Archive for November, 2010

No Title Yet

The book process continues. Most recently, I signed up for a service that reports royalties to the government. Only I didn’t have a definite title lined up, so I couldn’t get beyond setting up my account. I spend about half my time googling words and phrases and using an online thesaurus for any word or synonym that expresses the sense of my book. I’ve read through so many Wikipedia definitions that I’m learning all about things I never knew I wanted to know. Free association, one of my editors says. You can’t imagine the ridiculous titles I’ve come up with by free association. The best title to date has been Wipe Out, but when I reported that to a friend, she asked, “Is it about surfing?” Well, there’s surfing in it, but it’s about so much more than that. I meant the title Wipe Out as in a surfing phrase, but also as in “to destroy completely.” I wonder if the reader, picking up my book for the first time, will get that. Most recently, I’ve been making changes based on the suggestions of my editors. Editors are brilliant people. They see things I never would have even questioned. And they’re 95% right about everything. (I reserve the 5% right to refuse or refute.) During the manual changes to the manuscript, I’ve been doing my second to last read-through. After my final rewrite, I’ll read through it one more time again. It’s amazing to me that after fourteen or fifteen read-through, I still find parts that speak to me. I still like it and I’m not even completely sick of it. That blows my mind. I would think that after the first five times through, a half-dozen at best, I would want to stick a fork in my eye before I’d want to read it again.

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High Hopes For JB

Three cheers for Jerry Brown!  Pleased with the election outcome, I decided to google JB.  I was surprised to learn so much about him in just a short amount of time.  What a life he’s led.  Just the highlights: Brown, one of only four father/son governors ever in the US was born in 1938.  At age 72, he is the oldest and was also the youngest governor of California at age 36 in 1974.  He was exactly half his current age the first time he was elected.  No other “modern” California governor has served longer than Jerry Brown.  (I don’t know what they mean by “modern.”  It wasn’t clear.)  In 1990 California voters passed a law limiting governors to two four-year terms, but Brown’s prior service was not counted under the new law because he was elected and served before the law was passed.  Only Deukemejian could conceivably serve as much or more than Brown, being the only other living governor serving before the new limit law, if he were to run and win again.  It’s likely that Brown will always be the only “modern” California governor of more than eight years.  Before law school, JB went through a Jesuit seminary and actually took vows of poverty, chastity and obedience.  This was before Linda Ronstadt.  During his reign as governor, Brown appointed more women, Asians, Latinos and African Americans to high government positions than any other chief executive.  After being defeated by Pete Wilson in 1982, Brown led delegations to China and the Soviet Union, studied Spanish in Mexico, spent six months in Japan studying Japanese culture and Buddhist practice, worked with Mother Teresa in India and traveled to Bangladesh as a CARE ambassador of good will during the devastating floods of 1988.  While running for president in 1992, Jerry refused contributions of more than $100 and used an 800 number to raise funds.  Jerry Brown has been married once, to Anne Gust in 2005.  What a man.

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