I've lost my keys.
My, it takes a long time to look for something you can't find. Wasteful. Upsetting. Nerve-making. I'd say 'Think about it tomorrow,' but tomorrow comes very soon as I swim between 6 and 7 a.m. and I need my magic fob to open the electronically locked door to the pool. Other than that, how was my day? Lot of thinking, laundry, more thinking, bit of shopping, more thinking - and then I quit. I'll think tomorrow.
I finally started to clear my Paper Desk over the weekend, culling and filing, and stashing follow-ups on a to-do pile. I found some blog ideas, too, and here's a topic dear to my heart: Rules for Good Writing. I own (and read) a lot of books on grammar, style, principles and foibles, the latter being the personal preferences of well known writers. The idea is that nothing succeeds like success and as long as they keep selling books they can say anything they please, and they do. I was at a horrible gathering of editors - official, professional members of the Canadian Association of Editors or some such. My own editor at the time invited me to come, thinking that I might enjoy it. I did not. I was treated as an intransigent miscreant, perpetrator of egregious errors and lapses of taste, who must be gently but forcibly led to copy perfection, guided by one of these superior minds without whose corrections I would be a complete failure. I felt like a piece of meat. I was Exhibit A, the Writer, referred to in the third person as if I weren't there.
But see - A Famous Writer's idiosyncrasies were passed with indulgent smiles. They cited one we all know. Apparently Margaret Atwood used toward and towards indiscriminately and when called on it, said she made her choice depending on how it sounded in a sentence. The online authority says toward without the ess is just a variant of towards, which can be geographical. attitudinal or contributory. I pass. I don't always. I once fired a copy editor - twice actually, different editors, one with a book publisher and one with a magazine. Each of them had corrected copy of mine, substituting errors. Grrrr.
For ten years after I graduated with a Masters degree in English, I marked essays for my favourite college professor for pin money. I think the pay was 55 cents per essay and it was welcome. (Well, hey, a loaf of bread cost 9 cents a loaf then.) Those essays were the reason I never learned to watch hockey. I would sit and read my essays and Bill would sit in his chair facing the TV with the hockey on but without audio so we could be together. I know it sounds smarmy but it's true. That's not the point. I used a text book entitled Mastering Effective English. This is how I could justify my treatment of two copy editors. I'm a pretty good copy editor myself.
But I've lost my keys.