Ever have one of those days when you drag yourself out of bed and just know it’s going to be one of those days? A day when you have a list as long as your arm of things you’d like to accomplish? And you know when you crawl back into bed that night, the list isn’t going to be a whole lot shorter than when you started working on it?
Today has some serious potential to turn into one of those days…
So much potential, in fact, that I’m not even sure I’m going to start working on that list.
I probably will though. It’s just a matter of time before my brain accepts the fact that it’s not going to get anymore sleep, but right now it just wants to get up close and personal with my pillow…and stay there awhile. Maybe until tomorrow morning.
So now it’s several hours later. I somehow managed to not go back to bed. In fact, I managed to make it to the pool, do my compete workout, in addition to adding a couple more exercises, and made a quick trip to the store for a few things I really needed at home. No, I didn’t get done as much as I’d have liked, but I didn’t completely wimp out either.
Still I know I’m too tired to do anything important, such as editing. Not that I didn’t consider giving it a go, but I’m smart enough to know that I don’t enjoy that job-and I certainly don’t want to do it twice! Definitely want to be wide awake when I’m doing that.
While debating whether I should or not, I remembered something interesting I learned in my junior high school writing class. I don’t know why I thought of it right then. It’s just the way my mind works sometimes.
I seriously thought the teacher was nuts when she instructed each student in the class to walk up to the blackboard, one at a time, and write a word that could be used in place of the word, ‘said.’ And no one could use a word that had already been written.
Each one of us went up a few times and that board was filled with dozens upon dozens of ‘said substitutes.’
I suppose what brought it to mind is that, while rearranging my office this past weekend, I had to empty my file cabinet before it could be moved. And I saw the folder of my lists.
Yes, I have 4 1/2 pages (4 columns each) of alternate words for said. A very long, handwritten, alphabetized list that I wrote years ago. I’d forgotten I even had it. And don’t even know if I’ll ever use it again. I mean, Google is just so convenient! But I will hold onto it because it brings back some pretty nice memories.
I’d say that it brings back some not so nice memories, too, but you know what? Even writing my stories using a pen and notebook, then later on a typewriter, it was still a lot of fun. Maybe not the methods so much, but the creation of them was something I’ve always loved. And obviously still do.
So a note to you writers out there. Make your own list. Even if you never use it, it will make you aware of all the possibilities. It will also help you to avoid being repetitive in your writing. I mean, really, how many times can you use ‘said’ in your manuscript?
A lot if you’re not careful. So try to come up with at least one hundred substitutes. Sound overwhelming and impossible? Trust me, it’s not. Use an online thesaurus to help if you need to have your memory jogged.
***Just re-reading today’s blog to check for errors, I see that ‘lists’ seemed to be a theme for the day. I’d forgotten that I mentioned one when I started this earlier this morning.