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Last Friday I posted a parody of Tom Clancy as a Publisher Help writer and asked you, my readers, to respond in the comments with suggestions for other famous writers who might be good targets for such parodies. To further encourage you, here is the Publisher 2007 catalog merge feature Help article as Raymond Chandler might have written it.
It was hot in Seattle. Not Los Angeles’ Santa Ana winds hot, the blast-furnace heat that drives men mad and women into those mad men’s arms. No, a calm persistent claustrophobic heat that drove men and women alike to stay at work where there was air conditioning, and the Internet, so that they could complain on Facebook about the heat while observing it from the coolness of the office. I got out of my rented Dodge Charger, the rental agent had tried to rent me a Prius, and started to sweat as I made my way up the stone steps to the polished hardwood door, the door slightly ajar to let in the breeze. As I started to lift the brass door knocker the door swung open and there she was, wolf grey eyes on a moon pale face framed by Goth black hair. Eileen, she was my client now, once though she’d been much more than that, but that like the Santa Ana wind was a memory of Los Angeles.Eileen had called me weeping the night before, saying something about needing me to come up and troubleshoot some catalog merge issue, or something. I couldn’t really get the story out of her between her sobbing and the bad cell connection, so I settled for calming her down and took the red-eye up to Seattle.“I wasn’t sure you’d come.”“Babe, a promise is a promise, I expect you to remember that.” I tried to keep the hurt out of my voice if not my eyes. “Show me your problem so I can fix this up and get back to a bar with air conditioning.”“Here, I’m trying to get this catalog for Michael’s shoe exporting company to the printer before he gets back from Vancouver. If I don’t he’s going to be so upset….”I ignored the sickening freefalling elevator trip that my stomach took as Eileen talked of Michael upsetting her and concentrated on the Publisher 2007 publication she was showing me. She had gotten as far as launching the Catalog Merge Wizard from the Tools, Catalog merge menu.“I can connect to this one database, but Michael says that there are two databases for this catalog and I don’t know what to do!” Her chin quivered and my knees weakened.“No problem doll, here in the Catalog Merger Product List dialog, just choose Select an existing list in the Add to product list area. Now pay attention, this brings up the Select data source window, so where does your husband keep his data?”“Who wants to know?” Michael's baritone voice was accompanied by a pair of .38 Police Specials for emphasis.
I love catalog merge. Here's a link to the Publisher 2010 help article on catalog merge.
Log in to the comments and post your thoughts, suggestions, and your own parodies in the comments.
-- Bob deLaubenfels
I love the Raymond Carver one!! Very clever! I will think up an author...maybe Hemingway? Or Gabriel García Márquez? David Sedaris?
Hey Karin - I'll work on Hemingway and Marquez. Any suggestions on what feature to cover? Maybe get all magical realism with the new typography in Publisher 2010?
Yes, magical realism combined with desktop publishing would be right up my alley. Looking forward to seeing it!