SOC Chapter 13: "Max Drops In"

One of the most interesting lessons I've learned as I've been going back over my work of twenty years ago is the fallibility of memory. For all this time, I'd remembered that this chapter held one particularly infelicitous turn of phrase, which I was eager for the chance to edit out; whenever I thought of it, it made me wince, being so pedestrian and unfulfilled. While I don't always turn up my nose at pedestrian, routine prose betrays a lack of vision and a wasted opportunity. Not that prose has to be fancy to work - to the contrary, more often than not - but to settle for a cheap stock reference means the writer hasn't done his job. Imagine my surprise, then, to discover that I had already edited away this unfortunate episode prior to the original publication, and that the only place this unfortunate glitch remained was in my own annoyingly erratic mind. It was almost enough to make me want to try to dredge up the old royalty statements and see if I had imagined the lack of sales, too, but some things are too traumatic to be fabricated.

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