in which I am rescued by PBW

I really meant to write the next post about plot/story yesterday. Then I meant to write it today. And now it’s almost midnight, and I don’t have enough wits about me to write something I really have to think about.

Then PBW threw out this meme. I am saved.

Eight random facts about me:

1. I first got braces at age 28; I made the orthodontist take them off two years later because I refused to get married with a metal mouth.

2. My eyesight is really, really bad. I wore contacts from age fourteen (yes, in 1970 I was wearing contacts) until age 42, when my eyes simply refused to cooperate. Every day I put on my glasses and wish for contacts.

3. I adore dogs. I especially love smallish dogs (10-15 pounds); I would have ten of them if the Mathematician would only see the light. I’d have a couple Havanese, a couple of small terriers of various kinds (Norfolk, Australian, etc), and the rest would be rescues.

4. When I left academia and started working out of the house, I stopped doing housework of any kind. Now the fantastic Isabel comes for one day a week and whips the whole house and all the laundry into shape. If money were no issue, I’d pay her a huge salary with full benefits and she’d only have to work two days a week. Because she’s that good.

5. I am really bad at cards and board games both. My brain doesn’t work that way. Or at least that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.

6. I like rap (not all, but a lot of it), and I always have, since the beginning.

7. If money were no issue, I’d spend all my time taking art courses and playing with paint, pastels, pencils, and every kind of fiber-related material. And listening to books on tape while I worked.

8. My daughter is taller, skinnier, far prettier, smarter, more politically savvy, and better read than I was at her age. She eats what she likes and wears a size two; she rarely breaks out, and she’s got both the Mathematician’s math genes and my storytelling/writing stuff. My biggest and bestest accomplishment ever: the Girlchild.

I’m supposed to tag EIGHT people, which is really way too much. I can put down a couple names. None of these people will play, but there will be eight names:

Shonda Rhimes, Alice Munro, Robyn Bender, Al Gore, Annie Proulx, Noam Chomsky, Anna Quinlan, A.S. Byatt


PS Speaking of Shonda Rhimes, this is reason enough for my great big ole girlcrush.

10 Replies to “in which I am rescued by PBW”

  1. You can see that after so much work, the urge to use all the information would be pretty strong. But that’s just the problem. You can’t dump all that on the reader when you’re writing a novel. It just won’t fly. You have to tuck things in here and there, carefully.

    You know, this applies to just about any kind of detailed background research, not just medical information. I have approximately six college-ruled legal-sized pads full of scribblings and background notes, all things that, when I read them, I knew would be relevant to the thing I am working on — bits of science, research on weaving, herbals, fairy tales — and I’ve been working on pegging bits into the story outline/first draft for what seems like forever.

    Once you do get the bits distributed, there’s the problem of how to write about them without tripping over them. My biggest fault in writing is inserting a factual screed into a conversation between characters or as a thought-monologue for the POV character.

    At least I’m getting plenty of practice at ripping that kind of thing out of scenes, but it would be nice to just gracefully incorporate information on the first run — kind of write around the shape of the factual chunk so it’s made evident to the reader through the awareness of the characters.

  2. I LOVE stuff like that! When an author has taken time and energy to put such factual detail into a book, it thrills me. I was all over telling my family all about early faccinations and the grizzley details of Hannah’s lessons. IMO that really adds to the book and your reading experience.

  3. And if that entry in Shondra’s blog (?) wasn’t reason enough to love her, the fact that she’s writing a series just for Jeffrey Dean Morgan means that I will adore her forever.

  4. Why are you bad at cards and board games? What do you mean that your brain doesn’t work that way?

  5. I think I am bad at cards and board games because I get a kind of stage fright. There’s this perform! aspect to playing games, and it makes me shut down. Be smart, witty, right, RIGHT now.

    Just can’t do it.

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