Archive for June, 2006

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What I wonder……

Andrea P. Yates is escorted from the court after being arraigned in Houston, June 22, 2001. Potential jurors in the retrial of Yates, who claims madness in the bathtub drownings of her five young children, challenged the legal definition of insanity in court Thursday, June 22, 2006. As in her first trial, Yates has pleaded innocent by reason of insanity in the June 20, 2001, drowning deaths of her children. Her earlier conviction was thrown out because of erroneous testimony. (AP Photo/Steve Ueckert, Pool)


Each time I hear of a mother murdering her children, my first thought is "why didn't she kill herself instead?" Maybe that sounds cold-hearted, but not to me, not nearly as cold-hearted as what was done instead. It seems like, even if you were totally insane, some tiny voice, some maternal sanity, some iron will, SOMETHING would kick in.

I just don't get it, I'll never get it. Yeah, people say, "She thought it was a message from God, that she was doing the right thing." Ok, but she didn't go crazy instantly, she had been ill for a long time. So even if her totally irresponsible husband didn't have the where-for-all to not leave her in charge of the children, it looks like she herself would have realized she was a danger to them and removed herself from their care, or in that moment, the one right before she agreed with God or the Devil or what the hell ever, she would have driven a butcher knife into herself before allowing her demons to win.

I just don't get it.

Now THIS is tenacity!

Does Not Suit Our Needs By Jenna Glatzer

Dear Ms. Greenburg: Thank you for your submission. Unfortunately, it does not suit our needs at this time.

Sincerely, Aurora Jackson

Senior Editor Joys of Parenting

Dear Ms. Jackson: Thanks for your note. What time might be better for you? Should I try again tomorrow at noon?

Regards, Teresa

Dear Ms. Greenburg: Thank you for your letter. To clarify, this submission is not appropriate for our magazine’s current format.

Sincerely, Aurora Jackson

Dear Ms. Jackson: Thanks for your note. Can you let me know when the current format is going to change? I mean, maybe it’ll change tomorrow at noon, right? So if I resubmit it then, it might suit your needs at that time.

Regards, Teresa

Dear Ms. Greenburg, Thank you for your letter. Our format is not expected to change anytime soon.

Sincerely, Aurora Jackson

Dear Aurora (may I call you Aurora?), Soon is such a relative term. How about next week?

Regards, Teresa (you can call me Teresa)

Dear Ms. Greenburg, You submitted a query about pig mating rituals. We are a magazine for new parents. This query is not appropriate for us.

Regards, Aurora Jackson

Dear Ms. Jackson (okay, I get the idea, you don’t want me to call you Aurora), But pigs can be parents, too. And how will they ever get to be parents if they don’t mate?

Regards, Teresa (I’m not mad. You can still call me Teresa.)

Dear Teresa, Pigs do not read our magazine.

Regards, Aurora Jackson

Dear Aurora, I’m glad we’re on a first-name basis. I think you should specify in your writers’ guidelines that you are speciesist against pigs.

Regards, Teresa

Dear Teresa, We have nothing against pigs. However, our readership is made up solely of humans.

Sincerely, Aurora

Dear Aurora, Well, that’s probably because you never run any pig stories. Give it a shot this once and you’ll see. Farmers will be clamoring to read Joys of Parenting to their livestock. I can have it completed next week. I will even include a sidebar about which types of music are best to play if you want to help your pigs get in the mood.

Regards, Teresa

Dear Teresa, I don’t believe many of our readers are farmers. Although we have no hostility toward pigs, we are not interested in any stories relating to pigs.

Sincerely, Aurora

Dear Aurora, Oh, sure, next thing you’re going to say is “some of my best friends are pigs,” and then out of the other side of your mouth, tell your daughters that they’d better never bring any pigs home with them. I see what you’re all about now, and frankly, I’m not sure I want to be associated with your magazine. How would you like it if I said I'm not interested in submitting my stories to old editors? I mean, I'm not even 30 yet, but I didn't discriminate against you because you're a senior editor.

Regards, Teresa

Dear Teresa, I’m sorry that this is the way it must end. Good luck. Also, I'm 29.

Sincerely, Aurora

Dear Aurora, That's false advertising and impersonation! I bet you try to weasel senior citizen discounts at buffets, too! And park in handicapped spots!

Regards, Teresa

Dear Teresa, Thank you for sending the police to my workplace. They determined that, in fact, my parking spot is nowhere near the handicapped section, and that I have not falsified my ID in any way. However, I did get a summons for having an ashtray at my desk, thanks to the new anti-smoking legislation.


Dear Aurora, I was hasty. As a peace offering, I am enclosing my query about the mating habits of wombats.

Regards, Teresa

Dear Teresa, Please see our new writers’ guidelines, attached. We have now clarified that we are seeking only stories about human parenting, and that we do not accept queries from anyone named Teresa Greenburg. Therefore, this does not suit our needs at this time.

Sincerely, Aurora

Dear Aurora, How about tomorrow at noon?

Regards, Teresa

Jenna Glatzer is a nationally-published freelance writer and the editor-in-chief of Absolute Write ( She is the author of Outwitting Writer's Block and Other Problems of the Pen and Words You Thought You Knew: 1001 Commonly Misused and Misunderstood Words and Phrases, as well as lots of other books that you can find here:

An FYI on story below

The Thirsty Drifter is the only Western-or even Romance-story I've ever written. I decided this morning to post it here. Maybe it will  lift someone's sagging-in-the-middle week!

Books and Bed

My choice yesterday was a good one. Though it was cloudy, it never rained, but it was cool for a Texas day in mid-June. My husband and I first stopped off at a moving sale. We found a box full of sturdy drinking glasses, some nice wine glasses, very funky, and a couple of cool books–a really nice, old cookbook and a big coffee table book with profiles of the gang from Trading Spaces.

Then we went downtown to the Farmer's Market. What a happening place! They have all kinds of shops, music, restaurants and fast food, but we had already had lunch and all we were really looking for was some good, fresh fruit. (Shane eats far too much chocolate) We got oranges, apples, nectarines, plums, a watermelon and the biggest, sweetest cantelope you've ever seen.

The downtown Dallas library is only a few blocks over. I got Joyce Carol Oates new book MISSING MOM, RUNAWAY–short stories by Alice Munro, HAUNTED–short horror stories by Chuck Papahniuk, I hear he's the best, and I got them to put my name on the waiting list for WATER FOR ELEPHANTS by Sara Gruen, a friend who's book I can't wait to read, and they also ordered AMERICAN WIVES by Beth Helms, another online friend. I was happy when I left the library.

I came home and made Tomato Cilantro Chicken and guacamole salad–oh, yeah, got the avacado at the Farmer's market too. The recipe for the chicken is the theme of the essay I recently had accepted by the Front Porch. It has romance thrown in there with the food. (that's always a good thing)

So, yeah, a wonderful day of shopping, cooking, eating and reading, and early to bed. My head is thanking me this morning that the day wasn't one of drinking and writing sad poetry.

Oh, and HAPPY FATHER'S DAY to all the dads out there!

Just had to switch back

This theme comes closest to expressing who I am, so I just gotta stick with it.

It feels like home.

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