I Can Read You Like a Book

He snatched a bottle of water from the commode and drained it voraciously, like Paris is about to set off for Sparta to capture Helen. After a brief pause, he carried on emotionally, “Shogo, I have to tell you something that perhaps you won’t like to heart it. So please don’t be offended and don’t take it in a wrong way. I just want to help you and want to give you some advice for the anticipation of your brand new career. I know that you’re a downright artist, but I must do this, for you don’t know anything about business. First of all, you’d better know that you’re being in a book business right now whether you like it or not. I know that you just want to write and don’t care about money, but you need to sell your book for living. Just hear me out, my friend; I can make you prepare for what you’ll be against in the future. Secondly, it’s extremely great that your book will be published; however, don’t dwell on your first achievement longer than necessary, for this is nothing by comparing to what you’re going to become. What you should know the most is that it’ll take a time for you to be recognized as a writer; it’ll actually take longer than you think. It’ll take a time, because you’re a novice writer, and nobody has known of your book yet. Of course, I expect that your book will be shining distinguishably like a distant star eventually, and you’ll be definitely recognized one of great artists in our contemporary time someday. But it’ll take a time, as I told you. Consequently, you’ll have to be patient and stop thinking of being recognized at once, for your mind has to be focused on only one thing: writing. You must keep on writing books and improving yourself. In addition, if you want to make a living by writing, you have to listen to me. You should be aware of the competition, which you’ve just stepped in, is incredibly huge. Just imagine how many authors have published books and how many books are in the market? Do you know how many authors are famous? I’m asking you these imperative questions, so that you can visualize how huge your battle field is and what you’ve just stepped in. I want you to realize that people prefer to read famous authors instead of reading a new author. I’ve been working for companies and running my model agency for several years. And what I’ve learned from these vital experiences is that clients are always right – I need to listen to them. I know that you don’t like thinking of a mass and want to write for specific people, but you can’t focus on only selective readers. Here is my advice to you: every person is a potential reader, so you have to think of them as well. And one more thing, you have to put your feet on the floor all the time even if your book becomes a bestseller. I’m telling you this, since I’ve known of you for ten years. Believe me, Shogo, I know about you more than anybody else; I can read you like a book, ha-ha-ha…. At any rate, I know that you’ll knock down a number of books, and one of them will be a best seller someday – that’s why I’m warning you. If you lose your feet from the floor in the future, I’ll kick your Japanese flat ass in order to make you come back to the reality and put your feet on the floor again. This is my ultimate duty as a friend. Shogo, please don’t take this as a reproach; on the contrary, I just want to help you. If I, Gerardo Veloz as your friend, tell you about sharp opinions and very straight stuff, which you might be hard to swallow, in order to open your eyes more easily in the future, don’t be offended and please indulge yourself in hearing me out. Just because I’m always regard about your welfare and sincerely wish you all the best.”

Pause.

“For the love of God, are you done?” I uttered with beseeching eyes.

“Yap. I believe that I just gave you my best shot,” he nodded complacently.

I lit a cigarette afresh and exclaimed, “By Jove! You, son of bitch, just gave me a mouthful speech at such an ungodly hour! It’s almost 2:00 a.m., man! Couldn’t you simply wait and save it till tomorrow? Didn’t it cross your fragile mind that I might be dog-tired of listening to such a buzz speech right now?”

“Shut your trap up, man! I’ve let you stay at my castle and nourished you. And to cap it all, I’ve just given you the greatest advice on the face of earth for your brand new career! I expected that you would thank me with grateful tears in your eyes, but not like this! Son of bitch, you’re decidedly incogitable, ha-ha-ha….”