Friday, April 29, 2011

lost in transmission

I delete most of the stuff I write here on this blog. There are almost always so many things that I'd really like to say about the real world on the other side of this screen, but I just can't.

The blogger's equivalent to biting one's tongue, I imagine, is sitting on your typing fingers.

I'm a lousy typist, too.

Because I started writing for news copy, back in the day when we used manual typewriters and carbon paper (see? I just deleted a rather lengthy parenthetical comment about working in journalism back in the days of my youth. I hate myself.), and nearly all of us used the very manly technique of two-finger typing.

I look at the keyboard, too.

Don't judge me.

And, for the love of God, don't watch me type.

But there are like three things that involve writing and related stuff that I'm DYING to say, if nothing else for the pure shock value of saying them, but if I can't see my listeners' faces when I say them, all the fun -- like watching me type -- is wasted in the ethereal void of the internet.

So there.


So I am going to be at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books tomorrow. I'll be on the YA Stage at 11:00 and again at 5:00. In the 11:00 gig, I'll be talking about something that relates to The Marbury Lens, because the topic for the panel I'm on is "Brave New Worlds: Writing the Unreal."

Whenever I do these things, like an athlete preparing for... um... an athlete-y thing... or whatever... I try to "pump myself up." I know... it's a little-known secret about what writers do when we're not all sitting-around-on-stage-and-being-clever-y. I try to anticipate the questions the moderator, or possibly other panelists, will fire at me.

And sometimes, like when I'm in my car, and driving (which is not nearly as creepy as just sitting in my car alone, sitting there, sitting... sitting... talking to myself), I'll actually "rehearse" my canned witticisms that I contrive in anticipation of the questions I expect to be asked.

Yes. This is a deep secret -- kind of like how they pick popes and what John Roberts wears under his robe -- that only us writers know about. And here I am, graciously sharing it with you.

So, I've come up with a list of questions that I "feel" in my frenzy of two-fingered pumping up are going to be asked of me tomorrow.

And this is how I work out.

1. I understand you look at the keyboard when you type. Are you an idiot?

2. As far as the use of social media such as Twitter and Facebook are concerned... wait. I just realized that only douchebags ask questions that begin with the invocation of Twitter, Facebook, and the term "social media." Never mind.

3. Tell me about your pets, and if it's still dark when you wake up.

4. I'm going to say some words: Elf. Dwarf. Dragon. Faerie. Vampire. Angel. What do you suppose will be the next must-have Happy Meal toy for aspiring writers of Young Adult Fiction?

5. I don't really care about you at all, but could you please introduce me to your editor? How about your agent? Who are you again -- and what did you write?


I'm pumped.

And ready.