Cut From Novel

Ah, revision. The time when you cut the scenes you love for the greater good. Sigh. Here’s a cut from today, a phone conversation between Kosey, my protagonist, and his old boss, Ms. Vogel. Of course, it makes more sense in the context of the novel. But, then again, I like it, as is:

*

“Yes,” I said. “I have my addresses.”

“Well, then,” Ms. Vogel said. “What are you waiting for?”

I said nothing.

“Kosey,” she said. “Listen. When I was younger I was hitchhiking with Joseph Heller in southern France, a hundred kilometers outside of Marseille. We were practically kids, you know—and we didn’t have any money. I mean none, at all. We were out in the countryside. We needed to get to the city, to make some money. But we couldn’t get there without any money.”

“And?” I turned the index card over in my hands.

“Well,” Ms. Vogel said, “it was a logical paradox. We were in a double bind, Kosey. But then we went out onto the highway and we stuck out our thumbs and a driver stopped for us. A bus driver. Route number 22.”

I paused. “You caught 22?” I said.

“Exactly,” she said. “And you know the rest of the story. So: Unless you get out there in the world, you never know when the right thing will come along.”

And then—without saying anything else—Ms. Vogel hung up the phone.

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