Thursday, June 23, 2011

Lost Without a Dictionary

All four of my dictionaries are packed away for a move to Portland, OR. I miss them. I stopped using because it's germy. You can pick up more goobers from that website than a frosted doughnut dropped face down at a swimming pool locker room. Just consult the Wall Street Journal.

It's been maybe four or so days living without them, but I've gone to the place I usually keep them several times now to look a word up, only to remember they're packed. With four, I usually look up a word in at least two dictionaries and compare. The definitions are always different. Word choice is everything, isn't it?

The NYT Book Review from April 10 has an article about a book of poetry, Beautiful and Pointless: A Guide to Modern Poetry by David Orr, and the reviewer, David Kirby, writes that more poetry readers tend to love poetry than simply like it. He uses an unscientific method to conclude this (ubiquitous Google search), but it's interesting. I'll apply that to my dictionary habits. I think I love words.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

What I've Given Up to Write

The extras had to go.

Things I do much less frequently (sometimes not at all) to make time to write:

LESS: Balance my checkbook. Cook anything worthy of more than a C+. Bake. Weed. Dust. Vacuum/wash my car. Mop my bathrooms. Chase dust bunnies. Wash my dog. Volunteer at school (ouch, I know). Drink alcohol (ouch, I know). Facebook. Shop for groceries. Polish my toenails. Attend social events. Worry about whether I'm attending social events. Did I mention alcohol? Match socks. Wear socks. Sort socks. Read the newspaper. Watch TV. And, shower.

What I do more of that helps my writing:

MORE: Give in to the urge to write. Spend time with my family and dog. Run. Let other people cook and  praise their offerings. Read. Rummage for chocolate. Think about drinking alcohol. Love. Watch good movies. Write this blog. Read blogs. Tweet. Encourage others to write. Be satisfied I can't do it all.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Moby Dick Status

Just typing Moby Dick into a blog post got me more hits. Hey, yeah, I'm still reading it, although I put it down for about three weeks to read Veronica by Nicholas Christopher. I like MB; my speed stinks. I anticipate, yes, probably, looking like, mid-November to finish MB. "What!" you say (or shout). That's how slow I am. And I'll throw in another book or two to gum up the progress.

But I'm courageous to admit my effort will be drawn out, don't you think? I'm courageous to have this blogspot and let you in on the less-than-fascinating life of a hopeful novelist. I'm courageous to even write, period. I love and fear going to libraries and bookstores. Love the possibilities, the treasures underneath the covers, many I'll never open. Fear that I am nameless and swimming in a sea of writers. And most of the retail shelves are backlist. The new stuff never makes it out.

Dash it all. I'll get there. I'm persistent. If a writer doesn't have a pound (or ten) of it in reserve, forget it. Soon, it'll be more than Moby Dick that gets people to hit this blog. But hey, come all.