Saturday at 2 pm found me in an armchair by the window. Outside, a steady stream of people walked by my house to the park. It was sunny and warm, but I had my laptop propped up on my outstretched legs and I wasn’t going anywhere.
“I think I finished my book,” I announced to the room. DP and the Houseling (our temporary downstairs tenant; please note that “The Houseling” is a term he picked out for himself) looked up from their phones.
“Do you mean—” DP began.
“Finished finished?” The Houseling said at the same time.
“Well, no,” I said. “Just draft 18.” DP looked disappointed and The Houseling gave me a high five. (The Houseling is also writing a memoir and has lucked into a cheap apartment that comes with a resident dog and in-house writing support. We even feed him periodically.)
I fixed my tabs (which Scrivener always fucks up), scanned for last-minute issues that I needed to address, found two meaty quotes to throw in, and sent it off to my betas.
For the first time in two months, I am looking at my editorial work without a book hanging around my neck like an albatross. Instead of reliving and documenting my life, trying to wring meaning and interest out of the stories, I am saving authors from themselves.
Why, before 8:30 this morning, I changed “human-hunted gazelle teeth” to “teeth of human-hunted gazelle.” The humans were hunting gazelles for their meat not their teeth. If I can accomplish such feats of clarity before breakfast, what could I possibly do before lunch?
What feats are you going to accomplish before lunch?