WE WILL PUBLISH YOUR STORY!
So read a notice in the Long Beach Community Newsletter.
It was an offer I could not refuse.
My initial reaction was to do nothing more than submit a link to godfatherofmath.blogspot.com. That would have been well within the submission guidelines of "Five hundred words–or less–"
Therefore, I compromised but did include a self-addressed stamped envelope.
There was a large house with a red tile roof and there was a gray stone mill, and from the trees around the big house beyond the river came the flashes of our guns. They were firing straight at us and there were the twin flashes, then the throaty, short bung-bung of the three-inch pieces and Then the rising cry of the shells coming toward us and going over our heads. As always, we were short of artillery. There were only four batteries down there, where there should have been forty, and they were firing only two guns at a time. The attack had failed before we came down.
I got a response within a week. A three word sequence–there, where there–was encircled in red with a huge question mark across the entire text.
There was also a three word comment:Too many pronouns
But I had the last laugh.
The pronouns were not mine.
The paragraph was excerpted from a book entitled "Fifth Column & Four Unpublished Stories From The Spanish Civil War."
The name on the self-addressed envelope–Ernie Hamwing–compromised my deception. The actual author was Ernest Hemingway. The actual name of the "Unpublished Story" was Under The Bridge
I never cease to be amazed at what can be passed under the radar.