Saturday, May 19, 2007

Saturday Liveblogging, Part III

If David Attenborough were filming me for a documentary about the children's book editor in her natural habitat, the last two hours would have been rather more entertaining than the first. I put away books. I packaged manuscripts and took them down to the mailroom. (The new carpet is looking very nice.) I wrote a reject letter. I cleared off some projects that had been sitting on my IN chair for some time. I have not been doing anything very important or essential; but it's the little things that make one have a slightly clearer head, so the big things can then be tackled with more energy and hope. On Monday.

I found a Post-It that I used to have stuck to my computer monitor and stuck it back on. It said simply "Waldeinkamseit -- forest solitude" -- a beautiful German word for a lovely feeling.

Other things on top of or attached to my computer monitor:

  • A Chinese good-luck cat giving me the "CAT POWER!" sign
  • A McDonald's toy of a hippie bus (from the movie "Cars") that Lisa Yee sent me
  • A small silver U-shaped vase
  • A picture of the Tooth Fairy drawn by Ross Collins

And a series of Post-Its:

  • Success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm. -- Winston Churchill
  • My courage always rises with every attempt to intimidate me.
  • DOES YOUR P&L HAVE A ROYALTY? [I always forget to add in the royalty in our P&L program and have to fix it]
  • i.e. -- That is, in other words; e.g. -- for example (no etc. @ end)
  • lie, lay, have lain; lay, laid, have laid. Lay takes an object.
  • (a note on a story to be written about meeting Death)

And another series of Post-Its stuck to the side noting books I want to read:

  • Mark Francisco Bozzuti-Jones [an author]
  • Blue Like Jazz: Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality
  • Two Eggs, Please by Betsy Levin and Sarah Weeks [Jill recommended this when I was thinking about picture books a few months ago]
  • Cross-X: A Turbulent, Triumphant Season with an Inner-City Debate Squad, by Joe Miller
  • Thy Kingdom Come by Randall Balmer

Rachel is now sitting in my office, in my reading chair, going over the copyedits for our spring 2008 book with Ross. The workmen have gone home.

And actually, Rachel and I have just decided to leave as well and go get pedicures. Red toenails, here I come.

Happy weekend, all!


  1. As an author, maybe I'm being a little sensitive. But do editors really call them reject letters? Because authors call them rejection letters. While they say basically the same thing, one sounds so much more comforting to the ear.

    "Cheryl sent me another rejection," is easier to deal with than "Cheryl thinks my manuscript is a reject."

    Although, I will admit, I have sent you a reject or two in the past.

    - Jay

  2. Sorry, Jay, we do call them "reject letters," at least in our office, or "rejects" for short, as well as "rejections." But I swear we are using the word as a verb rather than a noun! It's an abbreviation for "things to be rejected," not that the manuscripts themselves is a reject.

    I am sure this sounds awfully cold-hearted still, but you must remember -- as editors, we have to turn down 95 percent (at a minimum) of the projects we see. And that makes rejections a matter of fact for us, rather than of emotion -- though we always try to remember the author's emotions on the other end.

    Now I'm going to be self-conscious about using "reject" for the next week!

  3. It must be pedicure day. The Missouri Klein women had pedicures today. Wish you were with us. Mom would have paid for your toes!

  4. Blue Like Jazz is amazing, as is The Search for God Knows What. I read them in about two days each. Thanks for your insights. :)

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  6. hey Cheryl!I was just reading the poetry have a pretty good collection!oh and the "Its Voldemort Outside" is just BRILLIANT!Thanks for putting it there.Good work on the blog!

    ps-has Melissa changed her blog id?Penbitten isnt hasnt been opening since yesterday.

  7. A question -- how could this book -- be published legally?

    THE ALCHEMYST, by Michael Scott (Delacorte, $16.99,9780385733571 / 0385733577) "You may think you know the fate of Nicolas Flamel after reading Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, but Scott has a different view of the immortal magician and his wife, Perenelle. When the Flamels and the book they guard are found by an old enemy, twins Josh and Sophie are drawn into a deadly shadow realm where ancient gods still rule, and the fate of humanity is unsure. This inventive, surprising fantasy will delight you." --Rosemary Pugliese, Quail Ridge Books & Music, Raleigh, NC

  8. Well, Nicolas Flamel was a real (if legendary) historical figure, so there's nothing to stop anyone else from using him in their book. See for more.