Monday, December 7, 2009

NaSwe PraMo

Remember April Fool's Day, when you were a kid? Oh, man. I had the time of my life pulling pranks on my family - especially on my little sister. Unfortunately, this is a habit I did not lose with age. Most people call me immature or childish for my love of practical jokes, but then again, most people suck. Of course, you, my faithful readers and bestest BFFs, don't suck. I bet you pull the occasional prank of your own.

So let's see them! Tell me what the best practical joke you've ever played was. Or, if you haven't played it yet but have a good idea for one, let me know and perhaps my little sister will feel the biting sting of your sense of humor! In fact, let's designate December as prank month. Prank as many people as you can all month, and email me your updates. (Only put your best prank ever in the comments here; I don't want pages and pages to scroll through, please.) It'll be sort of like NaNoWriMo, only instead of a daily word goal, you'll have a daily prank goal.

Let NaSwe PrankMo begin! (National Sweet Prank Month) (I know, crappy acronym. I'll try for a better one later. Ideas?)

And so you know I'm participating too, I'll post this little gem I did for my own amusement a few days ago.

Being an author, I have a few "industry" friends. And one of those friends just happens to be a very cool agent by the name of Joanna Stampfel-Volpe. (No, she's not my agent.) If you're looking for someone to represent your work, I definitely recommend her if she does your genre. Almost as much as I would recommend my agent (the amazing Adam "Snapper" Chromy, heretofor known on this blog as "Tha Agent" - with an 'a' instead of an 'e' to denote how gangsta he is, and how he busts figurative caps in the competition). Anyhow, if you're unfamiliar with publishing, or just how the agenting bit of it works, I'll explain it quickly for you:

Agents are the author's voice with publishing companies. They do pretty much everything business-oriented for their authors, freeing up his time to do his job, which is writing. If you're writing and want to get your book sold to a large publisher, these guys are the only way to do it. (Unless, of course, your dad is the CEO of Scholastic or Harper Collins or something - in which case, do you want to hang out?) Authors get ahold of these guys by sending what's called a query letter. These are brief letters describing the author and the project they have done (fiction) or are planning to do (non-fiction). The agent decides, based on this letter, whether they want to read the author's stuff.

Now, agents like their query letters done in very specific ways. Basically, what they want is to know who you are, why you're the best person to write the book, and most importantly, what the book is about. They don't like people who brag too much or who don't have enough confidence in themselves, and a thousand other things. It'd take far too long to list all agent pet peeves, so I suggest you look on my reading list for The Rejectionist. That's a good blog from an agent's assistant.

Getting on to the prank:
I set up a fake email account and wrote an entirely fake query letter to this agent friend of mine, then at the end, typed "You've been had!" which is an inside joke she would know nothing about, so I don't really know why I typed it, and then told her it was me all along. She loved it, cracked up, and told me she's saving it forever. (This is an example of one of my nicer pranks, as it made everyone involved laugh.) Here's a copy of the email I sent her:

Dear lucky agent,

I picked you, yes YOU, out of the thousands and thousands of literary agents I found on some website to represent this once in a life-time amazing idea. I'm a middle-aged guy and I've never really had any interest in books or writing before at all, and to tell you the truth I was in remedial reading classes in high school (I didn't bother going to college - it's for suckers), but once I had this idea I read a book on how to write and BAM! Now you see this amazing author that stands before you today. (Well, sort of stands. More like emails. But still.)

Anyways, you're probably wondering what this idea is. Well, let me tell you. Are you ready? Sitting down? If not, please do so. I wouldn't want you to hurt yourself when you read this earth shatteringly awesome idea. Ready for it? Here it comes.




Right? Right?! I know! Genius! But the awesome train doesn't stop there. Oh no, ma'am. It keeps going right into Grandiose Central Station. Because not only do we have the cutest cuddly kitties around posing in different sexually suggestive positions and dressed like priests, nuns, and astronauts, but the whole thing is written in ancient runes!

It blows your mind, doesn't it? I knew you would like it.

