Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Chapter 86: In Which I Discuss An Ancient Reading and Not-so-Ancient Editing

Currently listening to: "Pippi Longstocking is Coming Into Your Town" from The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking.

Yes, I have had a little wine. Inevitably puts me in a nostalgiac mood. The 1980s Pippi movie was awesome, even if the actress playing her was 17 years old. Closer to a nymphette than a moppet. What I love is how Swedish people HATE the American movie. Look up clips on Youtube. The comments are all a bunch of Swedes ranting about what a disgrace it is.

One of the first featured readings I ever did was October 22, 2008. The Space Inside Reading Series. At that point I was looking for venues to exercise my newfound interest in performance, and was sending out emails to people. Some of them even answered, despite my email address being Felicity4evr. Yep, same one I had when I was 14. Monica Jacobe, who ran the series, was super nice and accomodating, and all sorts of friends showed up. Writing group friends, College Park friends, Food Not Bombs friends, high school friends, my buddy off the Elfquest fanpage. It was a cramped bookstore with high shelves, the aisles so narrow you could barely walk. One of those magical kind of bookstores, the kind that smell of old paper. I had an armchair to sit in, Masterpiece Theatre-style, but I chose to stand. All in all, a good night.

Monica told me she read my work online and liked it, and that was why she brought me onboard even though I was a novice writer. At that point, I had two published stories. One was called "Flight," which was about a teenage girl who loses her virginity to a professional wrestler. The other was "Sacred Duty," about a teenage girl who loses her virginity to an old classmate. At Space Inside, I read an early draft of "Dead Teenagers"...

...which is about a teenage girl who nearly loses her virginity to a ghost.

Nobody said I wasn't consistent. At this point, I could probably publish Cherry Blossoms: A Collection of Teenage Girls Losing Their Virginity Stories by Elwin Cotman. Anyways, it was a lovely time, and I left with one solid conclusion.

Okay, two. One: I needed to write about new topics. Two: if I was going to do these readings, I'd need a book to sell. So that became the next project.

Speaking of the next project, we're currently editing the galleys for Hard Times Blues/Once Upon a Body. "Galley" is publishing-speak for the early manuscripts you send out for review. My heroic editor Nate has been working tirelessly to get our off-kilter fonts in .pdf format, even as he edits Dan McCloskey's book. "Revelation of John," my King James Bible-inspired prose poem, was the hardest for him. But the galley's complete. Yay! We just need a few more edits here and there. And we're on-schedule, which is even better. As I've said before, editing is a sucktastic process. It's boring, and tedious, and the more you do it the less you have to edit, which makes it even more tedious.

And speaking of edits, I'm editing my audiobook now. Mostly it involves deleting silent parts so the text goes faster. When recording, I'd take long pauses, thinking that's how you paced audiobooks. Then I started listening to some audiobooks. Those guys are going a mile a miinute. Nicol Williamson doing The Hobbit? You've never heard Gollum sound that manic. Less than a second between every utterance. It's actually refreshing to know these things have a faster speed. I certainly think it makes the story more engaging to listen to. So I've been editing, and I'll literally spend an hour on one section of "When the Law Come," just doing timing. Ugh. So tedious. But I'm hyped for the end product. I've always wanted to have a record. And here I am. Didn't even have to learn an instrument.

I think I'll go edit the audiobook right now. Where's that wine?...

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