Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Must. Go. Make. Stuff. Up.

Today I have to take my own advice and just get my asp in the chair and open my manuscript.

Yesterday I was working on a freelance project that involved far too much of my left brain: reworking citations in an essay bound for an MIT Press anthology. This is dull work, closer to tweaking html code than writing—Chicago Style, MLA Style, Turabian Style, they all have their own weird little rules to follow and translating one to the other is tedious10. For me, this is the soul-sucking part of freelance writing.

Working on non-fiction projects, especially anything academic, always throws off my fiction writing for a while. After double checking each and every word or date to make sure it follows specific citation style rules, it feels a bit weird to sit down and write with no parameters. I can write a sentence without having to hit the “insert endnote” shortcut key? Really? I can just, you know, make stuff up?

The day before last it was over 80 degrees and yesterday five inches of snow fell on the newly mowed lawn. If the weather can move that quickly from one extreme to the other, why can’t I?

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