Friday, October 09, 2009

The Honest Scrap Award

Courtney honored me with this award. It's another one that requires me to tell you ten things about myself you may not know. This blog has been on-going for 3+ years. Is there really anything, at this point, you don't know about me (I mean, that I'm willing to share with others)? Oh, I suppose there is. Let's give it a shot. Here are the rules:

1. “The Honest Scrap” award must be shared.
2. The recipient has to tell 10 true things about themselves that no one else knows.
3. The recipient has to pass along the award to 10 more bloggers.
4. Those 10 bloggers all have to be notified they have been given this award.
5. Those 10 bloggers should link back to the blog that awarded them.

I'm having trouble with #2, as I always do. Things no one else knows? That means things that involve no one but me and that I've never told a soul, right? That's pretty impossible. Thus, I'm sticking with the standard, "Things that my 15 or so blog visitors per day may not yet know about me."

1. Courtney told me I could steal this one, so I am: I miss my old friends (all of them. Facebook isn't the same as getting together, is it?). I especially miss that gang in CT each month when they get together for the mystery book discussion group. I also miss friends from my old company. I miss Bob's and my friends from his seminary days. And I miss the friends I hung out with when I first moved to CT, and I miss my college friends. However, want to know something else? If I were to move away from here tomorrow, I'd miss the friends I've got now. I'm just like that, which is why, when asked in Facebook memes, "Missing someone?" my answer, inevitably, is "Always."

2. I don't think of myself as being stubborn, but I guess I am. The other day, one of my series editors made the mistake of saying to me, when I suggested an author for a particular book in our series, "Lots of luck getting her. I tried. She's always working on 'her own stuff.'" The minute I heard that, the thought bubble above my head read, "We'll see about that. I'm sure I can get her," which has been, I realize, my reaction every. single. time. someone has said to me "lotsa luck" when it comes to securing an author I want. Fifteen years in the profession, and I can only think of five authors I did not manage to get when told I couldn't (one of them died after expressing sincere interest and sending me a proposal, so he doesn't really count, does

3. I am a Mac person. I hate PCs. I will be expanding on this point in a blog post soon (stay tuned!) now that I am forced, yet again, to use a PC for work.

4. I will always and forever be amazed by the way others view me as compared to how I view myself. I often marvel at how I've managed to "fool" people (apparently, consistently and for years at a time). Who the hell is this person that others describe as energetic, hard-working, organized, charming, enthusiastic, intimidating, and smart? It can't possibly be this up-tight, shy, lazy, tongue-tied, belligerent, insecure, and frantic idiot I happen to know.

5. Speaking of idiots, I am my family's idiot. Really. I sit around with them, when they're all talking, and I might as well have drool dribbling down onto my chin. I keep quiet and hope they don't notice that, half the time, I have no idea what they're all going on about. (Of course, now they're all going to read this and start testing me or something.)

6. If I could have one truly amazing talent, it would be to be an excellent figure skater. I have loved figure skating all my life. Unfortunately, instead of being a Michelle-Kwan-sort, I'm the sort who puts on a pair of ice skates, decides to skate as fast as she can, falls and breaks her wrist, and has to have surgery, along with months of physical therapy.

7. Everyone knows I hate to talk on the phone, but, for some reason, I keep accepting jobs that require me to talk on the phone A LOT! And yet, for some mysterious reason, I really like these jobs, and I absolutely love meeting authors for the first time by phone. I tend to end up wanting to meet each and every one in person after that first phone conversation.

8. I am having a very hard time trying to come up with 3 more things.

9. Oh, here's something: I think Mariano Rivera is one of the most beautiful men on the planet. Those eyelashes! And those eyes! And the way he holds that gorgeous mouth of his. Oh, and then there is the beauty of the way he pitches a baseball (secondary stuff, of course). And if you think Bob doesn't know this, you are dead wrong. (One of the things that makes that "no one knows" stipulation so difficult is that it would be impossible to come up with ten things Bob doesn't know.)

