancing proudly.

Some people wait until new year to make resolutions, to say things will change. Isn't it nice when you get to greet a new season four times a year?

4/16/2005

Woke up, put on clothes.

I should put this on the barometer blog, but I woke up with a headache, and then I checked, and the air pressure is as high as it ever gets - 30.49 inches. Ugh.

4/15/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, went to work. Same yesterday.

Busy week.

Much revising was done.

More later.

4/13/2005

Alex, my Italian penpal and Pilby reader, sent me a joke!:

>>there are two bats in their cave hanged down.
One says to the other: “ Which has it been the worse day in your life?”
And the other: “ when I got the diarrhoea..”
Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

Ugh, do I need a nap.

I think everyone is amazed at the Britney Spears news because she is a virgin.

4/12/2005

Writer Marty Beckerman has started a Livejournal. As he puts it, "LOL, you guys!!!!" I laughed out loud at this bit of commentary:

"One of the subjects I cover in Nation of Retards is the War Against Fast Food, led by insane Health Nazis who actually believe you should not have the choice to make yourself fat and ugly. ....Now they've convinced Sesame Street's Cookie Monster to eat healthier....STOP RAPING MY CHILDHOOD, YOU FUCKING FOOD FASCISTS!!!!!! COOKIE MONSTER EATS COOKIES, NOT TOFU!!!! HE IS NOT TOFU MONSTER!!!! YOU ARE THE MONSTERS, YOU EVIL COMMUNIST FUCKS!!!!!!"

I wish he wouldn't hold back so much. In unrelated news, I have to post comedian Adam Wade's doody essay later, which is equally poignant.

Agh

There was an advice column in a daily paper today where someone wrote in with a problem that is nearly IDENTICAL to the main character's problem in Novel 3. I e-mailed it to my agent and wrote something like, "This is my heart-attack of the day. Isn't that weird? So we have to hurry up and get the book out!"

In other news...this is not a joke:

Wisconsin Considers Legalizing Cat Hunting

MADISON, Wis. (April 12) - Feline lovers holding pictures of cats, clutching stuffed animals and wearing whiskers faced-off against hundreds of hunters at meetings around Wisconsin to voice their opinion on whether to legalize cat hunting.
Will soon wake up, get dressed, and go to work.

It's 3:53 a.m. and I've inputted 2/3 of the changes on Novel 3. So I'm going to sleep.

4/11/2005

Doogie just reported this to me:

Man gets 90 days for attacking girlfriend for supporting Kerry

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) - An 18-year-old man has been sentenced to 90 days in jail for attacking his girlfriend for supporting Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry last fall. Steven Soper pleaded guilty yesterday to false imprisonment, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, battery and resisting arrest without violence. Prosecutors say Soper pointed a knife at 18-year-old Stacey Silveira and threatened to kill her. The couple had been dating for two years. Defense attorney Michael Salnick says the teenagers' sometimes-volatile relationship became violent when Soper learned Silveira planned to vote for Kerry instead of President Bush. Salnick says Soper had wanted to join the Army.

Blame Florida.
Look at what's happened to...

Someone posted this in a Great American Hero newsgroup today:

"What I have to say is this, I know that you guys aren't children because if you were you wouldn't even know that this show existed. Most of you are in your thirties or older. So I have to say this, grow up. Just because a song is not on the disk doesn't mean you can't still enjoy the show. I mean even if the original songs were on it it wouldn't make a bit of difference in the way the show goes. I think that they did a wonderful job replacing the songs. I haven't
seen the show in over twenty years and to tell you the truth I don't even remember what songs other than the theme, which is my all time favorite song by the way, that are on the show. And even then they weren't by the original artist because back then they didn't have
the original artist singing the songs because it would have cost them more money in production costs. And I would prefer that the original artist sing their own songs other than someone else who would just kill the song all together. The only song that I am conserned with is the theme. As long as it is on the DVDs then that is all that matters to me.


