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Ghosts I have Met and Some Others

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Author Topic: Ghosts I have Met and Some Others  (Read 555 times)
Keeper of the Seven Keys
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« Reply #105 on: November 03, 2009, 02:19:17 am »

"Fool!" it said, "how can you hesitate? Here is your position: you
have made a contract which must be filled; you are already behind,
and in a hopeless mental state. Even granting that between this and
to-morrow morning you could put together the necessary number of
words to fill the space allotted to you, what kind of a thing do you
think that story would make? It would be a mere raving like that
other precious effort of August. The public, if by some odd chance
it ever reached them, would think your mind was utterly gone; your
reputation would go with that verdict. On the other hand, if you do
not have the story ready by to-morrow, your hold on the _Idler_ will
be destroyed. They have their announcements printed, and your name
and portrait appear among those of the prominent contributors. Do
you suppose the editor and publisher will look leniently upon your
failure?"

"Considering my past record, yes," I replied. "I have never yet
broken a promise to them."

"Which is precisely the reason why they will be severe with you.
You, who have been regarded as one of the few men who can do almost
any kind of literary work at will--you, of whom it is said that your
'brains are on tap'--will they be lenient with _you?_ Bah! Can't you
see that the very fact of your invariable readiness heretofore is
going to make your present unreadiness a thing incomprehensible?"

"Then what shall I do?" I asked. "If I can't, I can't, that is all."

"You can. There is the story in your hands. Think what it will do
for you. It is one of the immortal stories--"

"You have read it, then?" I asked.

"Haven't you?"

"Yes--but--"
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