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Black Sheep, the Half Life in Germany

It has been a while since Black Sheep was published. I had a steady stream of small little royalties that would drift in every six months. Ten, fifteen bucks. The kind of cheque it isn't worth cashing because it costs you more to do so, you know? Either way, I think the book is pretty much out of print these days, though that doesn't stop the occasional email about it coming.

One of them was from a company in Germany that is printing Finale Prüfungstraining, Zentralabitur 2012 Englisch NRW, and which includes a two page excerpt from the book in it. I figure this is because the same excerpt was used in the exam a few years ago, which was a strange story to hear, but which allowed me to go and give a speech about how I enjoyed the idea of German's being made to read my work. I never know what to ask for a few pages reprinted like that, so I don't stress it. If I was being honest, I steal enough material off the net and out of books for my own education purposes that I figure fair is fair. Maybe I'm wrong in that, but I'm cool with it if I am. Besides, these few pages get reprinted in a print run the book never saw, and a whole bunch of kids read it and hate it in that way that students hate all their education texts--much in the way children hate peas and carrots and their parents music--and that makes me more than happy.

It's funny how a book can keep alive, though. Like you got no say in it either way.

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