Donald Q. Haute, Gentleman Inquisitator, and the Peril of the Pythogator – David A. Hewitt

Inquisitator’s Log: July 11, 20—; 11:53 pm The Donald Q. Haute residence, Springstump Township The electromail came in the night, heralded by a ping from my desktop computing-box. My Inquisitator’s training snapped me instantly from deepest REM to full wakefulness, and I leapt, puma-fashion, from the bed. To: DQHInquisit8@squiggle.web From: Ballyhoo495371475@orgcom.net Subject: Porthos lost! Please help! A foreboding fell upon me. This Porthos: a priceless diamondjade idol of ancient Mesopocambria? A white-bearded guru-monk who’d discovered …

A question for David A. Hewitt

Q: What do you think makes a good story?

A: This is a profound question, by which I mean I find it virtually impossible to answer. If I could answer it conclusively, the number of rejection letters I receive would be much, much smaller. Sometimes it’s the inventiveness or the beauty of the language that makes a story. Often it’s that quality described by Jillsy Sloper in John Irving’s The World According to Garp: “Most books you know nothin’s gonna happen … Other books … you know just what’s gonna happen, so you don’t have to read them, either. But … this book’s so sick you know somethin’s gonna happen, but you can’t imagine what.” Most often, that can’t-look-away quality derives from the characters. They may be hard-boiled (Sam Spade, Easy Rawlins, Arya Stark); or perhaps they’re soft-boiled (Huck Finn, Indiana Jones, Gabriel Conroy of Joyce’s “The Dead”), or raw (Falstaff, George Eliot’s Maggie Tulliver, The Incredible Hulk). In some cases they’re even poached (Sanger Rainsford in “The Most Dangerous Game”). But some combination of compelling character and compelling need to see what comes next strikes me as being the closest thing to a magical formula for catching lightning in a bottle.


David A. Hewitt’s story “Donald Q. Haute, Gentleman Inquisitator, and the Peril of the Pythogator
in Metaphorosis Friday, 24 April 2020.
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About David A. Hewitt

David Hewitt was born in Germany, grew up near Chicago, and lived for eight years in Japan, where he studied classical Japanese martial arts and grew up some more. A graduate of the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA program in Popular Fiction, he currently teaches English at the Community College of Baltimore County, but has at various times worked as a Japanese translator (specializing in anime), an instructor of martial arts, a cabinetmaker’s assistant, a pizza/subs/beer delivery guy, and a pet shop boy. His hobbies include skiing, writing, meditation, writing, running, travel, and writing. His hobbies do not include jumping out of airplanes, rodeo riding, alligator wrangling, or deep-sea bathysphere exploration.


David A. Hewitt’s story “Donald Q. Haute, Gentleman Inquisitator, and the Peril of the Pythogator
in Metaphorosis Friday, 24 April 2020.
Subscribe now for e-mail updates!