Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Web Site Up!

Ladieeeeees and Gentlemen! Announcing the resurrection of my web site! Go to Monica-Ferris.com for a look. Let me know what you think. I think it’s wonderful, attractive and easy to navigate around on. (I know, never use a preposition to end a sentence with. Which reminds me: Have you noticed how people don’t seem able to get their prepositions right anymore. Different than, instead of different from, for example. And everyone’s doing it, even speechmakers and broadcast performers. Another gripe: People don’t say fewer, they say less. “Less children were in school this morning,” instead of “Fewer children were in school this morning.” Don’t they know that if you can count them it’s “fewer,” and if you measure it, use “less”? So it’s less sand but fewer automobiles. What’s your favorite gripe about the state of our language?)

I was hoping to offer an elaborate and perhaps touching description of the Memorial Day ceremony at a local cemetery. I went to pick up a friend to go see it, and instead drove her back to our place in a driving rain with thunder and lightning, punctuated by hail. Not appropriate weather to sit outdoors and listen to Robert Robinson sing “Amazing Grace” in his deep, rich, warm baritone. A couple of years ago they had a troop of Civil War re-enactors fire a volley using period-style rifles. It was interesting, they didn’t sound like today’s weapons, more like “Shap!” than the modern “Crack!” And they vanished in a cloud of black powder smoke. I’d often heard of modern gunpowder being called “smokeless powder,” but that was a vivid demonstration of the original kind. I was hoping they’d come back and do it again this year. Oh, well. I did get some writing done.

After the storm blew through, the sun came out and it turned into a hot, muggy, very windy day, with temps in the upper eighties. Hard to believe just a couple of weeks ago we had frost warnings. It’s been a wild and crazy year for weather.

A Canadian friend is designing the pattern for And Then You Dye. It’s a set of nine vertical rectangles in a step shape. The middle one is lowest, and then four step up on either side. She has all kinds of ideas for how to fill the shapes, which we’re calling Template. What we’ll do is pick one pattern to use in the book, then show the others on my web site. In the book, we’re saying my sleuth, Betsy Devonshire, is holding a contest in which customers buy the template pattern and use their imaginations to fill it in. I’ve seen some of Alix’s ideas and they’re wonderful! I’m actually hoping my readers will come up with their own ideas to fill the rectangles and will send me pictures of their efforts. Of course, I’m also dreaming up ways the contest will complicate Betsy’s life.

I hope your Memorial Day was pleasantly memorable.


Julie said...

Oh, the state of the language! Homonyms: their, there, they're, pedal and peddle, and so on and so on. "Impactful" which is just stupid, and "concerning" as in "the stormy weather is concerning to homeowners." That doesn't even mean anything. And the use of that for who, as in "John was the person that came," instead of "the person who." If it's a person, it's who! The state of the language is becoming abysmal, isn't it?

Ellen said...

I had an editor correct my "person who came" to "person that came".

Then there is the Greengrocer's Apostrophe, and the role-reversal of its and it's, and the use of "the" in front of personal names...

O tempora, o mores!

Monica Ferris said...

You said it, Julie. I also have a twitch about "then" and "than." Then we went to bed, and she's smarter than he is. These things are not hard, so why do many people have a problem with them?

Betty Hechtman said...

Okay, maybe it's just me and I guess it is considered correct now - but gone missing? What happened to just plan missing?