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Sunday, October 31, 2004

Saturday Report

I'll warn y'all up front that this is going to end up being a long post. I can feel it!

I'm a morning dawdler, so I drank coffee and dawdled. I preview all my email up on the server before I download it to my computer and I saw I had some entries for my contest, so I retrieved them. And in the thirty seconds it maybe took between checking email and downloading email, some spammer sent a note! I hate spam which is one of the main reasons why I preview all my email and this just torqued me off. So, I decided to sign them up for my Yahoo newsletter. :-) I know this won't do anything because spammers change email addresses like crazy, but it made me feel better. In fact, it made me feel so good, that I'm going to make it a regular policy.

It rained here most of the day yesterday, really light most of the time, mainly a sprinkle so it was just enough to mess up traffic. Despite this and the fact that I'm surrounded by road construction with roads closed or down to one lane, I managed to arrive on time for my haircut.

I did swing by the mall and Waldenbooks. There was a sale, buy 4 and the 5th is free. I figured if I found The Power of Two and bought two copies (one for me and one for my parents), it would be easy to find three other books I wanted to get. So I looked and looked and looked for TPOT. Not on the bestseller rack, but I really didn't expect to see it there since I'm such a new author. Not in the new paperback section or the short shelf unit near there. Not in the romance section. Hmm. This store must be adhering to the on-sale date of November 2nd. Now the question becomes do I ask if they have it and if I can sign it or do I just come back?

I decided to check for other November books from Dorchester, and sure enough, they were out on the shelves. I made another run through the store looking for TPOT. I finally found it on the small shelf unit near the new release paperbacks. One side had a big trade paperback coming way out and the other had a lot of paperbacks coming way out. But I figured this can't be a good thing if I can't pick out my own book in the store because I'd already perused this particular set of shelves. They had 5 copies of the book, so I took 2 and signed the other 3. And I confess, I could hardly wait to get home and check out the book. Actually, what I should have done was look at it in the mall parking lot because I was sooo tempted to check it over while I was driving. I didn't, of course, but I wanted to.

When I got home, I started laundry and started reading TPOT. Let's just say it was an experience. I hardly made any changes to the galley that didn't involve typos, but the changes I did make were important to me. A lot of them didn't get made!!! Including a sentence that makes NO SENSE as it appears in the book. I did NOT write it that way and I CORRECTED it in the galleys and it's STILL WRONG!!! ARGH!!!!

There was another moment were I shrieked too because the word tense that's there reads so stupid. I don't know if it's grammtically correct or not, but it reads wrong and that should be all that matters. That didn't get changed the way I marked it either. There were other things too and it just made me nuts! I could see it if I'd made a lot of changes, but I didn't. It was a very frustrating experience for me.

And to add to my frustration, whoever they sent TPOT to for line editing makes me nuts too. This person put COLONS in my book. COLONS!!! You don't use colons in fiction writing. Every time I saw one of those colons as I read, I just gnashed my teeth. And then there is this line editor's extremely ODD use of commas. Putting them in places where there should be NO comma and making my book read choppily.

I couldn't take it any more. I had to quit reading. I only made it about halfway through the book. I'll just have to hope that readers don't have this same reaction. I'm sure they won't. I mean this is my work, so I know what's wrong and I'm sure most readers won't be looking at the weird punctuation. Plus I tend to be a perfectionist, especially when it comes to my writing, so this was just more than I could take.