THE BOOK I WILL WRITE by John Henry Fleming is a serial novel-in-emails about a would-be writer named John Henry Fleming who is desperate to publish a book. THE BOOK I WILL WRITE is a work in progress; readers are invited to make comments and influence the outcome. Fleming has been exchanging emails with an editorial assistant and a senior editor at Knopf, as well as with an agent. He’s been kicked out of his apartment, and is living at the library following a kidnapping episode with The Zeppelin Society. Now he’s being stalked by the murderous son of Reid Markham, the author of The Devil’s Good Graces, a book Fleming is trying to track down and read as an influence to his own, still unwritten, novel.
Dear Mr. Lemming F,
Here at the Boo-Boo Kittenbunny Pet Shoppe you can pet cuddly animals all day and night! Three words: O. M. G.
Who doesn’t love a kittenbunny, as well as puppies and other creatures pretty much totally bred for snuggling?
We think there’s something wrong with you if you don’t. We mean, what kind of person would you be? We would not want to associate with you. We might want to pass laws against you. Incarceration isn’t so farfetched.
Also, at the Boo-Boo Kittenbunny Pet Shoppe, there are no unsnuggly creatures to repulse you. Spiders and snakes. Rats with their ugly hairless worm-tails. Not even birds!
Because birds, if you pluck their feathers, aren’t so different from rats. We tried this once. Because we needed to make sure our customers wouldn’t be repulsed if they took the bird home and the feathers fell off naturally or by accident, like from disease.
Kittenbunnies, etc., aren’t as repulsive with their hair removed, so you’re okay there.
You’ve probably heard by now that Main Street is undergoing a kind of renaissance. Out of the recession and into the new boom. The Chamber of Commerce is even thinking up slogans to publicize this, things like “Spend, People!” or “By the Time You Have to Pay That Off, You’ll Be Rich, Bi-otch!” They’ll want public input. You can vote.
We’ll probably vote, too, when we’re lucid.
So what’s stopping you? Think of the poor kittenbunnies, so alone and bereft of human touch. How will they ever survive without the petting they have been genetically engineered to warmly receive? They’re so cold they’re whimpering! Their little kittenbunny hearts beat hundreds of times a minute just for you!
We do mean you in the specific sense. We didn’t just pick your name out of the phone book. We did our research. We identified you as a perfect match. We also hired kittenbunny whisperers who told us the kittenbunnies like you and want to go out with you. Like to a park or whatever.
Come visit our new store today and be a part of the downtown renaissance and also a part of all things good in this world, which means not being a part of the bad things, because the line runs directly through kittenbunny-petting and you do not want to be on the bad side of that line. Trust us.
Just beyond the Special Friendly Cuddle-Time Bookshoppe is a little alley, and in the alley is a little stairway, at the top of which is a rusting blue door. Walk past the little stairway to a little parking area in back. There’s a dumpster there. Behind the dumpster is where the kittenbunnies’ little hearts are beating. We didn’t mean to mislead you when we said we had a store. We’re working on it. We just feel we need to get the kittenbunnies petted first, like ASAP, and then we’ll get them moved in. Space is hard to come by right now, anyway, due to the Boom, etc.
Oh! Hurry! We think one of the kittenbunnies is losing hope! We think his little heart is slowing to a depressive thud and he’s losing the will to live. All he ever wanted in his little kittenbunny life was to be petted. Will you deny him that?
We didn’t think so. See you soon!
Your friends at the Boo-Boo Kittenbunny Pet Shoppe