Thursday, October 23, 2008

Japanese Tentacle Porn Actresses: Why I Envy Them

You know you’re on the wrong career path when you find yourself entertaining gloomy thoughts like “If I had my life to live over again, I’d do it all differently. I’d make better decisions. I’d work in Japanese tentacle porn.”

Just kidding. I think. Forgive my lack of recent postings, but this has been one of those weeks where the pesky real world has greatly interfered with my time spent putzing around on the Internet.

I have found a job of sorts, editing manuscripts for a vanity publisher. My task is to take paragraphs like Mental pictures filled her mind of the tall dark handsome stranger with smoldering eyes who looked at her with eyes that smoldered and said “I love you your so beautiful” and try to turn them into something readable.

How does this compare to working in tentacle porn? On the plus side, I’m not required to have sex with an octopus. On the minus side, if I were required to have sex with an octopus I could simply close my eyes and think of England rather than be expected to offer dispassionate advice on how to make the whole “sex with octopi” experience more enjoyable for the readers: “No! It doesn’t seem as though she’s being ravished by an octopus; she is being ravished by an octopus. There’s nothing metaphorical about it. Speaking of metaphors, ‘the tentacle entered into her like some sort of tentacle entering into her’ doesn’t really work as one. Also, if you have a few minutes, perhaps we could chat about the proper use of the subjunctive: it’s ‘If I were a horny octopus I’d go totally gaga over green-haired schoolgirls in little plaid dresses,’ not ‘if I was a horny octopus’.”

And now I must end this blog post and resume my editorial duties like some sort of editorial duty being resumed by a woman with smoldering blue eyes who stared at her computer screen with blue eyes that smoldered and thought goddammit I am wasting my life.

23 Comments:

Blogger Anne O'Neimaus said...

Alternatively:

If "I was a horny octopus" is a bad title, then "I were a horny octopus" is even worse.

Amazing what you can do, with misplaced punctuation!

4:47 PM  
Blogger Anne O'Neimaus said...

Jennifer, it's petty, narrow-minded pedants like you who are going to put automated editing software out of business! (I hope.)

Why don't you just take the approach that all the major newspapers obviously are, these days: Load the text into MS-Word, run Spellchecker and take the first suggested spelling, every time - regardless of context. Then, just 'cause you're better than they are, run it through MS-Word's grammar-checker too, and slavishly follow its suggestions for how to mangle and trivialize things.

Sadly, the latter suggestion might even be a good one, when the "general public" is the target audience. Keeping word-count down is (obviously) a problem of mine. Piling on subordinate clauses and conditional phrases is another issue. Sigh! :-)

4:54 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

"Speaking of metaphors, ‘the tentacle entered into her like some sort of tentacle entering into her’ doesn’t really work as one."

Well of course not, silly. It's a simile.

6:46 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

I KNEW the problem was something like that, Jim. You can tell my new job's getting to me.

6:59 PM  
Anonymous Stevo Darkly said...

You knew I would have to come over and read this, even though I knew most of the story already.

8:35 PM  
Blogger Kevin Carson said...

National Lampoon used to have a regular called "True Facts," made up of actual clippings from the press. One of the recurring items was called "Lines From the Slushpile," howlers submitted by anonymous editors. I can't find any of the actual content online, but as I recall it was something like this:

"Metaphors found in Year 12 English Essays"

Her face was a perfect oval, like a circle that had its 2 sides gently compressed by a Thigh Master.

He spoke with the wisdom that can only come from experience, like a guy who went blind because he looked at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it and now goes around the country speaking at high schools about the dangers of looking at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it.

She grew on him like she was a colony of E.coli and he was room-temperature prime English beef.

She had a deep, throaty, genuine laugh, like that sound a dog makes just before it throws up.

He was as tall as a six-foot-three-inch tree.

The little boat gently drifted across the pond exactly the way a bowling ball wouldn't.

The hailstones leapt from the pavement, just like maggots when you try to fry them in hot oil.

John and Mary had never met. They were like two hummingbirds who had also never met.

The plan was simple, like my brother-in-law Phil. But unlike Phil, this plan might just work.

The young fighter had a hungry look, the kind you get from not eating for a while.

He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck, either, but a real duck that was actually lame. Maybe from stepping on a landmine or something.

The ballerina rose gracefully en pointe and extended one slender leg behind her, like a puppy at a fire hydrant.

