By Chris Gay
(Published in Writer’s Digest, February 2011)
19 December 1843
Dear Mr. Charles Dickens:
Regretfully, we have elected to reject A CHRISTMAS CAROL.
Our primary issue is its preposterous main premise. We will grant that readers may indeed be willing to accept the idea of four omnipotent ghosts returning to Earth to do good for the betterment of mankind. However, it stretches the boundaries of credibility to their very limits to expect anyone to believe a CEO would repent his ways via voluntary monetary penance. Pay his secretary’s mortgage? Double his salary? Are you certain, Mr. Dickens, that you did not intend to submit this manuscript to our humor publishing subsidiary?
Furthermore, though we respect your sincere attempt to present the public with an uplifting, enduring yuletide classic, we feel any positive message your literary work may convey will ultimately be overshadowed by its extension of the waning popularity of plum pudding at Christmas. Quite frankly plum pudding sucks, and we do not wish to bear any responsibility for inflicting more such pudding on England for decades to come.
Another issue we have with A CHRISTMAS CAROL is that of Ebenezer Scrooge’s so-called “redemption.” It is more of a self preservation, is it not? The unamiable Mr. Scrooge sees fit to dole out tongue lashings and biting sarcasm to the three timid yet good-natured apparitions he encounters first. Only when the final specter, Death, pays him a visit does Scrooge’s tune change, and right quick. Really Mr. Dickens, would you have us believe that his reaction to the Grim Reaper’s ultimatum is in actuality some earnest conversion? Nice try.
In conclusion, it is our belief that the greatest impact A CHRISTMAS CAROL could have would be as various movie adaptations. Unfortunately, the old saying “Timing is everything!” is particularly relevant in your case, as motion pictures are still half a century away. In fact, Alastair Sim won’t even be born for another 57 years. Sorry. If it serves as any consolation, I will be required to read your unbearably lengthy “GREAT EXPECTATIONS,” sometime around 1990.
Christopher J Gay
Senior Editor/Sarcastic Prodigy
What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.
* * * *
As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.
Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.
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The Bachelor Cookbook is the perfect (and likely only) addition to any guy’s collection of sarcastic culinary literature. If you’re between relationships and looking to make the most of whatever foodstuffs you’ve got until you meet that next special woman, then your prayers have been answered. Unless you’re an atheist; in which case coming across this book just means your luck was in today. For men looking for sustenance over style, I give you this spectacular cookbook. Well, I don’t “give it” to you, per se. You have to pay for it.
Featuring such taste-bud tempting recipes as:
Meat on a Bed of Rice
Cheese and Crackers
Plus Miscellaneous Cookbook Humor, too!
* * * *
Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. He writes and broadcasts a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s also written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance, the novella Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, (an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective) and three humor books: And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and is currently writing his fourth, fifth and sixth humor books, Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, Something Witty this Way Comes and Politically Correct Movie Reviews. Also, he’s writing the Ghost of a Chance sequel Perdition’s Wrath, and has written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com, and his humor blog can be found at chrisgay.wordpress.com.
2012: Hope Springs (Barfly)