Naughty Cookies

December 24, 2016

Three years ago, there was a contest for a flash fiction piece about Christmas. This was super mega micro flash, because the story couldn’t be more than 250 words. I didn’t win (big shock) but I did manage to write a flash story at 250 words. Since it’s about Christmas and that just so happens to be tomorrow, enjoy as my gift to you this year!


“Naughty Cookies”

by Myke Edwards

Typically reeking of garlic and liquor, gingerbread and nutmeg wafted through the alley this particular Christmas Eve.  Nick waited at the dumpster, tapping his foot.  The man with the bag was ten minutes late.

Frigid air swirled about, carrying the distant sound of ringing bells.  Up above, Nick saw scant, brave stars poking through the light pollution of the city.  A dark object glided among them, better late than never.  It doubled back, descending and landing atop a nearby building.

With a grunt, a man, taller than a spruce tree and dressed in red furs landed on the ground.  Coming from five stories up, his boots left an indentation in the concrete.  Over his shoulder, he hefted the bag, overstuffed and bursting at the seams.

“What took you?” Nick asked.  He approached the man.

“Too many naughty children this year.”  He tossed the bag to Nick, like it weighed nothing.  “I couldn’t get them all.”  It landed heavy on the ground between them.

“Then go collect what you can,” Nick said.  “Your workshop on Mars could always use more workers.”

“I lost half of my elves this year!  I need to collect as many of those naughty children as I can.”

“Why did you even send the elves out?  You know the bad kids always kill them.”  Nick opened the bag, cringing at the sight.  Countless corpses of elves, already beginning to decompose.

“I can’t be everywhere at once.  Now recycle them into cookies.  I’ll be starving by tomorrow morning.”

THE END?


Merry Christmas and a Happy Hanukkah to one and all! Happy Holidays and anything else you may celebrate! No matter what you believe and celebrate, I love, cherish, and respect all my sexy friends 😉

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This morning before leaving for work, I checked my email as I usually do. Surprisingly/not surprisingly, there was an email from a publication regarding a story I recently submitted. I was happy! Specifically because it only took them five days to respond—that’s impressive!

Well, it was a rejection. No biggie, I’m so used to it that I don’t even flinch when someone tells me no. I mean, it’s not me or my writing, right? It’s the fact that they just don’t need it right now. Right? Right?

Right.

Anyway, I’m not trying to have a pity party for my rejection. I’m more upset at whom the email was addressed to.

Michale.

Not Michael. Michale.

I know, I know, it’s an easy mistake, especially when you’re typing fast. The peon that had the luxury of reading my story (or in this case, the cover letter and tossing it into the reject pile based on the unfamiliarity of my name alone) probably had a virtual stack of fifty stories he couldn’t care less about and wanted to get these emails sent out asap, the quicker the better.

Juxtaposing two letters in a name is not difficult. I’ve done it. You’ve done it. Everyone has. But for some reason, I can’t get it out of my mind that this guy simply did not care.

And that’s the problem. If these publications/editors/first readers would actually take the time to do their job and read these stories, all the while ignoring the cover letter and the name and everything else that is not specifically the story they are deciding whether or not to publish, maybe some yutz could remember to try, at least try, to spell my name correctly in the rush to get to a story written by someone they actually know.

Accidents happen. People make mistakes. Know what else they do? Pass over quality for a friend.

Food for thought, editors.

Addendum – I received another rejection this afternoon, long after writing this. They spelled my name correctly. Thank you!

So close I can taste it

December 17, 2016

As we (here in Ohio, at least) delve into colder temperatures and stupid snow all over the place, I suddenly have a lot of free time. My day job is centered around selling building supplies to contractors (and the occasional clueless homeowner…seriously, are there any homeowners out there that actually know how to fix their house without making it worse?!), we are experiencing a lack of business.

This has been beneficial for me personally, because I can get a lot of stuff done that otherwise I’d have to squeeze in somehow–especially with Rogue One this weekend! I hate to plan my life around movies, but c’mon, Star Wars!!!

Ahem. Anyway…

I’ve talked about my novel, In the Pale Moonlight, several times over the years. It’s been a long time coming, specifically because I’ve taken a long, long time with it. Mostly, it was laziness. I’d write a lot, put it aside for “a week or two” and several months later I’d get back to it. Even after it was done, I putted around with editing it, but ultimately, got it all done.

So my attempts to get it accepted by an agent were met with either stock rejections or silence. It won’t keep me down, however, and I declared loud and clear that I was going to self-publish it. There’s so many free programs online that hey, this can’t be that hard, right?

Wrong! It’s so much work that other people would typically do for me had this been accepted by an actual publisher. It’s okay, I’ve learned a lot about it, and also about myself.

For starters, I really make a lot of typos. I mean, not as many as some people I know (every other word, like seriously!), but I’ll gloss over a word or two here and there. Not to mention, there’s a lot of sloppy writing in there. So I decided to go through the book just to make sure there weren’t any major issues, figuring it would take a day or two.

Two weeks later, I came out with a new draft of the book. Typos fixed, grammatical errors taken care of, and awkward sentences rewritten, it’s got a fresh sheen on it that no one can take away from me.

As far as I’m concerned, the book is good to go!

All I need to do is format it (well, finish formatting it, I’m almost done) for Smashwords and Amazon and whatever programs I plan on putting it on. I also have to finalize cover art, which is much more difficult than you’d think. I know, I know, you have a program or website or this and that and I need to check it out right now! I’ve seen all of them, tried them all, etc. I have something in mind and it isn’t as easy as you want it to be.

Finally, I need a release date. Do I plan it a month in advance, so I can promote it? Two weeks? Two months? Six months? I don’t know…and I’m worried that I won’t give myself enough time to prepare. Not to mention, I’ve got to start worrying about marketing and promotions for it…

Ugh. It will (hopefully!) pay off in the end. Not that I’m looking for a huge payday–I’d love to be able to pay off my car, my credit cards, my student loans, or anything else, but let’s be honest: am I going to be a millionaire from this?

Nope. But my book will be published and available for one and all. In the end, that’s all I can hope for.

Wish me luck–I’m oh so close!

Seriously?

December 1, 2016

I finally heard back from that one particular publication that wasn’t responding to my emails, and had gone way over their time limit for a response. Of course it was a rejection. I’m not surprised, but what’s bothering me about it is that they quite obviously never even read the story. Yeah yeah yeah, I’m being too cynical and negative, but believe me, they didn’t.

I need to change my name, maybe something that people will think sells books. Brainless Moneymaker, perhaps? Sigh…

I’ve got so much I want to say about this right now, but I don’t have the time or patience. But if anyone has read this far, thank you. That’s farther than most editors will get.