A Small, Blackened Volcano

Did I mention last time that one problem with my manuscript (love that word) is that it was close to being too fat to fit into its cover? At least that’s what the iUniverse woman said; I find it hard to believe. But she told me about some guy who, because of its length, had to publish his book in two volumes. Well, I suppose that is just another way to spook some poor writer into buying more of their editing services. Not me, baby.

But I did decide to go through Grandmother Ruth’s entries and see what I could pare away. I admit there were a lot of “rain today”s and “It was a splendid sight”s that could be excised without any particular loss. So I spent the last few days doing some judicious slashing and burning so as to bring down the word count.

And I did manage to do that: 141,800 words down to 135,570. Why, that’s 6,230 unnecessary words outta there! Sounds great, right? Except when I brought up my computer’s calculator and did a little figuring, I discovered that all that effort, if you moved the decimals off to the left a couple of spaces, meant that, converting the figures to dollars and cents, out of $14.80 I would be saving 62 cents. Is that just sad or what?

But there are possibly greater tragedies in life. A couple of days ago as I was trudging upstairs, “which”s and “that”s awhirl in my head, I suddenly realized I was smelling some heavy-duty smoke. “Something’s on fire!” I screamed to Richard, who was downstairs blithely doing something that apparently didn’t require his nostrils. Rushing down, I discovered the kitchen in a cloud of white smoke which turned into billowing white smoke when he opened the microwave.

“What is it?!” I yelled, seeing what appeared to be a small, blackened volcano on the turntable. “Shortcake,” he said. Shortcake? The shortcake we’d bought at ZenFest and had frozen? Well, yes; apparently he’d decided to defrost some for a little treat and slipped a 3/4″-high wedge into the ‘wave.

Unfortunately, being the defrosting neophyte that he is, he’d set the microwave on for two minutes on High. To defrost a flat foodstuff made basically of sugar and butter?? Oh dear. The house was so filled with choking smoke and this strange burning odor that we opened all the windows and went for a half-hour walk. At least we could breathe somewhat once we got back. But it did make me wonder why the smoke alarm didn’t go off. Wouldn’t that have been exciting? Firetruck rushing to the scene of a small volcanic wedge of shortcake.

So, tragedy was averted; the house didn’t burn down. But my MOTB dress has yet to arrive. According to the shipper’s tracking info, it left Suzhou, China, yesterday and is due to arrive in ten to fifteen days. What, by Chinese junk?


About Holly J. Pierce

You thought vacationing with small children was hard? Try traveling with your two daughters in their 20's, yet be glad that you have your peace-mongering husband along. Put it all together with your own laser vision of an epic journey and you have the basis for my book. Will I ever see it published? Will those self-published volumes ever move out of the garage? We'll see, won't we.
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One Response to A Small, Blackened Volcano

  1. Nancy Johnson says:

    Can’t wait for mother of the bride dress to arrive! On to the rehearsal dinner. Will there be one? What will you were to that?!
    Poor Richard and the microwave! At least you got out for a walk…

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