Rated: E · Fiction · Contest Entry · #2141959
James looked around the living room. “This house is fine” he said to the realtor, “Any idea who the guy is in that picture?” He pointed to a large framed portrait over the fire place.”
“Sorry,” the relator said, “I’m new.”
“Not important. He just looks so sad, almost mean.” The realtor left.
James planned to take a week for ‘sun and fun,’ but an idea had come to him so intensely that he had to get it down. He actually imagined a life for the man in the picture as soon as he laid eyes on it. The idea came full blown. It was intoxicating. He literally wrote for three solid weeks.
When finished, he reread it, yet there was nothing to edit, every word was perfect. He sent it off to his publisher.
His publisher called.
“You’ve got to be kidding.” he said.
“You don’t like it?” James said, in shock, he’d felt it was his best work so far.
“I did like it.”
“I liked it in school when I read it for the first time. You can’t plagiarize an old book!”
“Autumn Leaves, by Andrew White? Didn’t you read him in school?”
“I read something by him once, I wasn’t a fan...”
Later, James downloaded Autumn Leaves. Reading it quickly, it truly was the same book he thought he’d just written! He was in shock. Maybe it had just stuck in his head, though he was positive he didn’t remember ever reading it.
He sat down in front of his computer again, thankfully another idea had been ruminating in his head for the last week, he began typing furiously.
Over the mantle, the portrait of Andrew White was grinning like the Cheshire cat.