Friday, October 01, 2010

Top 5 Things to Make the Writing World a Better Place

First, a couple of housekeeping items:
Still haven't heard from Dan, winner of the redundancy contest. He'll forfeit his prize if I don't have a way to get the prize to him by Saturday night.

Book signings for Chocolate Never Faileth (with FUDGE SAMPLES at both!):

TODAY (Friday, October 1)
BYU Bookstore, 5-8 PM

TOMORROW (Saturday, October 2)
Deseret Book Flagship store, SLC
4:00 - 5:30 PM

Now for today's post:

Top 5 Things to Make MY Writing World a Better Place

Writer's Digest had someone list the "top 5 things to make THE writing world a better place" in their top 10 issue.

I'm already taking the number down to 5, so I can change the premise, too, right?

Things to make MY writing world a better place:

1. A crystal ball.
Not knowing is probably the worst part of writing and publishing. Whether it's submitting and waiting to hear back for acceptance or rejection or trying to figure out which of your ideas would be most marketable, or a hundred other things, not knowing is simply the worst. If I had a little crystal ball to consult about what to write, what's the right place for it, and just the right moment to hit SEND, aaaah . . . life would be so much easier.

2. WordPerfect as the industry standard.
I love, love, love WordPerfect. It's the best and most user-friendly word processor out there. If a techno-idiot (like yours truly) doesn't know how to do something, you can muddle you way through figuring it out. (I have done so many a time.)

Not so with Word. That program, I swear, is of the devil. The newer versions are getting better, but dang, it's hard to figure anything out with it, and it refuses to listen to you, thinking it's smarter than you are.

When I first started writing, everyone took WP files: magazines, newspapers, and even my publisher. Not anymore. Now I have both programs, and I've been forced to learn Word, at least, parts of it. I still use WP whenever I can, though.

Because it's not lame.

3. A housekeeper and cook.
That person would also do grocery shopping and laundry. Man, having someone else deal with all that would free up so much time!

Pardon while I bask in the fantasy . . .

4. Have a body that needs 4 hours of sleep. Or 5 or 6.
As it is, I have a body that, to really function, needs around 8 1/2 or 9 hours of sleep regularly. Lately it's been about 7 1/2. Not good. (REALLY not good . . .) People talk about waking up early to write, and I admire that.

I hope they don't think I'm a wimp, but in all honesty, getting up two hours early is NOT an option for me if I want any semblance of a life (or if my children want a mom). Fatigue is a migraine trigger for me. If I cut out two hours of sleep, I'd wake up early, write, then collapse, whimpering, in a fetal position for the rest of the day. (I'm already paying for getting only 7 1/2 hours). But dang, I love the idea of being able to stay up late and get up early to get SO MUCH DONE.

5. A reward machine.
You know: I made my word count for the day/finished research on this article/completed an edit for a client/revised this chapter/sent out 3 queries. Immediately a truffle pops out. Or a coupon for a free massage. Or a ten dollar bill. There's always a reward, but you never know what.

I'd be so productive!

What would make your (writing or other) world a better place?


LisAway said...

I'm going to see if my mom will be on campus and can get me a signed copy of your book. Oh yes I am!

I love all your ideas (except about WP because I don't know it). The reward machine is especially innovative. :)

Amanda D said...

I'm so with you on WordPerfect. I love it. I know it. I do. not. like Word at. all. Ick. Like you, however, I have been forced to learn it. Luckily, my husband is a Word wizard and can help me with everything that I can't figure out.

Something that would make my writing world better? Having my kids see my time on the computer as a good thing. :)

Good luck this weekend, and have fun!

Kristina P. said...

I had no idea people still used WordPerfect anymore!

Jordan said...

Yes, yes, yes! ON 2, 3 and 4 especially.

(Recently I've seen a number of people insulting WP by saying its users should leave the 20th century. I'm sorry [not] but the show codes function alone made WP9 better than Word 2007 [the most recent versions I've used of both].)

