Peevish Pen

Ruminations on reading, writing, rural living, retirement, aging—and sometimes cats. And maybe a border collie or other critters.

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Location: Rural Virginia, United States

I'm an elderly retired teacher who writes. Among my books are Ferradiddledumday (Appalachian version of the Rumpelstiltskin story), Stuck (middle grade paranormal novel), Patches on the Same Quilt (novel set in Franklin County, VA), Them That Go (an Appalachian novel), and several Kindle ebooks.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Dark & Stormy

By now everyone has heard of the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest. I gained notoriety by winning the “Worst Western” division of the 1996 contest (and, I’m proud to add, a dishonorable mention in the 1999 contest). Yes, I’ve mentioned this, uh, distinction before on this blog. Might as well milk the honor for all it’s worth.

It’s been more than a decade since the last anthology of dreadful opening sentences was published. However, in 2007, a new collection will roll off the press. My sentence will be among the other bad ones. The publisher seems to have a problem with the title, though.

Today, over a hundred of us got this email from the contest organizer:

The permissions are rolling in. My publisher suggests a new title, perhaps the one I should have used for the second book, "It Was a Dark and Stormy Night II." Roman numerals would have been a more intelligent marketing choice. That way, owners of volumes I and II could have inquired about the appearance of III. And someone who purchased V would know that there were earlier volumes. Why didn't one of you think of this? By the way, feel free to make any suggestions that occur to you.

Scott Rice, Grand Panjandrum
Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest

I suggested It Was Still a Dark and Stormy Night.

Not too original, but my talents lie in writing bad sentences, not in thinking of good titles.

As a side note, heavy rain is expected in my area tonight. And tonight will be dark. Tomorrow I can honestly say, "It was a dark and stormy night when I posted this entry."

Eddie B-L, eat your heart out.

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