Hello, Failure

Of all the enemies of literature, success is the most insidious

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

Failure of the Day: Potatoes, which I never actually get around to writing about, but believe me, today’s failure is indeed potatoes.

I’m on day two without decongestants although I’m still pretty dependent on cough syrup, Tylenol, and albuterol. It really seems like a gyp. This cold is lasting exactly as long as my colds used to last when I smoked. Where’s the value added?

I’ve got kind of a very verbal thing going today. As an unintentional xmas bonus (as opposed to the intentional and very generous Amex gift cheque), my client sent me the most delightful book to edit this week--a collection of blog entries (I recognize at least one entry from This American Life, which makes it less an actual blog entry than a polished essay published to the Web) it is a complete pleasure to read.

Plus I am under strict orders not to correct the grammar or spelling: it turns out they are paying me to look for space-hyphen-hyphen-space ( -- ) and convert it to an en-dash (—). Also, I am to turn straight quotation marks and apostrophes (" ' ' ") into curly quotation marks and apostrophes (“ ‘ ’ ”). And that is today’s lesson into copy editordom.

There’s more going on…but maybe I’ll get into it tomorrow.


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