A Day in the Life of a Freelance Editor ?>

A Day in the Life of a Freelance Editor

You might think what a freelance editor does all day is worthy of a blog post. That would be a classic example of wrong thinking. But for the sake of filling this space I’m going to tell you anyway and since I just established that a freelance editor’s day isn’t all that interesting, some of the details below will be complete fabrication. Feel free to decide which ones. 6:14 AM – Get urgent phone call from Stephen King pleading with…

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The Room in the Elephant ?>

The Room in the Elephant

It lies on the kitchen table like a tipped tombstone, this year of late nights and early mornings, of exhilaration and frustration, of too much coffee and too few showers. The Froot Loops box is prostrate, casualty of another rushed breakfast. The kids are out the door. The dog is bark-begging back in. The spouse is gridlocked, Van Halen blasting him into the past if only for one more exit. His parting word to you, “finally.” You repeat the word…

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A Word, Please ?>

A Word, Please

Think of a word you don’t like – one that makes you squirm. Sure, it could be a common word like “moist” or “chalky,” but choose something edgier – something you almost never say in real life. Got it? Okay, have a seat. Your word would like to have a word with you. Word: Hey. You: Um…hey? Word: Do you know why you’re here? You: Not exactly. Word: We need to talk about me. You: I don’t think we do….

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10 Things Writers Can Learn from a Brick ?>

10 Things Writers Can Learn from a Brick

All those “list” posts for writers annoy me. Especially the ones I’ve written. Most especially, this one: 1. A brick is skilled at staying on task. Put one in front of a computer, it will sit there for hours. 2. A brick doesn’t jump in front of a truck when it gets a rejection letter. 3. A brick understands the importance of structure. 4. A brick rarely complains on Twitter and Facebook about the unfairness of bricklayers. 5. A brick isn’t jealous of…

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A Life of Its Own ?>

A Life of Its Own

It begins as an idea in your head. Wait, back up. That’s not entirely accurate. It starts long before that. It begins as a childhood daydream, as a parade of clouds, as a balance-beam walk along a railroad track. It begins with rock-skipping, dirt-digging, butterfly-following. It begins in beautiful words and hard words. In complaint and compliance. In monsters hiding under the bed. In hiding under the bed from monsters. It begins in the infinite space after the yes and…

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Absent Brilliance ?>

Absent Brilliance

Brilliance isn’t something you can buy for yourself. You can only receive it as a gift. Some writers – I’d call them The Lucky Ones except for the fact that their brilliance is usually accompanied by a corresponding (and non-returnable) insanity – are granted the gift by the gods. Or The God. Or the universe. Or fate. (Pick one.) They’re born with it. They can’t deny it. They can’t escape it. It is woven into their being. Tell them to…

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Saturation Point ?>

Saturation Point

Sit down, we need to talk. Recently I’ve been observing some rather disturbing patterns in your behavior. It all started out innocently enough. You had an idea, then a dream, then a plan. You were going to be a writer. In the beginning, you wrote. And verily, your writing was crap. So you started hanging out in a dimly-lit bookstore, trying to look casual leaning against the shelf while stealing secrets from books on writing. You fully intended to buy…

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