Dud had been sitting there looking at his computer for 20 minutes and he hadn’t gotten any more done on the book. You know the one. Dud calls it “Murder in the Soggy Bottoms,” and the rest of us call it “The Duchess and the Truck Driver” because the two main characters are …. yeah, you understand.
The rest of us have only been able to look on while our pal Dudley has been going through this agony for the past several years. If we’re asked to explain the book to those not in the literary loop around here, we generally hem and haw and say something like, “I think the duchess and the truck driver love each other, and there’s some murders in it, too.”
At least, that tends to be a summation of the main theme, because we can’t see the book from Dud’s perspective. To Dud, this is the next “War and Peace” but he doesn’t want it to be that long. Also, to Dud, sitting there at his computer now for 26 minutes, he has no idea what his characters would do for 800 pages. He is still trying to figure out how to keep them busy for 300, and that hasn’t come easily.
You see, the truck driver (he’s a handsome guy, of course) is on special assignment to the European country where the duchess (naturally drop-dead gorgeous) lives. Dud hasn’t figured out the special assignment yet, either, but it beats having his hero haul groceries in the middle of the United States. And the duchess, well, turns out she had a love child by the truck driver when he was over there 20-some years ago on his last special assignment. And the truck driver doesn’t know he has a European son, but the duchess knows. Well, of course the duchess knows. I mean, she was there as the dukelet’s mom all those years, right?
So how do we reconnect them? Well, maybe his truck could accidental crash into her castle?
Or she could open a truck wash down at the truck stop … no, that doesn’t seem duchess-like. But Dud’s been sitting here looking at his computer for half an hour now. Know what? There’s a football game coming on television.
Later on, maybe …
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