Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Done! (Really!)

Now I'm really done. In a new record (I think -- at least since I broke out the stopwatch -- I logged 9 hours of work time yesterday. I read the entire book out loud. I don't know that I'd recommend that for the future, as I have next to no voice left and will have to remain almost entirely silent today so I can sing at choir rehearsal tomorrow. Normally I do the one-day read through and the read out loud as two different passes, so I don't try to read the whole thing out loud in one day. The one-day read-through is to approximate the reader experience. That's when things like pet words and phrases really pop out at you -- read it once in a day and it's not a problem, but five times in one day, and you cringe. That's also when continuity errors show up or when I notice that I made a similar joke in two different places in the book. Reading it straight through is a good way to see how the plot flows, and that's when I can force myself to admit that some of my "darlings" really have to go, that there are cute scenes that are actually kind of boring and annoying, and they have zero purpose in the plot. Meanwhile, reading aloud is a good way to catch typos, missing words and other errors, and it ensures that the sentences aren't too awkward. If I stumble over reading them out loud, then they might cause a mental glitch when reading silently, so they need to be fixed.

Now I just need to send it to my agent, if I can fix the current e-mail glitch (why does AT&T feel the need to keep changing e-mail settings overnight, without bothering to notify anyone, so you have to go to their help site and get the new server address in order to connect through a client? I can use web mail, but I have everything organized through Entourage).

And then I'm on vacation. Sort of. I still have to write my radio scripts for the week, and I think I'll go ahead and do two weeks for good measure so I don't have to worry about it next week and they can get a jump start on the holiday. Then I need to make a supply run. So I guess today is kind of a half day. Still, I hope to have the time to finish reading the book I've been reading for the past two weeks. I really like it, but it's not a book best enjoyed a paragraph or two at a time.

I may try to keep up the blog posting while I'm on "vacation," but my goal is to stay off the computer as much as possible. The way to get the benefits of a vacation while staying home is to really change your usual routine, and I spend most of the day on the computer, so to feel like I'm on vacation, I need to stay away from it. I've also tended to use unplanned goof-off time for playing on the computer, so that's a big reason I haven't felt I could justify a vacation in years.

Now, though, I logged more than enough hours to meet my vacation goal. I didn't get my house hotel clean, but at this point, I don't care. I just want a break. I'm hoping that after Thanksgiving I can try to establish some better work habits so I can maintain the steady work production without going insane.

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