April 21, 2011 at 7:24 am
This is not a riddle. Well, I suppose it could be a riddle, but I’m asking it as an honest question. What name can be spelled only one way? I need to know because of Starbucks. Yes, Starbucks.
I circulate among several coffee shops in the Chapel Hill area to do my freelance work because I don’t want to get sick of any one place or any one background soundtrack. I sometimes visit the Starbucks and they always ask your name so they can write it on your cup in thick black permanent marker. One of the few constants in my thirty-plus years on this Earth is that no one ever knows how to spell my name. I like my name, (great job Mom and Dad!) but I spell it a bit oddly (not so great job, Mom and Dad!). Misspellings used to annoy me all through high school, but by the time I reached college I either chilled out about it or admitted defeat and let it go. My linguistics teacher always said spelling doesn’t [...]
September 17, 2010 at 8:10 am
The UPS man handed me a typical UPS shipping box last week with a surprise inside—the copyedited manuscript for my upcoming book, CHOCOLATE & VICODIN (in stores February 2011)!
It is certainly thrilling to see my book printed on paper and adorned with a cover letter on official publishing-house stationery. It makes me realize that the Word document I’ve slaved over for so long is soon going to put on its best clothes for its coming-out party at bookstores. However, it also means I have to review the copyediting, which is by far my least favorite part of the publishing process. I am not detail-oriented by nature, and copyediting is all about details. I’ve trained myself to be more detail-oriented in my work because it’s a necessary skill, but it’s definitely something I have to work at. It doesn’t come as naturally to me as other things.
By the time you get to copyediting, you’ve already submitted your manuscript and completed any revisions requested by your editor. The book is then printed, double-spaced, and given to a [...]
February 18, 2009 at 7:36 am
I first heard the song as I was driving to or from no place important. When Mike Doughty sang, “I went to school with 27 Jennifers, 16 Jens, 10 Jennys,” I felt a connection, like two Lego blocks snapping together, because I too went to school with at least 27 Jennifers, 16 Jens, 10 Jennys. In my birth year of 1980, the most popular girl’s name in America was “Jennifer.” You couldn’t avoid a Jennifer without bumping into a Sara(h) or an Amanda first.
This was a problem because for the better half of the 80′s I went by the nickname “Jenny” (or Jenny Sue if you went far enough south). There was always another Jenny in the class. There are few things that can make you feel less like the special little snowflake you are than to sit in a classroom with three other girls who have the same name as you. To differentiate between us, teachers and classmates would use our last initials, so I became Jenny F.
Jenny EFF. It’s so harsh. Not cute [...]