When I was working on the first draft of ATT, I got stuck on one phrase. I wanted something like “good-to-go”, but that phrase was strongly rooted in US military jargon. I wanted something with the same connotation, but unique to a sci-fi atmosphere. After struggling with several failed attempts, I finally reached out to some friends in the wake of a D&D email thread. One buddy took a stab at it:
On Mon, 6 Dec 2004 08:41:49 -0500, Matt wrote:
> Geared up
These were all right; not quite what I needed, but they could work. After that it became a contest of mockery.
On Mon, 6 Dec 2004 10:09:30 -0500, Ron wrote:
> “Bob’s your Uncle”
Technically, Bob’s my uncle-in-law, but whatever.
On Mon, 6 Dec 2004 10:22:10 Jason wrote:
Right. And then I got the final response that killed the thread, because no one could top it (or they had better things to do).
On Mon, 6 Dec 2004 10:31:52 Matt wrote:
>How about, ‘My groin’s been kicked”.
>Here, I’ll use it in the context of Pete’s book:
>Raccoon Guy: Hey you panty-wearing sally’s… are you ready to kick some monkey-pig creature ass?
>Ant-like Person: Sir, Yes Sir. My groin’s been kicked.
>Dolphin Solder: Blub, blee blub. My groin’s been kicked. Blub.
>Gnome: Arggee matie. Me groin’s been kicked. Argg.
>Racoon Guy: Then let’s move out!
This was from one of my early beta readers, a buddy who had put the manuscript on a shelf for a year before returning it, unread. The dolphin bit still makes me chuckle to this day. Thanks, Matt.
Since then I’ve honed my craft without crowdsourcing, which has worked out a little better. As I prepare to begin the first revision of #3’s initial draft, all I can say is,
“My groin’s been kicked.”