Category Archives: From Instagram

On Gwyneth Paltrow and Reading My Book Out Loud

So that pile of papers is…my book!

In the biz, we call this “First Pass.” The manuscript has been revised, copy-edited, fact-checked and typeset… so this was the first time I got to read my words on pages that look like actual book pages, not a Word document. This is the second time I’ve edited a hard copy — I printed the whole Word doc out to line edit before I submitted my first draft last fall. But I did something a little different this time, which was to read the whole manuscript out loud. I got this tip from Anna Quindlen when I heard her interviewed on my favorite writing podcast; apparently she always reads her manuscripts out loud in their entirety. It sounds sort of obvious, but I can see why most people don’t do it. It is surprisingly exhausting to read a whole book out loud. One chapter takes several hours when you’re stopping to edit and also drink a lot of water. It took me the better part of two weeks to get through the whole thing.

But it was excellent advice. I found I caught far more mistakes and word reps and run-on sentences than I ever do reading silently. So much so that I am now slightly despairing that galleys (advance reading copies — the things that look a lot more like books but don’t have hard covers) are made from these First Pass pages before all my corrections went in. So if you get a galley from me in the next few weeks, please know the final book really is going to be oh so much better and maybe don’t even really read the galley, but just admire it from afar? (Unless I’m asking you to blurb, of course. And even then, maybe sort of skim?)

Okay but here are some things you can read — silently or out loud, your choice — while you’re waiting to read my book.

“If I can afford steak, why worry about buying beans?” Fascinating interviews with black men on how they perceive their food environments.

Should we use prisoners to study salt

Almost everybody gets unhealthy eventually: I love how Dr. Arya Sharma breaks down a new LANCET study, which tried to conclude that even if you’re “healthy fat” now, you’ll end up “unhealthy fat” later. (Short version: You probably will. But so will your “healthy thin” friend. It’s called aging!)

President Obama’s Lucky Pasta

It’s just not nice (or helpful!) to call your kid a picky eater. (And if there’s one thing I learned researching my book: Pickiness is in the eye of the beholder.)

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The story of Violet’s heart. #CHDAwarenessWeek

The story of Violet's heart. #CHDAwarenessWeek

I’ve written about writing this piece before, so I won’t go into all that back story again. But I wanted to share the essay once again, since it’s the last day of Congenital Heart Disease Awareness Week. Already, since I first published this piece last August, several more states have passed laws requiring the pulse oximetry screening — which is truly terrific news. But it’s still not required in all 50 states. And even states that have the law on the books may be slow to enforce it — as was the case for us. So if you’re a new or expecting parent, it’s worth asking (and then double-checking) to be sure this life-saving test is performed.

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A Truth Hard to Swallow #feedingtubeawarenessweek

A Truth Hard to Swallow #feedingtubeawarenessweek

Feeding struggles are about so much more than tubes — and unfortunately, these issues all too often go misdiagnosed. Or worse, get classified as “picky eating” and are blamed on bad parenting. Feeding Matters is a great organization that offers a lot of support and resources for families. If you’re concerned about your child’s eating, their Infant & Child Feeding Questionnaire is a great place to start.

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Feeding tubes by the numbers. #feedingtubeawarenessweek

Feeding tubes by the numbers. #feedingtubeawarenessweek

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Would you eat lunch in here? #tubefeedsaremealtimestoo

Would you eat lunch in here? #tubefeedsaremealtimestoo

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Why I accost every pregnant woman I meet. #pulseox #screeningsavelives #CHDAwarenessWeek

Why I accost every pregnant woman I meet. #pulseox #screeningsavelives #CHDAwarenessWeek

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We often heard “no baby will starve herself!” But it’s not that simple. #FeedingTubeAwarenessWeek

We often heard "no baby will starve herself!" But it's not that simple. #FeedingTubeAwarenessWeek

In fact, some babies and young children will starve themselves — because eating is too difficult, painful, or traumatizing. And too often, parents face judgment instead of support. For a full list of conditions that can necessitate tube-feeding, check out the Feeding Tube Awareness Association’s list. (So many other good resources there!)

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Folks, in a strange kismet of scheduling, this week is #FeedingTubeAwarenessWeek AND #CHDAwarenessWeek. So I'll be taking a break from our regularly scheduled programming to raise awareness about the two children's health issues that have transformed our family – and thousands just like us. Stay tuned. #mightyviolet #teamviolet

Folks, in a strange kismet of scheduling, this week is #FeedingTubeAwarenessWeek AND #CHDAwarenessWeek. So I'll be taking a break from our regularly scheduled programming to raise awareness about the two children's health issues that have transformed our family - and thousands just like us. Stay tuned. #mightyviolet #teamviolet

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Loretta Ross ran the country's first rape crisis hotline. (Legacy of Campus Rape, More Magazine.)

Loretta Ross ran the country's first rape crisis hotline. (Legacy of Campus Rape, More Magazine.)

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Katie Koestner now runs Take Back The Night. (Legacy of Campus Rape, More Magazine)

Katie Koestner now runs Take Back The Night. (Legacy of Campus Rape, More Magazine)

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