Leaning too far in his battered leather chair, Chuck grabbed the desk before going completely over backwards while carrying on a phone conversation. "Yes, Leota, I realize this is the fifth edit. Hang in there, this should be the last."
Turning around in his chair to face the window, he looked into the distance at Central Park. "I understand, Leota. I'm sure we can work out a satisfactory deal," Chuck said, tapping a pen on the edge of his desk.
"Now, Leota, calm down. May I remind you, this is a Christian publishing company? There's no call for using such language," he replied. "Well, Leota, actually you can't go elsewhere. We have a contract. Remember? I'm just saying, we know what sells. It's my job as your editor to help you present as near perfect a product as possible. We're almost there. I've gotta go, dear, talk to you later."
Chuck slammed the receiver down as black plastic went flying. Picking up the receiver cover off the floor, he moaned, "Oh great, I'm gonna have to explain to Purchasing why I need yet another phone."
Pulling on his worn overcoat, Chuck headed out the door. He needed to run a few errands before Gracie's big party. Gracie, a co-worker and editor, had another blockbuster book to celebrate. Gracie's clients consistently found their way to the New York Times' Best Seller List.
Walking to his car Chuck said a quick prayer, "Lord, I really have been in a dry spell lately. I know it really doesn't have to do with luck, but whatever Gracie has right now, it sure would be nice if some of that would rub off on me. "
Jumping into his ancient Cavalier convertible, Chuck drove to the bank to deposit his commission check. After signing the check, he looked at the meager amount of the check. It had been a while since he had had one of those blockbuster clients.
"Good afternoon, Mr. Reynolds. I see you work for a publishing company," Steve-the-bank-teller said. "May I be so bold as to ask what you do there?"
"Uhm, I'm an editor," Chuck responded somewhat reluctantly.
"Well, Mr. Reynolds, this is your lucky day. I'm a poet and I've been looking for someone to publish my poems. Here let me recite one for you…"
Chuck put up a hand to halt Steve, "Really, that won't be necessary. Let me give you a card…"
Completely ignoring Chuck and his card, Steve recited his poem, "I wrote this poem after my most recent break-up. 'Roses aren't always red, Violets aren't really blue, There's no such thing as true love, Especially with someone like you.' So, what do you think, Mr. Reynolds?"
Glancing back at the growing line behind him, Chuck said, "Well, short and to the point, that's for sure."
"I'm glad you like it," said a giddy Steve reaching out to shake Chuck's hand. "Next time you're in, I'll be sure and have a manuscript ready for you. There's lots more where that came from."
Not knowing what else to do, Chuck shook the young man's hand and walked away. Under his breath he chuckled, "Be sure and keep your day job, Steve. You're gonna need it."
Pulling into the full-service pump at the gas station, Chuck was greeted by Charlie. "Hey, there Mr. Reynolds. Remember me tellin' you about my brother, the wannabe writer? Well, this is your lucky day. I have a manuscript he gave me to give to you the next time you came in."
"Actually, Charlie, the best thing you could do is mail it to the address on this card," Chuck said, trying to hand him a company card.
"Shucks, Mr. Reynolds," Charlie said while cleaning the Cavalier's windshield. "Why mail it when I've got you right here in person? I'll go get it for you while the pumps still a-fillin'."
Charlie returned with two large manila envelopes just as the gas pump shut off. "Let me know what you think," Charlie shouted while waving good-bye to Chuck.
"I need to start sending someone to run my errands," Chuck said turning into the parking garage of the publishing company. "Lord, I don't need luck, I need You!"
With an hour to go before the big celebration, Chuck laid down on the sofa in his office. Picking up the brother's manuscript he began to read. After a few minutes, a smile shown on Chuck's face.
"Thank you, Lord. You indeed are faithful," he prayed.
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