Analyzing Dave’s reply, I didn’t understand what he meant by “great people.” Whatever he meant, I must say that all people on earth are great, no matter how wretched.
I didn’t understand why Dave again gave me his resume and the schedule of his duties. What makes him insist on thinking that I don’t know who he is and what he does? What do I have to do with his duties? When he answered my letter, I presumed he knew all about his duties. Does he answer everyone who writes to him, thoughtless of each affair? My affairs are so many and full of difficulties, but I can’t count all my condemned misfortunes to him in this matter between him and I. Crying to him isn’t my goal. I just want a chance to show no matter how late, I learned to read and write and understand, and all great people can learn in this conflicting ocean of prejudice, love, and hate. There are a lot of miseries in my true story, but nonetheless it’s a story of triumph about the endeavors of a human being who had nothing to lose but go in search of knowledge; and no matter when, maybe even after I am dead, I’ll do everything in my power to make my story go through gods’ pitiful ears. I’ll work hard to see my books read by everyone. I’ll work hard to contribute for the best of us great people. Isn’t Dave a publisher? His wife isn’t listed in his to-do list as his little child is. At least he is my supporter, and said I will get what I want. He might have read the excerpts of my novel then, so why wouldn’t he tell me his opinion of them?
“Who knows what he read or didn’t read?” Daryl reminded me. “I think he lost your work and would rather blame you and cast you away because he is too proud to admit he lost your manuscript.”
“He’s a teacher for kids, Daryl! If he lost my work, all he had to do is say he lost it. I don’t believe Dave would reprove an innocent pupil for his own mistake. Would he, my Daryl?”
“Regina,” Daryl answered, “its human nature to hide personal mistakes. People stubbornly blame their mistakes on anyone instead of admitting their shortcomings.”
What a strange supporter, then… All I needed was for him to be a peaceful judge and read my work and tell me his honest judgment so I could fix anything possibly wrong, because I want to do right. On the Internet, Dave says he likes new art. Is he prejudice of my new art?
Isn’t he a writer, teacher, builder, and philanthropist? Don’t I have enough dignity for his giving nature? I sent my work to him by mail because he asked me to. What did he mean that he can’t read every work that comes through the mail to him? Did he forget that he asked me to send my work to him? His excuses sound like those of Homer Simpson.
So, now, of course, I must reply to him. I couldn’t tell Dave about my frustration, frustration he unnecessarily caused me. He may not accept his defect, but I needed to light the mind of my teacher toward his own reason. I knew he finally said no, but I started to compose my last e-mail after all this deep meditation, careful not to say a word out of reason to my professor. I don’t want his hate against me after all, but just his conciliation:
From: "Regina Edelman"
To: "Dave Eggers"
Sent: Friday, April 19, 2008 6:50 PM
Subject: Enid News & Eagle, Enid, OK 7.12.1998
Good heavens you didn't cast me out! It's such good news for me, it really is. You couldn't be a crazy philanthropist... Thank you very much to be already my supporter. On the other hand is sad to know your little girl sees the father she dearest love, I can assure, for so short period of time, for to do business requires much trouble in our time. I like your writing pretty much, if you allow me an advice, you should keep being as a writer, but I know you are a challenger of time and want as well the business. Master time with no forgiveness reckless don't wait for nothing or any of us and when you see your girl won't be little anymore.
As for my book, can you recommend me to Eli Horowitz that he read my book in submission to your publishing company? It doesn't need editing, my husband already edited, maybe needs a light proof though. Don't you have any opinion about the two excerpts I've sent to you? Can't you recommend me to your agent to read my whole work? How much that could take of your busy time? Dave, you know how hard it is to get a positive answer as I got from you from other writers, editors, publishers or peers who could help to publish my book, and I thought you are a publisher with editors scheduled to read what was accepted almost a year ago, unless you don't want to publish my book? I assure you, you will be the most famous philanthropist around earth if you do so. Can you reasonably ponder my questions and let me know your thoughts on them?
Again, thank you for your time. If you need my manuscript, I will send again.
Long experience has taught me this about the status of mankind with regard to matters requiring thought: the less people know and understand, the more positively they attempt to argue, while on the other hand, to know and understand a multitude of things renders men cautious in passing judgment upon anything new.
To be continued…