The title says it all. I fell like crap.


You ever have those days where you just can’t do anything? Where it just feels like everything you do is worthless.

Nothing’s been working out. Not since that goddamned package.

I’m still shaken up. My home has never been broken into before. I just feel so angry that someone was in my apartment. Who the hell were they and what were they looking for?

I’ve been trying to write more “Doom Truth” but the words just haven’t been flowing. Every new sentence sounds stupid when I read it aloud. The plot, characters, it’s all uncertain. I feel like I need to just start over from the beginning.

And to top it all off, the big piece I’ve been working on for nearly a month was rejected by my editor.

I went in this morning to talk with Ed Slizawski, my editor for the Boston Crier. I had gone in sure my article would do well. Again, I’d sunk a whole lotta time and love into it. I titled it “Den of Thieves: The Rise of Boston’s Most Notorious Crime District”. It was on the increasing levels of crime in McAffrey’s Place. I’d even gone there to do research! I was sure I was going to be robbed like six times.

But when I walked into Ed’s office, Ed had a grim face. Nothing unusual there. It was when he said, “Please sit down, Raymond,” that I knew something was wrong. Ed only says ‘please’ when he’s got bad news.

I sat down. The leather squeaked underneath me.

Ed stared at me over clasped hands. His narrow eyes were framed by the fat, black rims of his glasses.

“I read your article,” Ed said.

“…And, what’d you think?”

Ed puckered his lips and let out a long puff of air in my face. His breath smelled of mint, “Well I certainly liked parts of it. But, as it is, I don’t think I can publish it.”

“What the hell? Why not?”

Ed’s eyes turned into two, dark lines, “Well for starters, what was the point of it? What are our readers supposed to get out of it after they read it?”

“That there’s bad shit happening at McAffrey’s Place and the city government’s not doing much about it!”

Ed clicked his tongue, “See, I don’t know why you wrote that. We can’t go pointing fingers at the mayor and the city. Besides, it’s been shown that recent government programs have been reducing poverty and organized crime. You seem to think the opposite.”

“Because I went to McAffrey’s. I know what I saw there. And I did my research.”

“I’m sure you did,” Ed looked down and now busied himself with straightening the already straightened pens on his desk. I knew by that he was done with this conversation. But I pressed on.

“C’mon, Ed, you can’t stop the article just over that. If there were actual criticisms I could rewrite parts—”

Ed glanced up, “I do have actual criticism. I am not going to allow you to accuse the city government wrongly. You could always remove those sections, but I know how stubborn you can get. Particularly with me.”

“Gee, I wonder why,” I muttered.

“If you won’t change the article, then I will not allow it to be printed.”

“Fine,” I jumped to my feet, “I guess we’re done here.”

“I’m sorry, Ray, but that’s the way it’s got to be.”

I grunted. As I walked out the door, I pushed one of Ed’s hanging photographs so it hung crooked. I could almost hear him twitch behind me. That gave me some satisfaction.


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