Two years ago I got an email from a well-known author asking me to write an essay for an upcoming book.
I was stunned and flattered. For weeks, I labored over my essay, pouring my heart and soul into my writing. And then I sent it in. And then I got an email back saying how much the author liked it. And then? Nothing.
A year later, I wrote the author to ask about the status. As it turned out, it had just gone to the publishing company! Wee-hoo!
And so I waited some more. And then, the other day, I happened to notice that the book was finally coming out! Very, very soon!
Now, this is the part where every other blogger, with charming but false modesty, tells you where you can order his or her book, and how you can find out if he or she is coming to your town to sign the copy you obviously will be purchasing.
But this story has a twist. Because yesterday, the author very, very belatedly sent me a message saying my heartfelt, tear, and sweat-stained essay wasn’t exactly in that book.
And that was bad, both for my ego and my wallet, since I had stupidly agreed to do the work without getting paid anything up front. But what really twisted the knife was that I received the news …
And that makes me, I’m pretty sure, the first almost-published author ever to be rejected by an editor …
I mean, it was a direct message, so at least I was the only one who could see it. But still!
Was I not even worth a freaking email? Did I not rank highly enough in the world of letters to receive a standard salutation? A “Best wishes” at the end? And some kind of explanation somewhere in the body?
“Am I the worst editor ever in life?” the author DM’ed, after the news had (very briefly) been relayed.
And that’s when I got an inkling of why Twitter was the messenger of this ill-timed information.
Because try as I might, there was no way I could keep my reply under 140 characters. Which kept me from responding.
Which was probably a good thing.