Sunday, November 19, 2017

Trailing Vines

September 2, 2009 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Editing, Publishing, Self publishing

I have been editing sample pages of a memoir by Lita, a woman in the Continuing OWL writing circle that I have facilitated once a month since 2003. From force of habit, I pick up my red pen and mark the words and punctuation I would change. By the time I am done, the page seems to be bleeding and I worry that Lita will be taken aback when she sees it. I decide to redo the edits in green. There is something friendly about green. The English teachers of our childhood, for the most part, marked our work in red and their marks carried the power to pass or fail us at each essay, quiz, test and exam.

Green is free of these scary associations. Green ink leaves trails on the paper like vines twining up the page. Green seems less fraught with judgment—it is the color of nature whose furies may devastate but no malice or judgment is implied. Yes, Lita will appreciate green!

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