Men will hate it because from their point of view the main character — I hesitate to call her the heroine — is a manipulative bitch. (Although they might want to consider what made her one.)
Women who (unrealistically) want happy endings will hate it because it doesn’t have one.
Anyone who actually enjoys reading about manipulative bitches hoist on their own petards (the biter bit, as it were) will probably hate it because it’s long, long, longer than any blog post — even one tagged WP Longform — has a right to be. You can’t possibly take it to the john for a quick read on your iPad. 6,000+ words? You’re kidding, right?
So if you’re one of the two or three people who actually plan on looking for this hateful story in your Reader or e-mail, just be aware you’re going to have to sit down somewhere comfortable and devote real time to reading it, as if you found it in a high-class literary journal.
Which is where I initially planned for it to be found. But although the members of a writing group who read it several years ago all thought it was a page-turner (when it was on real pages, and not a screen), the much younger fiction editors of those high-class literary journals where it has been slowly — oh so very slowly — making the rounds have not been similarly enthusiastic. Printed form rejection slips. Not even a kind penciled word.
I’m getting too old for that sort of old-fashioned nonsense, even if you can now submit [to most of them] online. While there’s a saving on postage stamps, the online processing fee balances things out. And the waiting-around afterwards doesn’t get any quicker. Art may be long, but life is short, believe me.
And I have a blog.
Yes, it’s a real story. In the third person. Not just “Getting Old” me nattering on. But it takes place at a time when I was young. So please don’t try to find out if the manipulative bitch was me. My policy with “fiction” has always been, “You don’t ask, I don’t tell.” In any event, the best thing to think, whatever else you think, is “She does write well, though.”
Look for it tomorrow! “Sophie Before Feminism!”
Bet you can hardly wait.