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Author Topic: The good morning, good night thread  (Read 590037 times)
desertwomble
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« Reply #1575 on: March 05, 2010, 06:48:38 AM »

I'm off to Nottingham this afternoon to spend the weekend with my girlfriend (it's her birthday).  And by a happy cowinky-dink my friend's roller derby team are having a fundraiser in one of Nott's best rock pubs tomorrow night!

Hey, Rev, Don't forget to tell everyone in Nottingham about 'Robin Hood and Friar Tuck: Zombie Killers - A Canterbury Tale by Paul A. Freeman'!

http://coscomentertainment.com/robinhoodzombies.html

DW Cheesy
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Rev. Austin
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« Reply #1576 on: March 05, 2010, 06:50:39 AM »

Oh you dirty whore hahahah maybe I'll get it printed on a t-shirt and be done with it  Wink
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desertwomble
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« Reply #1577 on: March 05, 2010, 11:33:47 AM »

Oh you dirty whore hahahah maybe I'll get it printed on a t-shirt and be done with it  Wink

You're the man, Rev!

DW bleh afro
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delph_ambi
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« Reply #1578 on: March 05, 2010, 12:12:24 PM »

I just gave a violin lesson, and my pupil presented me with a bag of Thornton's truffles. No particular reason, she just likes giving presents.

Wish all my pupils were like that...
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Ed
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« Reply #1579 on: March 06, 2010, 05:03:14 AM »

Cheered me up no end looking at the posts on this thread last night - I had a real thank god it's Friday feeling already, and it was nice to see so many new posts and a bit of banter going on here smiley

Woke up to the alarm at 6:30 this morning. It took me about half an hour to work out that it's Saturday and the alarm had been set erroneously. It was quite good, though, because the alarm woke me right after a nightmare, so it stayed fesh enough in my mind to think about it and extrapolate enough information and characters to get me started on an idea for a really scary novel afro
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Planning is an unnatural process - it is much more fun to do something.  The nicest thing about not planning is that failure comes as a complete surprise, rather than being preceded by a period of worry and depression. [Sir John Harvey-Jones]
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« Reply #1580 on: March 06, 2010, 06:06:31 AM »

I woke up from a dream in which Stephen King was dead and some of my work colleagues were sining songs around his grave    How weird is that? None of my work colleagues sing.

Yesterday was beautiful. Today is dull and cold and overcast. Nevertheless, I'm going out on my bike in a few minutes. Instead of doing my Saturday morning writing I spent this morning critting Rev's story. Great story, and I find that in the critting process a tremendous amount of value is added to my own knowledge about writing.

Hey ho. Time to go. Hope Mr King is well.

Derek
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"If you want to write, write it. That's the first rule. And send it in, and send it in to someone who can publish it or get it published. Don't send it to me. Don't show it to your spouse, or your significant other, or your parents, or somebody. They're not going to publish it."
 
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« Reply #1581 on: March 06, 2010, 06:58:15 AM »

Somebody pinched the sun. It's grey and cold, rats!

Got a question. If a submission call says the max word count is 10,000 is it okay to send in a story that's 150 words over that amount or is it the done thing to ask first?
I don't want to appear rude by ignoring the guidelines but I also don't want to waste an editors time by raising a trivial point.
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delph_ambi
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« Reply #1582 on: March 06, 2010, 08:14:15 AM »

I would absolutely categorically keep to under the stipulated word count, and definitely not ask permission to go over.
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Ed
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« Reply #1583 on: March 06, 2010, 08:52:11 AM »

Without a shadow of doubt, you can cut 150 words from a 10,000 word story with little to no impact. Try harder afro
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Planning is an unnatural process - it is much more fun to do something.  The nicest thing about not planning is that failure comes as a complete surprise, rather than being preceded by a period of worry and depression. [Sir John Harvey-Jones]
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« Reply #1584 on: March 06, 2010, 01:27:32 PM »

