By Julie Eberhart Painter
'Twas the night before deadline and all through the house
No software was stirring, not even my mouse.
The research was sitting all snug in a file
For references handy to notes I'd compiled.
The children were grownups >Twas time to create
For artistic achievement, it's never too late.
I wore no kerchief, my husband no cap,
That's totally unnecessary when you're taking a nap.
I'd just nodded off when a noise loud and clear
Interrupted my slumber, my nap disappeared.
And out on the rooftop there came a loud racket
I sat up in my chair. "We're expecting a packet?"
But what to my horrified eyes should appear
But a feline intruder, who grinned ear to ear.
His eyes were all bugged, his lips, red and scary
I jumped from my lounger; no time did I tarry.
He ran toward my office, my work to attack.
I heard a loud clatter and then a big crack.
He streaked to the keyboard and leaped with a clatter.
I flew to my Windows XP, "What's the matter?"
Catbert stood perched with paws fairly flying.
"My book is deleting!" I heard myself crying.
And there in the email that I thought was protected
A McAfee note proclaimed, "Virus Detected."
The book was erasing, one byte at a time,
"Champagne will fire me. I'll get not a dime."
Quicken's tax program dissolved before me,
While The Evil HR Director ignored me.
The voltage protector was screaming in pain
The heart of my hard drive was losing its brain.
Floppies and CDS, in rank disarray,
Lay littered before me to my great dismay.
The printer kept spewing the book from before this.
"Not that one, the new one!" I barely could hiss.
He sprang on hind legs, then arching his back,
Said, "Just take the Kill Fee, you incredible hack.
Go back to your day job; stop screwing around,
And if you want a nice kitty, try accessing The Pound.
On Road Runner, on Dot coms, on AOL, too,
Get on with the havoc. We've got work to do."
And I heard him exclaim >ere he drove out of sight,
"Let's crash Mystery Writers; they deserve a good blight.
So to all you Romantics, these words of advice:
Don't write sex scenes at Christmas, that's really not nice!"
Julie Eberhart Painter, author of Mortal Coil, contributed this for the Season. Her next Champagne book will be released in May 2010. Check out Julie’s website
Monday, December 21, 2009