Okay so I'm not Little Bo Peep but it made a great title. A funny - funny strange - thing happened to me yesterday afternoon when I checked my e-mail. I found an email from the editor of a nationally distributed magazine inquiring why I had not yet returned the contract and other paperwork for an article. The answer was simple - I had never received it.
So I fired an answer back, offering to print and mail or fax back the necessary materials, blaming my mail carrier (who does have a bad habit of dropping someone else's mail into my box on occasion), and griping.
When their answer came back, they mentioned that they tried to call but that my number, which they noted, was disconnected and asked for a working number. The phone number that they had is one I haven't had for four years, since moving from the rocky hilltop in an Ozark wood to my home in what passes for small town suburbs. That clued me that they must have had that submission a long time and I realized that they must have sent all the paperwork to my old address.
So it's no wonder that I didn't receive any of it. I've got the papers printed out and will fax them later this morning so it's all beer and skittles now but the experience leaves me wondering.
Four plus years marks the longest wait time on any submission I have ever made. Now I'll keep an eye out for any wandering subs that might come home, wagging their tails behind them.