I Wrote a Book

by Nathaniel Tower

About halfway through reading some book that was supposed to be some really deep shit, I decided to write my own book instead. I sat at my computer and hammered away for fifteen hours, stopping only to take a leak and to eat a sandwich. The rest of the time the words rolled off my fingertips like they had been waiting there all my life. I was born to do this.

When I was finished I printed my manuscript. It was fourteen chapters. It had wizards and terrorists and bombs and vampires and spies and even a great sex scene featuring this hot chick with huge tits. That part was so good it almost made me horny.

I drove to a friend's apartment and showed him. After reading the first few pages he said, "This shit's awesome. You should get this published." And he hadn't even read the sex scene yet.

So I drove to New York and went up a big skyscraper and demanded to see an important editor.

"You need an appointment," the frumpy woman at the desk said. She wouldn't have cut it as a character in my story.

"I don't need an appointment," I told her and marched to a big corner office with my manuscript. Security tried to stop me, but I was too quick, just like one of the protagonists in my book.

"Publish this," I ordered the man behind the desk.

The man sighed, "Give it here."

He read the first page. "This is pure shit," he told me.

"Are you kidding me? How can you tell after one page?"

He laughed. "I never read more than a page. Everything we get is shit."

"But you've published so many books!" I protested.

"Those are all shit too," he said.

"Then how can I get my book published?"

"You have to be one lucky son of a bitch." He tossed the manuscript out the window. It scattered into hundreds of pages.

"Just you wait," I said and stormed out of the building.

Outside I couldn't find the pages or my car, so I hopped on the subway. After awhile I saw some scraggily looking guy holding a piece of paper. I recognized it and asked what he thought.

"This is good shit," he said before sticking it in his pocket.

"I wrote that," I told him with a proud smile.

"I wrote a book once too," he said.

"Did you try to get it published?"

"I did get it published. It sold a few thousand copies. Might've even been a best seller."

"So what happened?" I asked, wondering how he'd ended up a vagrant on a subway.

"Beats me," he said. "This is my stop." He got up and walked away. As the subway pulled away I watched him toss my paper into a waste basket. 

When I got home I deleted the book from my computer. As good as it was, I knew I was better off doing what I was doing.