I haven't made the calendar yet, but I drew a picture of a kitty with crayons earlier. I can scan it and send it to you as an example if you want. Also, this is the first in a series. The sequel is dogs and sanskrit. That's right, the gravy train keeps chugging. And I want you as the conductor!

As far as business is concerned, I'm willing to offer you a 3% commission on the sale, as long as you promise not to steal my idea and do it yourself, since it's so awesome. Get back to me by the end of the business day today, or I'm taking it elsewhere.

Faker Von Prank
1110 Richie st
Got you, Good 11020

There you go! You have your mission. Now go, prank!


  1. hahahaha.... CLASSIC, man!!! LMAO!!! I love the letter... as if there aren't too many cat calendars out there!!!

    AS for me... the greatest prank I ever pulled... was when I was in high school and I was at an all-girls slumber party. Me and another girl decided that we'd initiate a 'Truth or Dare' game because i wanted to pull a nasty prank on the girls.

    I had receieved a free box of tampons in the mail and I didn't know what to do with it... Since it was taboo for Muslim girls to wear tampons (because of the hymen).

    so at the party, during Truth or Dare game, it was my turn so I took the dare. My friend (along in the prank) dared me to wear a tampon. I dramatically cried, "but I have my period!" and she taunted me, calling me a chicken. So I grabbed the box of tampons and went into the bathroom. I took out my red nailpolish and smeared it all over a tampon. I made fake screaming sounds "OH MY GOD THIS HURTS!!!", making the girls think that it was painful shoving a tampon through my tight hymen.

    I came out of the toilet and waved the fake bloody tampon. All the girls SCREAMED and I threw it at them.


  2. Ahahaha. This is both gross and funny. Two great elements in a prank.

  3. Holy crap, the prank wars I've been involved in...especially in college...

    Okay. I'll try to keep it clean.

    Is it snowing by you? Like a lot? If so, it is AWESOME when you bury someone's car in snow. They literally walk right by it, thinking it's a big pile from the plows. And then they have to dig their car out. This will only work if the car is a small 2-4 door--not a minivan or jeep. That would just take too long for both parties.
    Also snow related--and if she won't kill you for this, we once spent the night piling snow up against one of our friends front doors (their door opened IN to the house). So when he got up for class the next morning, Snow right in the face (and in the house...eesh).

    OR you can stick with the old sardine can in the radiator. It's gross, but it will baffle them where the fish smell is coming from (you only need to open the can a little bit).

    OR you can steal her keys and move her car, then put the keys back. She'll think it's been stolen (my boyfriend at the time, who is now my husband, pulled this one on me).

    OR--this one is fun--you can pick two simple rooms in her house and literally switch the furniture and all the fixings bit by bit, making the rooms look exactly the same, just on the other side of the hall now. This works best if the pain colors/floors are similar. She'll think she's gone crazy.

    And here is the last one (I know, you said you didn't want to scroll forever, but I owe you for the query anyway...). This is a classic and SOMEONE in my family gets it every, single April Fools. You put shaving cream on your phone receiver. Call the house and answer it before your prankee does, then say it's for them. Shaving Cream in the face!

    I <3 pranks

  4. Oh man, Jo, those are some good ones. I've done the snow door prank myself, actually. And the furniture one, but modified a little. While a friend was passed out drunk in his bed, we carried all of his bedroom furniture outside to the parking lot and set it back up. He didn't even wake up as we carried the bed! (This only works if the prank-ee lives in a loft with a big shipping door leading outside, so you don't have to turn the bed.)

  5. P.S. For some great pranks, search for prank wars on the video search function on Those guys are damned funny, and the last one, Amir (one of the guys involved) made Streeter (the other guy involved) think he was going to die. Hilarious.

  6. Folks, just be careful not to get sued by someone who doesn't have a sense of humor... !!

  7. Pranks? Hee hee hee. We had great pranks didn't we?

  8. Actually, if you get sued because your prank is that awesome, I'll give you a prize.

  9. Thanks for stealing my joke!