All over the (writing) map…thank you, French press coffee!

November 28, 2010 § 10 Comments

(photo of napkin ring used at Thanksgiving table. … because at this time of year, I get all lodge-y and cabin-y and haul out things like our Hudson Bay blanket and LL Bean bomber hats and I especially adore Christmas decorations that have to do with bears and deer (esp “rein” ones),  and love chunky candles and crackling fires in the fireplace…I miss the Adirondack and Green mountain roads I grew up on, but HM indulges me with forays into the Missouri countryside as we hunt for that perfect country store…yesterday it was Three French Hens, which is gorgeous, but it is a long way from “country!”)

When I lived in Maine, I had moose insurance on my car. Probably a good thing. I drove a VW beetle at that time. (yes, um, that was quite some time ago.) I didn’t know HM yet, but he was there, cruising up and down the east coast from Maine to Maryland, playing rock music with his band at the time.

Are we writing today?
Oh yeah. Working on an article. Wrote for 90 minutes. Nearly organized and ready to “take off” on it, but as many know, writing needs moving around, letting things come together (or fall apart!) and waiting for the title to shake out, even the structure (tho’ I think I have that.)

And then…and then I get to finish a journal and start a new one! Rewards work for me. Deadlines, and rewards. Ah, but getting to choose a “new” journal from the shelf, be it 99 cent notebook that was on sale or a gift from someone that knows I can never have too many journals…this choosing is a delight. (It also means I’ll “cheat” on the last few pages of the one I’m about to finish, and may write larger or glue some pictures in there or make lists…)

Book “Rec”:
(Please note that we tend to abbreviate things in this family, partly for the challenge of knowing what the other is talking about, and partly to make the others laugh. Anyway, Book Rec should not be confused with Book Wreck. Rec is for Recommendation while Book Wreck, tho’ I’ve not used it yet, not wishing to do negative reviews, would be rather obvious I guess, to describe a book that just wasn’t working out.) 


GRAMMAR GIRL’S QUICK AND DIRTY TIPS FOR BETTER WRITING by Mignon Fogarty
This one is fun and makes certain rules we trip over far easier to remember. Actually, I enjoy her podcasts even more, but the book is far more portable. Aside from the compelling title, this is a helpful little tome and a decent companion, especially when you’re adrift (stalled on paper) and need a little something of writerly, albeit somewhat academic, interest.
But there’s the rub; this isn’t hardcore erudition as Strunk and White can seem. This is grammar here and now and not at all dull. Can’t imagine, however, that they would allow this in the school system, just because of the title.

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§ 10 Responses to All over the (writing) map…thank you, French press coffee!

  • Richard says:

    So, HM was a rock and roller? Funny, me too! I am still a child this time of year- never did attend many classes between Thanksgiving and New Years. I bet you like the aroma of mulling spices in your home as well?
    Keep putting us in the holiday mood. Can’t wait to see your next posts!

  • ds says:

    Goodness me, you really are a D—d Yankee! (Welcome to the club, though I cannot claim New England, except by extensions too complicated to chart here). Hope the article “shakes out” the way you wish it to.

    I think there is definitely a story somewhere between moose insurance and HM cruising the East Coast with his band. You may have to devote several journals to it 😉

    Loved this–thanks!

  • shoreacres says:

    You and your moose insurance! I’ve just spent fifteen minutes learning all about deer insurance. We don’t have moose but we have deer aplenty, and they can be killers, in every sense of the word.

    I was amazed to find Texas #9 on the list of deer collisions. Pennsylvania’s number one, with Michigan, Virginia, Minnsota and others ahead of us. Oh, and Illinois is Number 3. Who knew?

    I do like the looks of grammar girl, and may explore. I’ve found myself spending more and more time asking Uncle Google questions like “farther or further”? Part of this is due to having a reader or two who are perfectly willing to email and say, “By the way, the correct spelling is….” And so on. I certainly am paying more attention because of it.

    As for the schools – you’d be horrified at some of the things they’re allowing these days. My personal (non)favorite is Oregon allowing spell-check on writing assessment checks. But I’m weird about things like that.

    Happy post-holiday week! Here comes the next one!

  • mandy says:

    The cold weather basically demands a fire, a comfy lodge-y feeling (and maybe a cup of hot cocoa). I can’t imagine having to dodge a moose on the road. I’m well versed in dodging deer but they still scare the bejesus out of me. Moose are just so much bigger.

  • litlove says:

    Moose insurance made me laugh! And I love starting a new journal too. I’m really hoping I might get sent another for Christmas from my husband or son. They’ve been good at providing them up until now! Good luck with the article – I am sure you will do it splendidly.

  • bronxboy55 says:

    I know exactly what you’re missing. For me it’s the Bear Mountain Inn, not far from West Point, NY, and really the entire Hudson Valley, as well as southwestern Massachusetts and northeastern Connecticut. Some things just can’t be replicated elsewhere. We’ve been in Canada for twelve years and just saw our first (live) moose last year. Now I understand the need for insurance.

    Great blog. I look forward to reading more!

  • jeanie says:

    Moose insurance? Who knew! I love this post, what it tells me about you, and how I see you on the way to the quaint store, picking out your journal, and writing! And I MUST get that book — thanks for the rec!

  • oh says:

    Richard – yes! mulling spices! (actually, enjoy them throughout the winter season – makes house “warm” and scent-a-rific!.

    DS – you made me LOL – yes, I am a d****ed Yankee! Can’t seem to shake it, but it “goes” well with life here in the Midwest. Really, one day over a cup or 2 or 3 of coffee (or glass of wine), I would be delighted to hear of your east coast connection, too!

    Shoreacres – wow, never thought about the deer (and antelope?) roaming there in Texas esp to extent you mention about collisions! I wonder what you’ll think of Grammar Girl ( she kinda puts the fun into the whole thing though she’s pretty well grounded, not silly). And, BTW, very glad to hear you’re thinking of writing fiction, too!

    Mandy – Bet you’re all decorated there – Nor and I are working on it but are gettin git done in bits and pieces. Wouldn’t it be fun to all have some mulled something or other together and talk books and travel (and shopping?)

    LL – Think they’ll give us journals this year, secure in the fact that we adore them OR will they think it’s too overdone? Yipes, must talk it up a bit. Happy HOlidays to you and yours!

    Bronxboy – Thanks for stopping by! Ah, yes, the Hudson River valley and we know well the places you mention- and the valley is gorgeous summer and winter. You are however in a beautiful country as well – and such skiing!

    Jeanie – Don’t you love shopping that doesn’t have a schedule or a reason? I guess that’s really more like browsing, but it seems extra special at Holiday time, doesn’t it?

  • Arti says:

    Glad to hear about your Hudson Bay blanket… keep it well, hope it won’t turn into just a memorabilia one day. Several of our Canadian dept. stores have all but disappeared, like Woodwards and Eaton’s. The Bay is the only one left.

    And BTW, do they still teach grammar in schools?

  • Becca says:

    That grammar book sounds like just the ticket to make grammar fun – maybe they SHOULD use it in school!

    And I’d better put that on my Christmas list – Lord knows, I’m no grammarian!

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