Anyway if they had put the original songs on the disks then they would have had to charge more for the sets and not all of us can afford that kind of thing. Which would you
prefer, paying 60 or 70 dollars on the sets or 20 to 30? I for one am glad that Stephen J Cannell is making them more affordable to us. I don't care about the other songs just the theme. It is bad enough that I can't buy all the seasons of the X-Files because they are over $120 or even the Star Trek shows. Don't try to make this show an arm and a leg to get a hold of. We are darn lucky to have the disks in the first place. I have the first two seasons and let me
tell you that I have done nothing but laugh and enjoy myself watching them. I think I enjoy them more now than I did back then. Maybe because I get all the little hidden adult jokes that are in there that I just didn't get when I was ten years old and was watching it because I lust loved (and still do) science fiction and had a humongous crush on William Katt. I don't remember that a song was during a scene and I wouldn't even care less. I still watch the show for that the episode is about and watch how Ralph, Bill, and Pam save the day. I also love watching the relationships between all the characters on the show, Ralph, Bill, Pam, and Ralph's students two.

You people are adults, start acting like ones and quit complaining about the songs on the disks or what artwork that people chose to draw or anything else. Please make this board about talking about the show and the episodes and what the people on the show did back
then and what they are doing now. Creating fun games or writing poems about the show. I would hate to have to leave this group because all I see here is a buch of grown children complaining about songs and artwork. And I can tell you that I am getting pretty sick
of seeing it everyday in my e-mail. You don't know how close I am to cancelling my membership in this group. I have an eleven year old nephew and he has watched the show with me and I have to tell you that he likes the show just the way it is and I don't even think that twenty years from know that he will care about what music is on the show. Except how much of a fuss that his aunt makes about the theme song that is.

So please let's stop wasting our time on such a childish endevour. Like I said, we are adults and we should start acting like it."
This seems to be all the rage, so I'd better weigh in, too:

If I ever end up in a persistent vegetative state...I want to be kept alive until every amount of money and heart is drained from you people, until your entire being is sucked dry of will and emotion!

Seriously, if I'm beyond reviving...I'm not answering what I want you to do. I mean, isn't that a little personal? Why should I put it on the internet? It's for me and my family.

Plus...really, it's slightly creepy to talk about. More than slightly creepy.

Very creepy.
Will later wake up, put on clothes, go to work.

My entries have gotten so dull lately that I actually got two comments on my remark that I was craving chicken. So I'd better write something pertinent.

Over the last two weeks, I've been revising Novel 3 some more, on the computer. It went from 379 pages back up to 400. Then I printed it out on Saturday and read the thing on paper over this weekend, making notes all over it. I seem to have slashed through a lot of sentences, so it probably will drop back down once I input all these changes into the computer.

After I input them and print it out, it goes off to my agent at the end of the week [note: sorry about the snobbery of saying "my agent"; I'm not famous or nothing. From now on I'll just refer to her as 99.]

She will send it out the first week in May to various publishing houses to see who's interested.

Some may read it quickly, some may take a while. Some will say they like it and want to see changes, some may love it the way it is, some may say it's not for them.

But I am very happy with the new version and I think it's -- at last -- ready to go!!

The dark side...

I've done so much revision that when I finally read the paperback version of Stephen King's oft-recommended On Writing yesterday, I made a few corrections on the pages. Hey, no writer is perfect. I'll try to scan them in later.

He says a few things in there that I think might scare people away from writing. I don't like the idea of scaring anyone away from writing. You can't always believe that you're going to write best sellers, but if you want to write, then write. He says that a writer might need at least four hours a day uninterrupted. Yeah, if it's your full-time job -- but I find that unlikely. In fact, I've found that sometimes it's healthy to have two-week periods when I'm taking a break from the actual writing and instead am constantly thinking about the book and characters so I have more fully-developed ideas when I go back into it. But I've never written full-time, so my process is different from his.

[Peanut gallery says: "Yeah, that's why he's sold fifty novels and you haven't." OK, OK.]

Other notes...