10. And that one reminded me of another baseball thing (I guess it's playoff season or something): Jorge Sosa (when he was playing for the Tampa Bay Blue Devils) once threw a baseball to me (note: I did not say, "...threw a baseball." I said, "...threw a baseball to me." There is a difference), and I actually caught it. I've been meaning for ages to write a blog post about this (I've even got a picture to go with the blog post, somewhere, I think). Anyone want to hear the full story?

11. And wouldn't you know it? Now I've thought of an 11th (and it's really good). I once edited a book written by a guy in prison. I never spoke to him, just to his lawyer, his mother, and the two co-authors on his book. I had no idea why he was in prison and never asked. He kept trying to get my home phone number, telling me he could only call collect from prison, and our company would not accept collect calls, but I wasn't about to give a guy in prison my home phone number. Eventually, he was released from prison. Now able to make direct calls, he called me to thank me for what I'd done for him, and I never heard from him again. About a year or so later, he killed the woman he was living with (a librarian, no less), raped her 14-year-old daughter, and was a "Wanted Man," on the run, for about 48 hours or so before the police caught up with him. Need I say I was terrified until they caught him?

Well, I made it to ten + 1, but it wasn't easy. Can you? If so, let's hear them. (I'm not going to bother with that whole tagging ten people thing -- I mean, linking and notifying? That's just way too much work -- but you are to know that if I read your blog, I'm giving you this award and dying for you to take it and run with it.)


Nigel Patel said...

I do like a Mac but I don't know how I'm supposed to right click with one.

Emily Barton said...

Nigel, on a Mac, you right click by holding down the "control" key and clicking. (Took me quite a while to figure that out, and I'm thrilled to be able to impart that knowledge to someone else).

Dorothy W. said...

#11 is really creepy. What a dangerous job you have! :) Actually, now that I think about it, I have had students who have been in jail ... my job probably does have an element of danger in it.

I wonder if talking on the phone with people you don't normally interact with in other ways is an entirely different thing than talking on the phone with face-to-face friends?

litlove said...

Woah - that last one is scary! I always fancied teaching in a prison, thinking that I could make myself a network of contacts who could do all kinds of 'jobs' for me afterwards. I can see this was a utopian thought, and they'd be more likely to murder me. Oh and I don't much like talking on the phone either. At least, not chitchat, which is different from working something out with a person you don't know very well, the phone thus lending some useful distance to the situation.

Stefanie said...

You're a Mac person too? I had no idea but should have suspected. I always wonder how I have "fooled" so many people too because how they see me is totally different than how I see myself. I do, however, know that I am stubborn. it rund in my family and we tend to be rather proud of it. Obviously I had fun reading your answers!

Emily Barton said...

Dorr, ooo, teaching former prisoners. THAT's great fodder for stories (feed them to Hobs. Oh, wait a minute, he doesn't seem to need fodder. Feed them to me!). And the phone thing is an interesting question. You know, I think the problem with talking to friends is two-fold for me: 1. I'd really much rather see them in person and 2. I want to have lots of time to talk to them, which often I don't unless we get together in person. Professional phone calls tend to be fifteen minutes or so, tops.

Litlove, my fantasy ran more along the lines of helping this poor person in prison write and publish his book (which seems to lead to the same result as your fantasy. And, yes, "useful distance to a situation" is often key in my professional life (which is why telecommuting is so often such a good thing).

Stef, oh yes, a Mac person all the way. That blog post keeps pushing itself to the front of my brain, throwing out sentences at me, so expect it soon. Maybe we should start a "Fools Club" together? :-)!

Heather said...

#10 - yes! I definitely want to see the picture and read the story!

#11 - I was terrified just reading that.

Emily Barton said...

Heather, okay. I will have to see if I can dig up that picture and write the story.

And let #11 be my little Halloween gift to you then.