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I’m too clean to edit erotic fiction

30 Aug


… or so say Ellora’s Cave. At least I think that’s what they say. I applied for a copy editing position for Ellora’s Cave – a site that publishes romance fiction and various forms of erotic fiction. As part of my application I was asked to fill in an extensive questionnaire and to submit a resume, and at that point I’d be sent a copy editing test to undertake.

Among the questions was my definitions of  romance, sensual romance, erotica and pornography (or something like that), and the types of books, online mags etc. I read. Clearly they were not what Ellora’s Cave were looking for.

Imagine my surprise when I received the following email:

Dear Ms. Hartog,

Thank you for your interest in the editing positions at Ellora’s Cave, and for taking the time to complete the application and send your resume. Unfortunately, based on those, we don’t currently feel we’re an appropriate match for your strengths. Perhaps our professional paths will cross again in the future.

I wish you the best of luck in finding compatible and fulfilling employment!

Call me crazy, but I think a good editor is a good editor, no matter the material. I had a job editing right wing Republican rants, something far more out of my comfort zone than erotic literature, and my ability to parse those sentences was not impeded by my non right-wing leanings.  And, I even let Ellora’s Cave know I had been a top rated runner up in a Mills & Boon (the non-American version of Harlequin Romance) short story competition.  And I reviewed my great creative writing teacher – Rachel Resnick’s latest book, Love Junkie. And that’s full of erotic unmentionables. Sheesh!  I can’t believe  they didn’t even let  me take the test!

And so, it appears, my paws just aren’t smutty enough to edit erotic fiction. I will now have to take my heaving bosom and my dirty gerunds and seek solace in the arms of a vibrant, chiseled editor at another company.


A very tall man looking for a very small child

30 Aug

Ah, the Interweb. The bane of my existence. Love it or loathe it, few of us can live without it, and I pretty much make my living on it. Writing, editing, researching, it’s all done on my MacBook, and thanks to brilliant techie geeks who somehow know how to get all this information to shoot across the universe. I’ve always been one of those people that doesn’t care how it works, as long as it does work.

So, when I found out that my D-Link router (that had served me faithfully for five years) wasn’t working and was no longer under warranty and I’d have to pay for advice to hook me back up to the world-wide spider web, I finally bit the bullet and attempted to hook up my Airport Express. Granted, I’d bought it about three months ago, but on the first try it wouldn’t work and I figured I’d just wait to try again.

a-woman-showing-frustration-at-her-computer-~-pgi0318Finally that day arrived (thank you D-Link non-free advice people), but still, despite my basic grasp of tech-dom I could not get the Airport Express to work. Now, I’m not a big swearer, but something about losing my link to the computerized world gets me in a terrible state and I find myself using and abusing all kinds of expletives (sorry Mum). I cursed the computer, Apple, Steve Jobs, my desk and anything within cursing range. And finally I called the Mac experts (God bless Apple Care – you should all invest).

And that’s when I met Russell (on the phone of course), and Russell went through all the motions  I went through and also couldn’t get it to work. This made me happy momentarily, because at least it meant I wasn’t being obtuse, if even Russell the mac guy couldn’t fix it. Of course, it meant I still had not Internet access, unless – heaven forfend! – I used an Ethernet cable. The horror of it!

And then, Russell suddenly said, “How far is your Airport Express base from your computer?” I said, “About a foot.” And he said, “Try moving your computer at least three or four feet away.” Which I did, and voila, it worked!

Then Russell, mac guru and apparently philosopher said gravely: “When setting this up, the base was just too close to the computer, so it couldn’t tell it was there. It’s like a very tall man looking around for a very small child and realizing that he’s standing at his feet but he’s looking all around instead of looking straight down.”

father-daughterI’d like you all to know that my very tall man and my very short child are now happily reunited and we’re back to living in Mac harmony. Thank you for today’s philosophy lesson, Russell. May you and  your Mac/philosophy skills go far.