Wow, I haven’t done that for a while…

Just sent off two stories, to two separate places. Once again, they’re both Benny and Phil stories; fortunately, they’re not the same story.

Waiting to hear back on these two is going to be even more difficult than usual. I’m trying really, really hard not to expect rejection based on the use of Phil’s POV, even though I can understand completely why they would.

After all, I didn’t think Max and Trev would ever find an audience outside of their biggest fan, and I’ve sold more Max and Trev stories than anyone else. Who’s to say that my dyslexic gangster and his bookworm baby won’t find one, too?

Ah! The Cover Letter, My Mortal Enemy.

And for once I’m not having a fit because I have no idea what the editor wants in the letter. No, this time, I’m waffling because I really want to say something about Phil and his speech patterns.

I know that, generally speaking, it’s considered a really bad sign to talk about the story in the cover letter except in the most basic of terms. (Unless the guidelines say otherwise, natch.) And with the exception of Amby, I haven’t done that — and I don’t even know if Amby counts, since all I did was include the URL for the research I did.

I love Benny and Phil, and I know that using Phil’s POV can work against me. However, it’s not as if the use of a protagonist who is intelligent but not polished/a product of an education system and whose English skills would (in this day and age) lead to a Slingerland screening test does not have literary precedent. I’m not claiming that I’m on par with Mark Twain, but I am saying that Tom Sawyer’s not exactly an Oxford grad student.

Ugh, I should know better than to try writing cover letters late at night… I just need to hurry up and figure out what (if anything) I’m going to say so I can get my stories sent off before the deadlines!

I write like…

(Shamelessly nicked from Shea Meiers, who writes lovely stuff.)

I write like
Stephen King

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Which is just strange. I fed it Nick and Brick, and this is what it comes up with? I’d absolutely love to see the comparison text, just to see how it is that my weird little faerys-and-technology story is at all like King. Other than a few mentions of blood (in a non-horror/injury context) and a couple of mentions of people being executed (in passing, you’ve read the entirety of the gory details), there’s nothing horrible or horrific in it. Granted, it needs to be polished up, but as far as I know it doesn’t have any sentence fragments masquerading as actual sentences…

So then I gave it my hockey players, which got me this:

I write like
Raymond Chandler

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Which is even more Whaaaaaaa?-inducing than Stephen King. I’ve read more Chandler than I have King, but… *Blink* Huh. In the course of looking up Phillip Marlowe‘s name, I discovered this: Underneath the wisecracking, hard drinking, tough private eye, Marlowe is quietly contemplative and philosophical and enjoys chess and poetry. While he is not afraid to risk physical harm, he does not dish out violence merely to settle scores. Which makes the comparison make a LOT more sense, to me.

So after that, I had to know what IWL would make of Benny and Phil. This is what it had to say:

I write like
Mark Twain

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Which makes perfect sense to me — I used the 1st-person POV of someone for whom grammar is one of those things they only deal with when they have to, as Twain did in Tom Sawyer. I don’t remember if Tom ever kissed Becky, but there was definitely some awkward moments of ‘um i think you’re cute’, which fits, too.

And then, just to see what would happen, I gave it Max and Trev to chew on.

I write like
Dan Brown

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Dan Brown. Dan Brown? How on God’s green-and-oily Earth do they get DAN BROWN out of 126 pages of angsty wittering, a boy in knickers and eyeliner, agrammatical Welsh, and BDSM? Unless it’s not the Dan Brown of the DaVinci Code (or he’s written some stories I’ve missed out on), which is I suppose entirely possible… Hm. Oh well; on the bright side of this result is the fact that someone somewhere said yes to Brown’s work, so there’s that.