Thanks for the advice delph and Ed afro I've got 121 words to go. The story was 10,500 and the near four hundred I've already cut out were fairly easy to find, these last few are proving to be more elusive. Time to sharpen the axe I think. 
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« Reply #1585 on: March 06, 2010, 02:20:28 PM »

caz, publishers usually do not trust MS Word's counting algorithm. It's not based on the actual words in the document but on total characters divided by an assumed average word length. Consequently many publishers insist authors use the method of counting words in, say, three random lines, multiply by the number of lines per typical page then by the number of pages. If you do that five times you get five different answers. 150 words out of 10, 000 is neither here nor there. No one really knows how many words there are in a large document.

This is a useful page http://www.sfwa.org/2005/01/what-is-a-word/

If I have a piece to sub to  where a max word limit is, say, 10k and mine was 10,150 I'd tell them it was 9,990. They'd never know the difference!

Geoff
PS I was a fiction judge last year with over 200 entries max word length 2,500. The organiser used a different method than I did and we were often up to 20 words apart.
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Pharosian
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« Reply #1586 on: March 06, 2010, 03:20:13 PM »

caz, publishers usually do not trust MS Word's counting algorithm. It's not based on the actual words in the document but on total characters divided by an assumed average word length. Consequently many publishers insist authors use the method of counting words in, say, three random lines, multiply by the number of lines per typical page then by the number of pages. If you do that five times you get five different answers. 150 words out of 10, 000 is neither here nor there. No one really knows how many words there are in a large document.

This is a useful page http://www.sfwa.org/2005/01/what-is-a-word/

If I have a piece to sub to  where a max word limit is, say, 10k and mine was 10,150 I'd tell them it was 9,990. They'd never know the difference!

Geoff
PS I was a fiction judge last year with over 200 entries max word length 2,500. The organiser used a different method than I did and we were often up to 20 words apart.

I've been using MS Word for years, and one of the features I use most is the word count function. It most definitely uses the method attributed to "computers" in the SFWA article you referred to: anything separated by spaces around it is a word. It's a bit of a problem when it counts the *** between sections as a word. (Actually, they fixed a bug it used to have, counting a double hyphen -- between words as a separate word if it had a space on either side and counting word1--word2 as a single word. Now neither the em dash nor -- is counted, regardless of spaces.)

Also, I think it's very bad advice to suggest an author fudge the word count downward on the cover page and assume the editor won't notice. I'm currently working with the editor of an anthology (I'm doing the copy-editing), and we had an author tell us his 8378-word story was "approximately 7000" (the limit was 7500). We noticed. His entry was disqualified. I've seen several competitions state that they use the MS Word count. Maybe it's true that "No one really knows how many words there are in a large document," but if they standardize on MS Word's method, they're likely to DQ any entries that MS Word finds to have more than the limit.
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« Reply #1587 on: March 07, 2010, 06:40:30 AM »

Thanks for the info Geoff and Pharosian. afro I use 'Works' and on its word count I'm now down to 9,970. It's surprising how many words I found to cut out by breaking up long sentences into shorter ones and removing a lot of 'and, the, then' words. To me a lot of the passages sound better without all the excess baggage.
Editing is a trick I'm learning. If I read a story often enough I can see where it works and where it's dull. Couldn't have done that not so long ago. Now I'm learning to be ruthless, kill the darlings as I've heard said.   
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« Reply #1588 on: March 07, 2010, 06:44:07 AM »

I think self editing is the most difficult skill to learn, also the most important and hardest to master.
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« Reply #1589 on: March 07, 2010, 04:45:42 PM »

Pharo

I was being naughty. Nevertheless, for large documents of 10,000 words and more the algorithms word processors use will often give different results - often give or take 20 words. Certainly the manual word count methods will vary wildly. I'm not really saying cheat on the count, but that because the counts are innacurate a lower figure may well be correct.

I agree that if a competition or publisher insists on a particular method of count then that should be employed, and that MS Words is sufficiently accurate for small docs.

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