Thursday, June 11, 2009
by Pamela Kent
I knew I should have felt something when I plunged that letter opener deep into her flesh, where I estimated her heart to be – if she had a heart. And indeed, I did feel something – satisfaction
The letter opener would not have been my first choice. It was a quick, if painful death. I would have preferred something more lingering. Poison perhaps, the rack no longer being executionally correct.
I had spent seven years writing that ‘tell-all’ memoir. It had ruined my marriage, alienated my children, left me friendless, but she had destroyed my career with just a few words in an email. An email for God’s sake! The least I expected was a letter; hand-written would have been a nice touch, but I would have been satisfied with a signed, typewritten note, in an envelope, with a stamp in one corner, delivered in the usual manner. When you deliver bad news, the least you can do is to deliver it diplomatically.
She said that it wasn’t right for their agency. She said there were agencies that handled ‘this types of book’. Yes, she actually wrote ‘this types of book’.
That was what pushed me over the edge. She made a mistake in a three-line email. I made sure there were no typographical errors in the whole of my manuscript, but she couldn’t proof read one small email. And yet, she felt competent to judge my writing.
She lived to regret that rejection. But not for long.