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Dysfunctional Literacy Rules- “rules” being a noun, not a verb

April 23, 2011

We at Dysfunctional Literacy have very few rules at this time, but we’re making them up as we go along, so by the time we’re done (And we’re not sure when we’ll be done), there might be a lot of them.

Rule #1- There are exceptions for every rule.

Yeah, that’s not as dramatic as Fight Club’s rule, but you’ll soon see we have more range.

Rule #2-   No more than three books per series.

We dysfunctional literates don’t read any series that goes over three books, or if we begin reading such a series, we stop after three books.  How many stories truly deserve more than three books?  Not many do.  If The Lord of the Rings could be told in three books, then so should just about any other story.  Even The Bible is only two books, and if God only needs two books, then…


No, The Bible consists of two books: The Old Testament and The New Testament.

Okay, the “chapters” in the book, like Genesis and Psalms, are called Books in The Bible, but that’s only because God is involved.  God could call The Ten Commandments a book, and it’s a book, but only because God said so.  God could say, “Let there be light!” and call it a book, and it would be a book because God said so.  We at Dysfunctional Literacy are not arguing with God about the definition of a book because a book is whatever God calls a book.  We’re not arguing with God.

We’re arguing (very politely, of course) with those of you, human beings, not God, who know full well what we’re talking about, that you can’t publish Genesis by itself, sell it as a book, and expect people to buy it.  You also know that all of these Dysfunctional Literacy rules have exceptions, and if anybody gets an exception from these rules, it’s going to be God.  But you’re not God, so for practical purposes (not God purposes) The Bible is two books, and you know fully what we mean, so quit wasting our time with some silly semantic argument.


God visits a publisher in his dream and says, “I command you to publish all of my books from The Bible separately, give them new covers, and charge a separate price for all of them.  A separate book for Genesis.  A separate book for Job.  A separate book for each of them.”

The publisher quickly awakens in a cold sweat, not because he’s talking to God, but because of the idea God is suggesting.  “But God!” he says.  “Those individual books are too small, and they’re too many of them.  Nobody would buy them all.”

“You question the word of God?” God says, indignation in his voice.  “Make these books available on  reading devices as well, and charge $9.99 for each.”

“What?” the publisher sputters.  “People won’t stand for that.  They won’t buy it.  Even worse, they’ll one-star each book in their reviews and complain about overcharging for digital content that doesn’t cost anything to produce.”

“Who would dare to one-star the word of God?” God roars, sending spasms of  fear throughout the publisher’s body.

“Not I,” reiterates the publisher, who is barely able to speak.  “But why do this, God?” the publisher asks.  “The Bible is the best selling book of all time.  Do you really need the money?”

“No,” God grumbles, his voice lowered.  “I just want to have more book titles published than L. Ron Hubbard.”


Yes, we’re pretty sure that God doesn’t care about book sales, but if any author could irk God, it might have been L. Ron. Hubbard.

We dysfunctional literates get sidetracked easily.


UPDATE- June 20, 2018

Yeah, I know this is a lame blog post.  As tempting as it is to delete it (and it’s tempting), I’m leaving it up to show my development as a blogger/writer.  Yes, I know this post sucks.  I’m pretty sure I knew it sucked when I wrote it, but back then I saw this blog as practice because I knew nobody was reading it and I could experiment a little.  Some experiments go horribly wrong.

  1. Billie permalink

    Brilliant! Will be following your blog closely from now on 😀

    • Haha! Thank you! I think this was the first post I ever wrote. I know a post is old when I’m referring to myself in the third person. I (or we) don’t do that anymore.

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