Have you ever left something on a plane, realized as you were about to leave the airport, turned around, tried to get it back since you just stepped off the plane five minutes ago, and they all sit there talking to each other on walkee-talkees but for some reason can't just go get your item off the damn plane?

It's happened to me twice, and it was just a small thing I left there both times, but what a pain. You walk out those security gates, and two seconds later it's like you were never there. The plane and crew has disappeared, and your item is in neverland. Anyway, the moral of the story is, make sure you have everything, because otherwise you'll be sitting there for an hour while they try to locate the Incredible Disappearing Crew to see if they found your stuff.

And what's with pilots and crew members giving these long monologues about the windspeed and temperature. I don't care. I also don't care how many miles up we are. There is nothing I can do about it, is there? Tell me if there's a blizzard or hurricane, but otherwise, just fly the plane properly and make sure we don't crash.

Is it just me?

Ever since I read that New Yorker piece about an increase in bedbug infestations in New York last week, I've scratched myself to sleep.

One more comment

There was an essay in the Sunday New York Times today about a woman going to a sperm bank to select a donor from a list of available men. She gets to read their characteristics to narrow it down. What I wonder is...there are only certain men who are going to donate sperm probably - men who need the money. I can't see a guy doing it for fun. So already the pool is narrowed a bit, right? You're going to be mating with someone who needs to sell his sperm for cash. When I went to a Iveee Leeg college, there used to be ads in the college paper for women to donate their eggs. I guess the egg donation places wanted smartypants eggs. But I don't remember sperm banks placing ads. A college student would clearly need the money for the right reasons. But since sperm banks aren't advertising there, does that mean they're getting 35-year-old men who are broke? Not to be a snob - being poor makes you cuter - but I'm just saying that perhaps there is not as big a cross-section of sperm as some might think.

This concludes our radio broadcast of "Speaking of Sperm." For all of us here, good night.

4/08/2005

Woke up, put clothes on, went to work.

I feel like eating fried chicken and it's 8 a.m.

I don't really eat fried chicken anyway.

4/06/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

Celebrity deaths in the last 24 hours: Saul Bellow, Prince Ranier.

4/05/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

I co-hosted trivia tonight. Do you know who did the guitar solo for Michael Jackson's "Beat It"? Who hosted Saturday Night Live the most times? (Eddie Van Halen, Steve Martin.) Those were my co-host's questions.

Originally I decided not to post the list of team names, because it might offend Dawn's readers. But I decided to anyway. Apologies to whoever this offends.

- [Name of my co-host] touched me in a funny place and it wasn't my elbow
- Michael Jackson's Nether Glands Ranch
- Pope Fiction
- Big Units
- Name
- How many popes does it take to screw in a light bulb? Normally one, but he's dead
- The Pope's not dead, he's drinking Margaritas in Mexico with Biggie
- Brain in a shoebox
- John Paul & Terri, a match made in heaven
- The Great White Pope
- Blood Farm AKA Hemoglobin Explosion

I've thought of more things to post, but then I get too busy. So the talk on French vs. English bulldogs will have to wait. (French ones are on the cover of New York Mag this wk.) Oh, hell, here's the main point - English bulldogs are cuter but have big medical problems. Anyway, adopt a shelter dog.

4/04/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, went to work.

Gawker reports on Jonathan Safran Foer buying a $6.75 million home. I was gonna do that after I sold my two books, too, but I didn't want people to start asking to use my pool.

4/03/2005

Woke up, put on clothes, etc.

My e-mail "in" box got up to like 150 emails. I finally caught up.

4/01/2005

Will later wake up, put on clothes, and go to work.

It's going to snow 16 inches on Sunday!!!

Ok, like you really fell for it. Happy April phule's day.

Seriously, though, I was excited to realize that the collection of novellas is up on Amazon (this is true). So you can order the Pilby sequel already!!!

Also, there really will be a lot of rain this weekend, and every weekend in March. Don't say I didn't warn you. It happens every year, and every year, everyone gets pissed off. April showers, you know. Live with it.