I’m lazy today. I’m in editing hell for the newsletter I do every month, I feel the pressure to get this novel written, the thesis has been languishing for two weeks now, I had an article due today, and I’ve got amendments to write for my chapter’s by-laws (the meeting is Saturday). Oh, and I’m leading my reading group in discussing To The Lighthouse in two weeks. So much as I might wish I could write an intelligent and original blog post, it ain’t gonna happen.

So please see Miss Snark on Word Counts:

When you submit your work to an agent, and you need to indicate word count, click the little button on your word processing program that says “word count” and use that number. That’s it. Do NOT start counting up pages and multiplying by 25o. Do NOT start obsessing about whether Times New Roman font is bigger/smaller than another font and thus can’t adhere to the “250 rule”.

I’ve been using computer word count forever now, but I still get these questions from friends/fellow writers and we end up discussing it again and again. One friend strongly believes that her 420 page TNR 12 pt manuscript is 100,000 words. But since she’s got the chapters in individual files, she hasn’t added them up. Now, since I’ve got a 286 pg TNR 12 pt that has 90,000 by computer count, I’m guessing she’s over just a bit. 🙂

Another post worth reading is here.

Bookstores should be a place of debate—learning—where the books on fascism can sit side by side with Marxist socialism and invite discussion. Where Right and Left can come to find the words written by not only those they agree with but those who differ in their opinions (if only to arm themselves against what “the enemy” is saying). If I claim to be for Free Speech then I have to be for all speech, even if I don’t agree because as I bookseller I’m not selling books to myself, but to the customer.

I have to agree, even if I think that shelving that particularly strident and annoying woman in the Kook section is accurate (this is a non-political blog, so you’ll have to go over there to find out who’s a Kook–er, who’s shelved there I mean). 🙂 But that’s just me. I do see Bookseller Chick’s point however. Just because the bookstore in question thinks she’s a kook doesn’t give them the right to foist that opinion on the customer.

OTOH, I own a copy of Mein K*mpf (you can’t get much kookier, in my opinion–and I decided I don’t want the hits for that particular search phrase). Not because I agree with a single word in it, but because I have a minor in history and actually read it for a paper. And I bought it while in Germany, where it’s banned. Since I had an American military address, Amazon.com could ship it to me. If I’d had strictly a German address, no dice. I’m not sure if that appalls me or not. It is a really awful book. I felt somewhat illicit possessing it, going so far as to turn the spine toward the back of the bookcase (red letters on mustard yellow background really stand out) so none of my German friends would know I had it.

Then again, if I had a copy of The Joy of Sex lying around, I suppose I’d hide it when the priest came for a visit. Nah, probably not. 😉 He’s a pretty cool priest (attention: gratuitous flattery alert! I don’t want him abandoning me during the Bananas Foster preparation tonight).