Writing for pay, like doing anything for pay, is not a job for the squeamish. Squeamish, we are informed by a wonderful dictionary I have somewhere, means “exhibiting a prudish readiness to be nauseated.” Such prudish readiness is not a desirable quality for a person entering the marketplace. You want to do business in the marketplace and never be nauseated? Good luck, pal. That’s why you write here on WordPress, after all. Here on a blahg read by a small handful, nobody will ever randomly change your words in exchange for a check. On the other hand, no check for $250, or even $5, will ever be mailed to your home to pay for your single malt scotch. So get over it.
I mean, really, isn’t it churlish, childish and even a bit arbitrary to be upset when a sentence that you wrote:
It was always hard for me to understand how a man with my father’s many great qualities could be such an intractable asshole.
It was always hard for me to understand how a man my mother absolutely adored could be such an intractable asshole.
There is meaning, there are shades of meaning, and things that simply mean what they mean, if you know what I mean. I can easily understand that many people love other people who are intractable assholes. It may be another thing to recognize the lovable qualities myself, even as I also see the intractable asshole. But that, I suppose, is simply nuance. And nuance, as we all know…. fuck nuance. You want nuance or a check? Your choice, it’s a free country.
Cliches are another thing. Just because I avoid them like the plague doesn’t mean some editor will be able to resist quickly swapping in the familiar rather than yielding to the more precise description I’ve put together.
But I am a whiner by nature, as should be clear to anyone who has read even a couple of these posts. In fact, instead of writing my next pay day, a generous fee for not a lot of work, something I sat down to do, I am whinging here about how hard it is to see even the most innocent and well-meaning violence done to my inviolable prose.
Wee wee wee. Or as the editor might style it: oui, oui, oui.