Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Pet Peeves: Sassy Answers to Silly Questions

One of my pet peeves are the questions writers appear to attract at coffee hour, potlucks, and when meeting relatives one hasn't seen in a long time: the kinds of questions  where the other person doesn't really care about the answer. So here are a few, along with some possible answers:

1. Where do you get your ideas?
A: From asking questions like, "But didn't her daughter object to being jerked out of school in the middle of the semester?" when I'm reading a book.

B: They strike me out of the clear blue while raking leaves or shoveling snow, and I have to run inside to scribble them down before I forget them.

C. From my dog, when we're out walking. He's full of ideas: arf, arf. All I have to do is interpret them.

2. How long have you been a writer?
A. I haven't worn a watch in forty years, more or less, so  I'd have a hard time figuring this out.

B. As best as I can remember, I've been writing something since my first grade teacher taught me to print.

C: What? Oh, you mean a published writer? Why didn't you say so?

3. What's your book about?
A: Which book?

B: A boy with a problem.

C: Aliens, spies, and terrorists. It's great. Go buy it.

4. How long does it take you to write a book?
A. Which one?

B. The first draft, or the final version?

C. Not long. I'm a fast typist. It's the editing that consumes the cycles.

5. What are your strengths as a writer?
A. Great wrist muscles

B: My typing abilities. I can type over fifty words a minute, and I don't have to look at the keyboard, either.

C. My ability to keep a straight face when answering all these questions.

6: But I really am interested. What now?

Email me. We'll chat. But be prepared for a page, at least, for each question.

Margaret Fieland is the author of Relocated. You can find her on  facebooktwitter, goodreads, her website and blog.

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Suzanne Johnson said...

LOL, those can be hard questions, Margaret--especially when you're on something like a blog tour and you're answering them for the tenth time. I'm always struggling to find a good answer but try to take them seriously from bloggers. With relatives, my answer's usually a one-liner, because I know they really don't want a serious answer. Someone asked me last night, "how do you come up with this stuff?" and I said, "drugs." Not true, of course, but it got a good laugh :-)

Pat McDermott said...

Love the humor in your responses, Margaret. Hope I remember them :-) Very entertaining post.

Sherry said...

So that's my problem...I don't own a dog! And the neighbor's dogs won't talk to me.

Anonymous said...

Loved your answers, Margaret, and will borrow them in future! My dog is also a fount of wisdom :)

Marsha said...

Very clever, Margaret. I also like when they ask, "Don't you have a book out yet?" Such a downer, especially before you have one coming out. Thanks for making me smile.

Jim Hartley said...

My favorite reply to "where do you get your ideas?" is the one from noted SF author, Harlan Ellison. His answer was "From Poughkeepsie, NY. There's a P.O. box there, you send them $3 and they send you an idea."

Susan Hornbach said...

Thanks for the laughs Margaret.

Margaret Fieland said...

Thanks for the comments, guys. Jim, I love Ellison's answer, too.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Haha, there's something very RIGHT about an author with a sense of humour. Love it!

Wendy said...

Cheeky, Margaret! Sherry, you can borrow my dog if you don't mind her telling you off. Jim can you please forward that Poughkeepsie address?

Rachel Schieffelbein said...

Ha! Thank goodness for dogs. :)

D. Jean Quarles said...

Ha! Ha! Very true. Loved your post.

Heidiwriter said...

LOL. Very good, Margaret! It is funny the questions people will ask.

J.Q. Rose said...

Clever post. And thanks for the giggles.