Ruminations on the Digital Realm

Jan Stedehouder

A writer's rant (2)

“Jonathan Metzbloke is an internationally acclaimed power consultant. Scores of Fortune 500 top managers have benefited from Jonathan’s personal coaching.” Bin opened the book to check the price on the last page. ‘$ 12,50… way to expensive’, he muttered. He looked past isle 15 to the desk at the end. No, that wouldn’t work this time. It was Jackie’s day off. There was this new kid here at Delaney’s Book Emporium, Mahmood, and no way he would give Bin a $ 5 discount. He checked his watch. Time to go back to the office. With a sigh the book went back on the shelf. As he walked to the exit Selena turned around and said: “See you tomorrow, mr. Smith”, which would have been a nice gesture if she could leave that scowl of her face. Bin waved back anyway.

Without haste Selena continued with the new collection of exotic cook books. From $ 59,95 to $ 7,99. ‘What a waste’, Selena thought, ‘some bozo spend months of his life to write THE Book, only to see the unsold copies channeled to Delaney’s after six months.’ I am one of those bozo’s. I wrote a good novel. The children would have loved it. Selena was beyond herself when the manuscript was accepted. And went ballistic when she was working on the new delivery and saw her baby, her novel in the stack. 369 copies, to be sold for $ 1,99. She went home crying that night. And she cried again that november, when Delaney threw away the remaining 341. Buying the lot herself was no option. She barely made enough money to live. That day her artist’s soul died.


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