We’re being hit with another polar vortex this winter, but that’s not why this man was wearing his scarf. You see, it was a gift– sort of, and he obtained it while traveling Russia with another friend (who, incidentally, is also a writer but more celebrated than he). The two were walking down a busy street filled to the brim with vendors of all sorts and this man’s more-successful-than-he friend was going on and on about the publishing industry and how he just doesn’t understand why the directors might pick up one of his titles and not the other, when he believes quite strongly that the ignored title is truly his best work. This man, we’ll call him Ralph and his more famous friend- Scott, began letting his eyes roam the market when Scott stopped, mid complaint, with an exclamation.
“You should get that scarf, Ralph– by God, you’ve been staring at it for bloody forever!”
Ralph, who had really only been letting his mind drift to his own publishing problems (namely, that their director hadn’t picked up any of his titles yet) and hadn’t even noticed the scarf.
“Come man, perhaps it’ll bring you luck while bringing you some style!” Scott half-joked as he half-shoved Ralph into the attention of the vendor.
Ralph purchased the scarf that day and certainly didn’t think much of it until a month later when he received a compliment on it shortly before also receiving an email from his agent about possible interest from another publishing house.
Today, nearly three years since that event, Ralph sits, unassuming, in a Starbucks he happened to locate off the airport in Buffalo, NY. He’s waiting for an email from his agent, hopefully bearing good news about the launch of his first major title.
He looks up, suddenly nervous and then fiddles, in as nonchalant a way he can manage, with his phone– refreshing the email page every few moments. Today, he’s wearing the scarf.