Feeling Like A Fool

I’m not a big fan of April Fools Day, in general.  I don’t like to see people taken advantage of, and I think that too many April Fools jokes have meanness at their core, instead of cleverness.  (That said, I have laughed at many a well-thought-out “gotcha”, over the years.)

April Fools Day, though, has a very special place in my writing life.  April Fools Day, in 1999, was the day that I received my first-ever offer on a novel.  My agent sent me email in the middle of the afternoon, saying “I’m heading out of the office for the day, but I wanted you to know that Roc has made an offer on THE GLASSWRIGHTS’ APPRENTICE.  The editor wanted to know if you had any sequels, and I told her you had two.  Talk to you tomorrow.”

I shrieked.  I jumped up and down.  I ran out of my office and dragged in a colleague, so that she could read the screen and tell me if the words really said what I thought they said.  I panicked, because I’d never even dreamed of writing a sequel in the Glasswrights world.

It wasn’t until about five hours later, as I was sitting in a theater, watching an unspeakably bad murder mystery (where they told you, right in the prologue, that Matthew Broderick dunnit) that I realized it was April Fools Day.  I was glad that they’d already disclosed the killer, because I couldn’t pay any attention at all to the interminable second act of that play.  I was certain that my agent was the Cruelest Man In The World.

My agent isn’t the Cruelest Man In The World.  And I still smile every year, when April Fools Day rolls around.  And I enjoy telling people the story of how I got The Call.

How about you?  What is your favorite April Fools story?  Bonus points if it involves reading or writing!

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There are 11 comments. Get the RSS feed for comments on this entry.

  1. 1. Wen Prior

    No reading or writing, I’m afraid. I did manage to have an entire baby on April Fools Day, though. I had a bit of a struggle convincing his father I was really in labor and not pulling a prank, however.

    I’d had so many false alarms that both of us believed it was probably another. I guess that was my son’s ultimate joke, to bluff us so many times that we almost left going to the hospital too long.

    He loves his birthday. Whenever someone asks him what day his birthday is on, he always replies, “April Fools Day, more jokes than presents.”

  2. 2. Elias McClellan

    Ms. Klasky an excellent memory and gift to share. Thank you.

  3. 3. Marie Brennan

    My first novel came out on April Fool’s Day. So I feel ya. :-)

  4. 4. karen wester newton

    Coincidentally, Amazon delivered WHEN GOOD WISHES GO BAD to my Kindle at 3:07 am today! The April Fool’s book streak continues!

  5. 5. hampshireflyer

    Well, there was the year my entire family conspired to ring up my mum’s workplace in a succession of different regional accents. Maybe that counts as oral tradition? :)

  6. 6. heteromeles

    I thought April 1 was Writers Drink Free Day. At least it is around here.

  7. 7. Mindy Klasky

    ::grin::
    I suppose that there are more writer-stories about April Fools Day than people might expect because books traditionally come out on the first Tuesday of the month, which’ll be April Fools Day around 1/7th of the time!
    Wen – fun story – I have a cousin who waited too long to head to the hospital and ended up delivering by the side of the road! (Not that we’d ever call her a “fool” :-)
    Karen – I hope you enjoy GOOD/BAD!
    Hampshire – I love your suggestion!
    Heteromeles – I like the way you think. Make mine a vodka tonic, lots of lime!

  8. 8. Mary

    IBM always makes announcements on Tuesday except when it’s April Fool’s, when they shift to Wednesday. Sensible folks.

  9. 9. Mindy Klasky

    Mary – I have to say, I think that’s shrewd corporate policy. At the same time, I wonder what we’ve gotten ourselves into, that official communication has to be shifted that way!

  10. 10. Kyle Maxwell

    My story is sort of like Wen’s, except earlier in the process: my wife told me that day that she was in fact pregnant with our first child (and I had no doubt she wasn’t fooling), though when we told our families, some of them doubted us for that day.

    So as much as I hate what the day means to most people, it’s a quietly special day for us.

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Author Information

Mindy Klasky

Mindy Klasky is the author of eleven novels, including WHEN GOOD WISHES GO BAD and HOW NOT TO MAKE A WISH in the As You Wish Series. She also wrote GIRL'S GUIDE TO WITCHCRAFT, SORCERY AND THE SINGLE GIRL, and MAGIC AND THE MODERN GIRL, about a librarian who finds out she's a witch. Mindy also wrote the award-winning, best-selling Glasswrights series and the stand-alone fantasy novel, SEASON OF SACRIFICE. Visit site.

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