Could the reward machine also take away baby weight and give us an endorphin boost? Or will we still have to exercise? ;)

Also, I'd like to have all the time in the world to write without sacrificing time with my family, and I'd like to be able to write faster. Like finish a book in a week or two.

Susan Anderson said...

I'd opt for the free massage...

And I like WP better than Word, too. My law office used it, and it was GREAT.


TisforTonya said...

I want a reward machine... maybe then I'd go do my laundry... maybe.

(I finally blogged about my biggest "word nerd" annoyance - peeked and piqued... and then I thought of MANY others thanks to the comments)

Jessica G. said...

Validation. Knowing whether what I'm currently losing sleep over is any good.
And a housekeeper would be nice!

lesa said...

Good luck with your signings and congrats on your new book!

Rebecca Irvine said...

Time, time, time, and more time!! If I had more time in the day to write I would just love it.

Scott said...

Wow: WP. I remember using that when we got our first computer. It was still in DOS format; WP 5.1 I believe. My mom would agree with you. She used that program right up until a few years ago when Word took over.
As for MY writing world: I want that crystal ball! If I knew I wouldn't STOP writing. As it is I let that veiled future deter me. The other thing would be a cash machine so I wouldn't have to have a 'job.' I could just write and if that doesn't pay I go to my trusty cash machine until the writing does pay. Ah, I dare to dream!

Lisa Loo said...

#5 made me snort my crystal light.
I don't write so I won't participate but I wanted to let you know that the loser who said you won a $25 Amazon gift card in their give away FINALLY emailed it through Amazon. "Hopefully you will get it sooner than later", she said sheepishly.

Unknown said...

Something that would improve my writing life? Guts. Just enough guts to actually call the MS finished and send it off to potential publishers.

LDS_Publisher said...

Hi, Annette. You won a prize by commenting on one of the LDS Publisher blogs. CLICK HERE to see what you won. Send me your mailing address ASAP.

Rebecca Blevins said...

Hmm. . .how about the ability to consume massive amounts of chocolate while I write and not gain an ounce?

Volume buttons on my kids, and the ability to help themselves so I can have some uninterrupted writing time.

I so hear you on the 7 1/2 hours thing. I need 9 to be really functional and I rarely get that much.

Oh, and I also need a robot to clean my house. I don't want a maid; she'd make me feel uncomfortable being in my personal space.

Melanie Jacobson said...

Hear, hear for #3!

wendy said...

I can imagine that those things would be valuable to you....especially the housekeeper part so you can devote more time to your writing without worrying about the mundane.

What would make MY world a better place.....well, I do not write, no skills there
but My world would be pretty much perfect if my children and grandchildren did not live so far away.

oh, and a personal trainer and cook

somecookIsew said...

I soooo hear you on #2! Word is a pain in the you-know-where! Having lost my (pirated) WP program a couple of computers ago, I'm stuck with Word which comes installed on new computers (or at least mine!)

The housekeeper and cook? More than just my writing would be helped along!

* said...

Love the truffle reward machine, I could work with that.

I regularly sleep 6 hours a night, but do much better with 7 hours of sleep. I've also been known to snatch a quick afternoon nap, but when that's not possible, I fall into fetal position pretty quickly.

How was the BYU book signing? Wish I could've been there, but will have to do with ordering your chocolatey book online (still, a sweet treat!).

Lara Neves said...

Okay. I LOVE WP. I hate that I got a new computer and it didn't come packaged like it was on my old computer. I miss it. I really hate Word, and it's not like I have to use it to the extent you would. Sigh.

Also, I totally am with you on the 9 hours of sleep thing. I kind of hate it. I'm very jealous of all those bodies who can function on much less!

Fun list!

Cranberryfries said...

I'll take your 5 and add to it a seatbelt type mechanism that would keep my butt in the chair for at least an hour so I could write something. I keep thinking, "I'll get this done first and then I'll write." but the somethings keep adding up. :)

Valerie Ipson said...

I can't start fantazicing about what my five things would be...I'm still thinking about the fudge samples!

See Mom Smile said...

I sooo wish I could live on less sleep too. But unless I get my 10-12 hours I am no good to anyone ;)


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