It is a real horror to have you at (bookstore) to speak about your book “Wind Thief “.
I read the email a few more times to make sure my eyes had seen correctly. I thought, Gads, but some people have no talent for written communications. I envisioned an overworked, under-paid man who dealt mostly with numbers and rarely got out of a small, cramped office. A chagrined data man tired of working with artsy, moody, pain in the tuchus authors. Then I had a good laugh, because really, even if outrageous, the message was highly entertaining, and how often is email entertaining?
I adopted what I hoped was a gosh, what a strange thing to say, but let's get on with the business arrangements tone while writing a response to the man:
Wow! That's impressively negative, but what I assume you mean is that arranging to get my book is more of a hassle than getting books through a main distributor. Fortunately I have a one-phone-call solution for you...
Still unable to believe the situation, I sent the original email to my husband and began shaking the moment I read his response:
I don't see the word 'horror.'
I rechecked the book buyer's email and sure enough, where I'd read "the horror" — three times in a row — I looked closer and realized the word was "honor."
He was honored to have me at the bookstore!
To which my husband, ever brilliant in supplying an appropriately literary response, quipped:
The moral of the story?
Get a new email font where the "n" doesn't look like two "r"s mashed together.
(You'll be happy to know the book buyer is a lovely person with a good sense of humor and a forgiving heart.)