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Publishing Pratfalls Part Three
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Why not make my commentary on the demise of IBooks into a trilogy? I can call it The Whine Chronicles, or The Kvetch-Bringer Saga.

I used to read and try to write sf and fantasy so I know about trilogies. I guess today you need to write trilogies of trilogies. The necessary number of books it takes to tell a story keeps multiplying, like the moons of the outer planets which I can't keep up with either.

Anyway, when I complained about how publishers and magazines had a propensity for going out of business I forgot to mention that sometimes they inconveniently change their focus.

Once upon a time, when I was still aspiring to place a sf story somewhere -- anywhere! -- I found something that vaguely resumbled a magazine, from its description in Gila Queen at least so I zipped off my latest masterwork, a kind of Fortean time travel story.

And lo, it was accepted!

Talk about frogs falling out the sky.

I can't recall the name of the magazine, but I do recall weeks passed, then months. There was no word. No new issues appeared. Eventually I chalked it up to another magazine lost in the Bermuda Circle of publishing. Until about two years later when there arrived in the mail a letter from the editor who had bought -- well, OK, had said he'd print -- my story.

"Sorry," he said, as near as I can recall, "but we've changed the direction of our publication a bit. I still really like your story and I think it would fit our new focus if you could make some changes. We've decided to shift from hard sf to hard core erotica. Could you add a lot of explicit sex?"

I declined. I mean, how could I? True, I wasn't getting paid, but still...

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