Monday, December 17, 2007

The Seasonally Adjusted Story

by Helen Woodall

Dearest Editor,

I know you will be wanting to buy some Christmas stories with Christmas just around the corner so I am sending you my latest masterpiece. I just know you will love it as much as I do.

Originally it was going to be about Halloween but life intervened – you know how it does – and I didn't get it finished. But I just changed the pumpkin pie into mince pie so I am sure everything will be fine.

Love from
Your Favorite Author
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Hello Author,

I am sorry to inform you your book is not acceptable as it is. You need to do some more revising.
I can quite understand that it may snow at Halloween and Christmas where you live, but you sent your hero and heroine off on vacation to Uncle Charlie’s in Australia – and December is summer there. They need sunscreen and flip flops, not coats and snow boots.

In Australia chrysanthemums flower in May, not December. And birds do not fly south to escape the winter. South is the Antarctic. It is very cold there.

Your Editor
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Dearest Editor,

Since it took you a whole month to read my book I am not going to be able to get it ready in time for Christmas now, so I have made it into a Valentine’s Day story. The pumpkin pie/mince pies are now jelly cakes in the shape of a heart – so very romantic.

I have changed the flowers and the birds. Did you know Begonias flower all year round? I can use them in every book I write and never have to worry again!!!

Love from
Your Favorite Author
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Hello Author,

Maybe because you have changed the dates of your story so much, there is now nothing at all to make it a real Valentine’s Day story. Jelly cakes in the shape of a heart are indeed a lovely romantic gesture but they do not specifically say “Valentine’s Day”. Nor do Begonias.

Perhaps you should decide on a holiday and stick to it. Do some research specifically about that holiday and then weave those items into your story – spooky details for Halloween, maybe some carols for Christmas, or something unusually romantic for Valentine’s Day. Really the whole point about writing a holiday story is that the season is an integral focus of the plot – it brings the characters together for a reason or to a specific place or to do something different from normal.

If you send your characters to some special location you should use that location in the story. Uncle Charlie lives in Queensland – there is a very famous coral reef there that I am sure would make a wonderful background for a romantic scene.

I am sorry to inform you that your book is still not acceptable in its current form.

Your Editor


Amarinda Jones said...

Are you quoting me??

Cindy Spencer Pape said...

okay, I promise, no more begonias!

Anny Cook said...

Birds fly north? Gotcha! Birds fly north, birds fly north...

Mona Risk said...

"Editor" has a good sense of humor. LOL. I'll never set a story in Aussie land.

Kelly Kirch said...

Dear Editor,

I have a very unique voice which requires frequent use of the words "that", "all of a sudden", and "peek". It is my ferverent belief that removing this verbage alters my voice. If I put a frog in my next book, will you let them stay?

A Snarky Frog who adores you.

Kathleen Coddington said...

Darn! We're supposed to do research?

Rena Marks said...

Okay, what's up with all the froggies feeling guilty and responding? LOL

Kelly Kirch said...

We froggies love our Queen. Our Froggy Queen can beat yours because she's smarter and stronger and more specialer than any other editor Queen out there.

I sound so mature.

Solange Ayre said...

OK, so obviously the thing to do is set the holiday story on an alien planet. That way the lovers can visit Uncle Cxoliu, eat tlkjey cakes and pick blue mutant begonias.

Anny Cook said...

Ah, that's where I went wrong. Never fear. I've already started on the Christmas story for next year so surely it'll be done on time!

Ashlyn Chase said...

Helen, we love ya. Make fun of us all you want--we STILL love ya.


Anonymous said...


Someone please tell me that exchange is just a joke.

Georgie Lee said...

What about a Halloween story with a hunk dressed up as Santa Claus? Would that work?

Vicky B said...

LOL - this is hilarious - and also sad because I've read stories like this.

Vicky B

Amanda Young said...

Oh wow. I needed a good laugh this morning.

Heather said...

Y'all are nuts! I'm so glad I'm a part of the EC clan. LOL

How about we toss a Leprechaun into the mix? I do so love the color green. He could fight the Santa dressed hero, on Halloween for the heroine, who's wearing red hearts all over her shirt that says "Be Mine". But I guess that leaves out the Easter bunny and the Thanksgiving Turkey and Uncle Sam. Oh wait, they are circled around Santa and the Leprechaun cheering them on. Did I miss anyone? LOL