9:45 PM  
Blogger Michelle In Ga said...

you editing bodice rippers

lol

9:53 PM  
Blogger Anne O'Neimaus said...

"you editing bodice rippers"

Hey, give her a break. After all, it's a step up from editing SPAM. ;-)

11:54 PM  
Blogger Grant said...

I think Satan must have made a filing error somewhere: I'm pretty sure what you are describing was supposed to have been my personal hell.

3:51 AM  
Blogger Caveman Lawyer said...

Now I know how the books my wife reads are turned from cheep and tawdry soft-core porn manuscripts into quality soft-core porn novellas. Thank you, this was as informative as an episode of Dirty Jobs.

5:36 AM  
Anonymous Jeff P said...

Wow, ten responses to a Jennifer post with the word "porn" in it and no freaks yet. She must be losing her street cred with the sociopaths.

I have not yet decided how this will affect my plans to get a squid tattooed on my junk...

8:25 AM  
Blogger rhhardin said...

The subjunctive, according to Thurber's Ladies' and Gentlemen's Guide to Modern English Usage, is used for moral posturing and sparring for time.

eg ``If there be justice,'' and ``What if he were?''

8:34 AM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

They passionately made passionate love really really passionately.

11:25 AM  
Blogger Anne O'Neimaus said...

Given that 'mean' is colloquially used to mean 'extraordinary' (as in 'he has a mean serve'), one could ask about the implications of an extremely high average incidence of petty cruelty, thus:

'What does a really mean mean mean mean?'

1:30 PM  
Anonymous NoStar said...

Anne,
Knock that off. I mean it.

3:52 PM  
Blogger Michelle In Ga said...

How many words have you edited for the male genitalia yet. You must
keep a list and report back!

9:21 PM  
Anonymous smartass sob said...

"you editing bodice rippers"

Hey, give her a break. After all, it's a step up from editing SPAM. ;-)



Yeah! Besides, I'm sure she'll do her usual, very professional best.

11:43 PM  
Anonymous A Moose said...


Knock that off. I mean it.


Anybody want a peanut?

11:54 AM  
Blogger Anne O'Neimaus said...

How 'bout:

"With a fiery kiss to match her scorching gaze in the sweltering tropical heat, she murmured 'You are so hot!' in a sultry voice."

7:22 AM  
Blogger Anne O'Neimaus said...

Sorry - couldn't help myself. I also couldn't figure out a good way to work in "torrid", "burning love", and the ever-popular "molten lava pouring into her steaming cleft" without making the sentence too unwieldy.

8:07 AM  
Blogger Anne O'Neimaus said...

On the other hand, I've heard that a burning sensation during copulation can be a sign of advanced venarial disease. Maybe the metaphor isn't so much over-used as misunderstood...

8:12 AM  
Anonymous Arthur Alan said...

Congratulations on the new job. You should read Umberto Eco's Foucalt's Pendulum if you have not already. It is about a group of editors at an Italian vanity press who share your frustrations with tortured prose. Out of boredom, they concoct a conspiracy theory involving the knights of templar. All sorts of esoteric hijinx ensue. It's a very intersting novel.

7:45 PM  
Anonymous smartass sob said...

Okay, speaking of overwrought prose, here's a scary Halloween story for you that someone sent to me: (apologies, if you've already seen this)



A man is walking home alone late one foggy Halloween night, when
behind him he hears:


BUMP...


BUMP...



BUMP...




Walking faster, he looks back and through the fog he makes out the
image of an upright casket banging its way down the middle of the street toward him.



BUMP...




BUMP...




BUMP...





Terrified, the man begins to run toward his home, the casket bouncing quickly behind him.




FASTER...



FASTER...




BUMP...

BUMP...

BUMP....



He runs up to his door, fumbles with his keys, opens the door, rushes in, slams and locks the door behind him. However, the casket crashes
through his door, with the lid of the casket clapping.


clappity-BUMP...



clappity-BUMP...


clappity-BUMP...


on his heels, as the terrified man runs.



Rushing upstairs to the bathroom, he locks himself in. His heart is
pounding; his head is reeling; his breath is coming in sobbing gasps.




With a loud CRASH the casket breaks down the door.




Bumping and clapping toward him.




The man screams and reaches for something, anything, but all he can find is a bottle of cough syrup! Desperate, he throws the cough syrup at the
casket...


and,...





(hopefully you're ready for this!!!)






The coffin stops !

3:07 AM  

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