The Grim Pig


By Charles Gordon

cover image of The Grim Pig

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Modern management has come to The World Beacon. This means that a new editor, Fred Morgan, has been sent to inspire everyone to get out and write newspaper stories that will matter to their readers, stories about their lives, their children, their careers – and cloth.
Cloth? Clearly, the new editor is making some unusual plans and Parker MacVeigh, our hero, senses an opportunity. Parker – divorced, 40-ish – is ready for serious career advancement. When his stories about cloth get him into Fred’s good graces, and a local professor reveals that there are Saturnians among us, wreaking havoc, Fred puts him in charge of the top-secret Saturnian task-force. How Parker befriends the professor and turns his staff of Tony Fruscilla (hard-nosed young reporter) and Juanita Eldridge (soft-nosed Ivy League graduate) onto a real story is the stuff of – well, of newspaper satire. For Uncle Bob, the legendary American evangelist and fishing trophy winner is coming to town, and the Chamber of Commerce expects millions of dollars to flow in as a result.

The newspaper cast in this novel ranges from a man with a genius for creating the dullest headlines in the world to a freelancer who writes the stamp column under “M.U. Cilage.” Then there’s Shirley Davis, Business Editor in her University of Manitoba sweater, Orville and Smokey, the old guys from type-setting, and, of course, the Russian immigrant cartoonist who keeps trying to slip in his cartoon of the Grim Pig, a confused combination of a pig and the grim reaper.
This is delightful satire in the tradition of William Weintraub’s Why Rock the Boat? and Evelyn Waugh’s Scoop, and any similarity between this novel and a newspaper in a box near you is purely coincidental.
The Grim Pig