Roald Dahl Revisited, and More

In today’s Journal

* Quotes of the Day
* Roald Dahl Revisited
* Short Stories
* It’s Good to Be the King
* Of Interest

Quotes of the Day

“Following the publisher’s logic would be equal to transforming the M˜y Lai Massacre into a misunderstanding with unpleasant consequences that shouldn’t be discussed because it’s too upsetting for some people.” Jeffrey Herman in an article about so-called sensitivity readers (see “Of Interest”)

“It costs much, much less to hire a literary attorney to examine the contract before you sign it than it does to hire that same attorney to get you and your book(s) out of a publishing contract after you’ve signed it.” The Passive Guy (see “Of Interest”)

“Write what should not be forgotten.” Isabel Allende

Roald Dahl Revisited

Thanks to KC for sending me a link to an article in the National Review: “Roald Dahl Publisher Relents after Backlash over Censorship: ‘Readers Will Be Free to Choose’.” You can read the article at

In part, the article reads that “the British publisher of [Dahl’s] books has relented, agreeing to publish Dahl’s classic texts side by side with the new, edited versions.”

Francesca Dow, managing director of Penguin Random House Children’s, explained, “By making both Puffin and Penguin versions available, we are offering readers the choice to decide how they experience Roald Dahl’s magical, marvellous stories.”

How very gracious and not at all pretentious of the publisher to grant that “readers will be free to choose” which version they want to buy.

Not to be nitpicky, but deciding to publish the “classic” version alongside the heavily edited version is not “relenting.” To “relent” the publisher would have to trash the edited version and publish only the classic version. But that won’t happen, because some folks just have to feel that position of power, that right to give others options from among which they may choose.

Short Stories

Yesterday in my inbox I received my own short story, “The Death of Federico Parizzi.” Great fun. Yes, I’m subscribed to my Story of the Week. Because I seldom rememeber much about any story or novel I write for more than a week, it’s great fun to receive them in my in box.

To receive the stories in your inbox, visit, then click on any story title, then scroll to the bottom of the story and click the Subscribe link. That URL is also the RSS feed.

Anyway, I realized that was the last of the stories I had pre-posted for release. So I went to work and posted several more. As a bonus for those of you who enjoy my fiction, this time I posted a group of previously unpublished stories.

I wrote all of them during 2020 and 2021 and simply hadn’t published them yet. And no, other than correcting a typo here and there, I didn’t change them at all before I posted them to both my StanbroughWrites website and to the Substack version.

Tomorrow I’ll finish posting the new, previously unpublished stories in my files. Those postings will make stories available every week well into May and maybe June. If you haven’t subscribed yet and you want some fun reading, hop aboard. It’s free.

It’s Good to Be the King

Stephen King

When all the coronavirus stuff first started, some guy tweeted (I’m paraphrasing) “I wonder whether this virus will be as bad as Captain Tripps in The Stand.”

Stephen King himself tweeted in reply, “No, this is nothing like Captain Tripps. if you just wash your hands often, you’ll be fine.”

To which the original tweeter replied, “How the hell would you know? Have you even read The Stand?”

To my knowledge and surprise, King didn’t honor him with a response.

JRR Tolkein

Then yesterday, my wife found this meme on Facebook. I thought it was too good not to share:


So there.

Talk with you again soon.

Of Interest

See “Special Stretch Goal and Running Pictures” at Special Kickstarter stuff.

See “8 New Novels that Envision an Alternate Future” at I actually bought the short story collection.

See “When Your Publishing Contract Flies a Red Flag: Clauses to Watch Out For” at If you’re dumb enough or fortunate enough to land a traditional publishing contract, please, please, please hire an attorney to read it for you.

The Numbers

The Journal…………………………………… 720 words

Writing of Wes Crowley: Deputy US Marshal 2 (WCG9SF4)

Day 1…… 3231 words. Total words to date…… 3231
Day 2…… 2990 words. Total words to date…… 6221
Day 3…… 1805 words. Total words to date…… 8026
Day 4…… 2025 words. Total words to date…… 10051

Total fiction words for February……… 1089
Total fiction words for 2023………… 47962
Total nonfiction words for February… 18750
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 39100
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 87062

Calendar Year 2023 Novels to Date…………………… 1
Calendar Year 2023 Novellas to Date……………… 0
Calendar Year 2023 Short Stories to Date… 0
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)…………………………………… 72
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)………………………………… 8
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)………………… 217
Short story collections……………………………………………… 31

Disclaimer: Because It Makes Sense, I preach trusting your characters to tell the story that they, not you, are living. Duh. See My Best Advice for Fiction Writers at

4 thoughts on “Roald Dahl Revisited, and More”

  1. The Roald Dahl issue is another reason why I’ll never, as long as I live, sign with a traditional publisher. What gives them the right to even consider changing any of his work simply because some people are butt hurt over it? And to publish both ‘side by side’ is laughably stupid.
    How about they publish the original unaltered and, like you mention, trash the edited version.

    This age of censorship over hurt feelings isn’t going to end well. Free speech and the right to freedom of expression should come before all else, whether you hurt someone’s feelings or not. I have been offended by certain books or films but I would never think of trying to ‘cancel’ them. I simply move on and make sure never to read or watch them again.
    Why these types of people who complain about Dahl’s work can’t do the same is beyond me.

    • Spoken like the guy in the mirror, Matt. I have trouble enough trying to contol all my own stuff without trying to control anyone else’s.

    • Totally agree, Matthew. If I don’t like something, for whatever reason, I just move on to the next thing and don’t watch/read that again, or read that author again if it’s a book I didn’t like. I don’t try to get anyone cancelled or censored because I don’t like their material.

      I agree, too, about this being yet another reason to NOT let any traditional publishers touch my books. I don’t even want to think about what damage they’d caused to my stories in some stupid attempt to make it as non-offensive to everyone in the entire world. Eeks.

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