The Famous Author's been married a few times; it took him two decades to sell my first adventure; and his agent has been out there pitching Austin Carr #3 for more than a year. Let's face it, TFA should be used to rejection. But now that he's been writing short stories, sending out submissions, the man has turned into a whining baby.
"I can't believe they didn't like that story," he said this evening.
Some online crime ezine said no, I guess. He didn't explain. Or maybe it was because he was whining and sobbing so loud I couldn't understand him. The jerk.
"Did you look at it again?" I said, "maybe try to figure why they quit reading?"
TFA stared at me. Obviously, the answer was no. The turkey was too busy feeling sorry for himself. I made him open the short story file and read the story outloud to me. I stopped him halfway through.
"I can tell you right now why that story was passed on," I said. "I mean, besides the fact it wasn't about me."
"The hook was in paragraph five. The editors never got that far."
"Are you sure?" he said. "I thought the bit about -- "
"Trust me, TFA."
I'm pretty sure TFA's going to spend the weekend moving up the hook and resubmitting that particular story somewhere else. Let's hope he learns his lesson, too: Do not send out material until it's ready -- let stories stew for a while and look at those words again.
All is not rejection, however. Remember TFA's first short story in 30 years is getting readied for online publication in July. Thank goodness TFA's tale isn't following the current offering at BEAT TO A PULP, an awesomely crafted piece by Edgar-winner Megan Abbott's mom, Patricia.