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A Writer’s Twelve Days of Christmas

On the first day of Christmas, my karma brought to me:

A manuscript in a mad tangle

I’m grateful to have a complete first draft. Really. But the tangle starts on page 2.

Two hackneyed plots

It’s not that I’m a plagiarist. It’s just that my memory gland is too strong for my imaginary gland.

Three foreign phrases

I don’t use them myself. So where are my characters getting them?

Four dimpled darlings

Such adorable turns of phrase! Why do my readers get that gag-me-with-a-Smurf expression?

Five false starts

Once, you got a litter of crumpled paper on the floor, signifying writerly despair. Now it’s just delete…delete…delete….

Six friends kibitzing

I rely on their advice. And there’s so much of it! But I like to share my toys.

Seven cocktails calling

My protagonist knocks back Scotch. F. Scott Fitzgerald was drunk more than he was sober. Why do I have to stick to coffee?

Eight deadlines looming

I should be so lucky.

Nine unanswered queries

See above.

Ten howlers howling

Last week I left the same corpse in two places at once.

Eleven critics carping

See Eight and Nine above.

Twelve distractions dithering

E.g., Christmas. Happy holidays, all!

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