None of the Above


I’m sure everyone has been watching the political debates and the news with analysis of the debates. It is impossible to escape all the reporting and debating and analysis. It is in your face every day if you watch any news agency at all. The local and national news agencies are following each candidate and showing us everything or most things they find newsworthy or of shock value. Trump never fails any reporter or rally with lots of ‘worthy’ observations and comments.

The worst part of all of this noise is that we will shortly have to vote for one of the ‘chosen’ from the two parties. Yes, I know there are more than two but control of the electoral college, a most outdated device, is solely under the two party system. Here in California, if you are listed as a Non-Partisan, you will not be allowed to vote for any candidate for president. I am not making that up. I had to re-register to be able to vote for a presidential candidate and during this re-registration, I was required to pick a party. Now I could have chosen the American Freedom Party and the other one I believe was Libertarian but I would refer you back to the electoral college for direction on party choice. As much as I was raised to be a Republican, it is most difficult this year to accept that idea.

Why, America, do we not have the ability to Vote For None Of The Above?? Why can we not send the parties back to their drawing boards (and billion dollar donors) to find a candidate we will vote for? It seems to be a most fundamental democratic right, doesn’t it? Why should someone like Madeline Albright tell us we must vote with our chromosomes or go to hell. (double XX sounds better than the alternative.) We all agree this country needs better leaders and not just a president but both houses, so why can’t we say None try again?

My battle-cry for decades has been: throw them out, never re-elect anyone, ever. Maybe it is time for this to become the battle-cry of all who feel our country needs better leaders. What do you think?







What I’ve Learned


The last of the edits came back from John Hudspith. I finished going through them and while I deeply admire and believe in my editor, there were some changes I’m still struggling with. He removed a rather visceral sentence I rather liked, got all up in my grill about a ‘frozen’ chicken and changed the ending just a bit. What to do?

I’m currently re-writing the first, oh ten or twelve chapters of LIGHTED WINDOWS because they are terrible. I didn’t know they were terrible until I learned what good work looks like. Now I have to weed out all my, gag, moments that don’t work and don’t move fast enough and so on. I am also working on not ending all my sentences with a preposition. It is my book for better or worse and I am the name on the cover so perhaps I will ignore some of the edits and maybe replace that wonderfully visceral ‘plop of gray matter’ just because I wrote it the way it happened.

But what I’ve learned most is no one, not even someone as wonderful and special as my editor, Dearest Johnny, can write your book. I agree with most of his corrections and up until this last bit I would have never argued. But now, I’m facing publication of this long overdue work and I sincerely want it to be my work, the way I saw it. There is, however, the matter of sales. This editor has about fifty indie authors, so his knowledge of what sells is deep and he made a wonderful change to the ending that I am using.

So, I’ve learned you never stop learning. There are hundreds of way to write any sentence and while they all may not be exactly right for any given story, it is the job of the writer to pick and choose among the many variations, the best way to say and not say what you want the reader to hear. Thank you, my Dearest John, for being an amazing person. You have made LIGHTED WINDOWS a book worth reading. I hope to continue learning with each book that follows.Lighted Windows2 (1)