I was idly drumming my fingers on the mouse, trying to think of how to get to the next plot point, when my cell rang. It was Uncle Billy.
"When are you going to start answering your text messages?" he asked.
"How are you, Uncle," I responded.
"Okay, I get it ... you aren't."
"Let's not get into this right now ... what did you want?"
"I wanted to know if you'd read Clara's manuscript."
"Yeah, she's been writing a book and when I told her you were an author, she asked if you'd look at her stuff and see what you thought."
Good grief. "What's it about?"
"How should I know? I haven't read it," he said.
"You haven't? But you're her friend."
"Sonny, I don't have time to read an unproven author ... I haven't even read your books."
"Yeah, I know, thanks."
"So, are you going to read it or not?"
"Well, I don't know ... I'm pretty busy right now."
"So you want me to tell her that my nephew, the author, isn't interested in reading her manuscript?"
"Come on, Uncle, that's not fair."
"Okay, I'll tell her ..."
"No, no, don't do that ... I'll read it."
"You will? Thanks, Sonny, I know it'll mean a lot to her."
"What if it isn't any good?"
"That could be a problem." Uncle Billy paused. "Well, you'll think of something. I'll have her send you a pdf."
"I'm out of printer ink ... and paper ... and I don't want to read it on the computer ... can't she print out a copy for me?"
"I suppose so. When can you pick it up?"
I looked at the paragraph that had just taken me two hours to write. "I'll be over in the morning."
"Great, Sonny, I really appreciate it."