things I love: a good fountain pen

A couple of weeks ago–actually, right before Christmas–the crappy purple Target-purchased fountain pen I was using on New Novel kicked the bucket. After I’d used it for maybe a week. To say that I was annoyed would be an understatement, but there were no refills to be found for the pen, so I moved on to a ballpoint.

After only a couple of days of writing, my hand was so terribly sore. That fountain pen was terrible, it’s true, but it also kept my hand moving freely over the page without having to exert much pressure at all, something the ballpoint just couldn’t do. I put a new fountain pen on my Christmas list, and didn’t think much about it, so when I got an awesome fountain pen kit–complete with four (4!) ink cartridges and a bottled ink converter and an honest-to-Pete bottle of ink I was so ridiculously excited. And, since this is not a crappy Target-bought fountain pen, it actually has a medium nub instead of a huge one. Which made my writing go from this:

old pen

To this:

new pen

Okay, so it probably doesn’t look that different. But trust me when I say that I no longer feel like I’m writing with a Crayon, and that my handwriting looks more like my handwriting with this new pen. I love it. And now I aim to go trawling the internet to find what bizarre ink colors I can purchase. In bottles. Just like Harry Potter. *easily amused*

things to do to make you hate yourself

Two days before Christmas Eve, query about an article submission that’s been languishing for a couple of months.

There’s probably not going to be good news. Nobody ever likes rejection. Editors don’t really like sending out rejections, either–or at least, I don’t. I’m just thankful I didn’t have to send this one.

My advice? Wait until January to query about submissions, and to send in new ones. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that we don’t get any email over Christmas. I’m probably going to lose that bet with myself.

things to do to make your editors hate you

After we politely decline your article, send it to us again a few months later, having cut away half the text, and leaving out the part where we sent you a form rejection the first time.

We’ll remember. I promise. And we really, really won’t like it, because we didn’t ask you to resend (we oftentimes do this if we feel that an article is close, but not quite ready) and we think you’re trying to pull a fast one on us.

It’s the “we think you’re trying to pull a fast one on us” part that really makes us huffy. So much so that we might blacklist you. You don’t want that. Don’t do this.

things I love: stars

star

I like stars a lot. I write about them a lot, too; my MFA thesis was titled “String Theory,” and it was even about that, a little bit. Mostly it was about plain old stars.

These star ornaments, however, are a favorite of mine because when I got married almost five years ago, we gave them out as favors. Only we bought way, way too many, so whenever we put up our Christmas tree, the last thing we do is dig into a ratty white plastic bag full of silver star ornaments, and cover every un-ornamented inch of the tree with them.

review: The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins

Ever since Mockingjay came out a few months ago, I’ve been hearing how amazing the whole trilogy is. And for the life of me, I can’t explain why I never even looked up the books to see what they were about. But I kept remembering that the series was out, and well-recommended, and so I finally decided just to look up the first book in my library catalog, to see where I could pick it up. To my surprise, out of the fifteen or so copies total in my county, there were only two available. This, more than anything, piqued my interest, and I put a hold on the book and picked it up.

I started reading it at about 10:00 at night on a Friday. I finished it at 3:30 a.m. I absolutely could not stop reading the book.

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why, hello, December!

You’re turning out to be rather swell.

I’ve been super busy with work lately, which is good, but I’m behind on a few posts. I’ll get them up later. In the meantime: I made a cardigan. It’s too big. I like it anyway.