Sunday, 17 December 2006

Out of the Escritoire

I’ve been keeping something from you. Something that will shock some, disappoint others and leave the rest of you shaking your heads sadly as you imagine the extra difficulties in life poor Lonie will have to face once this long-kept secret is revealed. Yes, I’m one of those. Although some of you may not care to admit it, or even realise it, we all know at least one person like me.

“My name is Lonie Polony and I’m an…an…” I take a deep breath to steady my nerves, and then decide just to blurt it out before my courage fails me completely.


The silence, after the initial stunned gasps, is crushing. I panic and my eyes dart around frantically searching for an exit through which to make a quick getaway, but Blogger Beta is, as all us poor beguiled fools have discovered, the fortress of no escape. So I slump defeatedly to the floor and continue my sorry admission.

“I’ve harboured this ambition for some years now, since I decided ‘writer of fiction’ was the ideal career for someone as lazy as me. What occupation could be better suited to someone whose favourite things include sleeping in, all-day pyjamas and as little ‘real’ work as possible? Sadly, it’s only recently I realised the flaw in my plan, the flaw which I’m sure you spotted immediately. To be a successful writer you need dedication, not procrastination. You need clever, original ideas, not tired old tirades. You need a vocabulary devoid of adverbs not listed in the Macquarie Dictionary. You probably need motives less base than ‘make a fortune and quit my job’. And then there’s the matter of possessing at least a modicum of talent.”

“And what, pray tell,” you interrupt with a sneer of faint repulsion, “is the purpose of this confession? We thought you were a harmless, loveable dag, but now you tell us you’re one of those deluded losers who think they can achieve financial and critical success in an already overcrowded market?”


“Has anyone ever led you to believe your writing is worth reading?”

“I won the Writers’ Workshop Prize in Grade 12…”

You collapse into derisive laughter for several minutes. “Anyone (snigger) else?”

“Well…you read my blog don’t you?” I venture timidly.

More peals of increasingly cruel laughter ring out. “Ah, Lonie, Lonie. Most of us in this room are only figments of your imagination! The only real people here are those three who visit out of pity. See them squirming in their seats feeling embarrassed for you? See how they avert their eyes, hoping you won’t try and foist a copy of your dull and derivative manuscript on them?”

“Hmm,” I consider. “In that case, you won’t mind what I’ve got to say, rather you’ll probably welcome it. You see, the purpose of this confession is to tell you that, in the three months before I go back to (paid) work, and while Mr. Lonie is home on leave to help with the fruits of our loins and the housework, I’ve promised both him and myself that I’ll work on the novel languishing in my hard drive, the novel which someone has implied is great, and will earn us a fortune. Consequently, as difficult as it is for a lazy, procrastinating hack, I’m going to have to stop loitering in bloggerland, or googling erstwhile acquaintances who have turned out to be pole-dancers, people who post photos of their own pooh, or high-level international policy advisors. I really mean it. No more daily visits to my favourite blogs. Fewer posts, more far-between. I’m really committed…ah, let’s face it. I’ll see you tomorrow.”


Mu Tai Dong said...

Polony 小姐, 我不认为您的名字是POLONY 小姐。我认为您管闲事用巴比伦肉!
Miss Polony, I did not think your name is Miss POLONY. I thought you manage the other people's business to use the Babylon meat!

Lonie Polony said...

*Sigh*, you're making my brain go whirly like water down a plug hole. I don't even know what I'm writing anymore, let alone you.

Anonymous said...

I think blogging is literature - and most of it is fiction as well. (Winks knowingly)

foodkitty said...

OK Lonie
Let's see the colour of your eyes. Penguin Puffin Imprest are accepting unsolicited manuscripts - write the first three chapters of a book for kids aged 10-12 (grade 6, very early high school) Final word count (full word count) should be no more that 15000, more like 12000. Needs good SOH, fart humour and mini cliff hanger end of each chapter, partic the first one.
Once you've got 3 chapters done, submit with a single page synopsis of the full plot.
Address for submission on Penguin website or ask me, I've got it somewhere..

- write often; across genres and build up those muscles. Regard blogging as warming up...


Lonie Polony said...

Thanks, Foodkitty, for your sincere encouragement! I do remember reading about the Penguin thing before, but hadn't seriously considered it. You may have just changed my mind. Now all I need do is to extricate myself from this quagmire of funk, writer's block, crippling self-doubt, obstinate procrastination and dearth of ideas. (See? I have a tortured writer's role down pat already ;p)

Are you submitting anything?

cocoa_no_gogo said...

My only shock comes from now discovering that you haven't written anything professionally. I've commented before that sometimes I think you are just showing off with your writing, and I find myself reading your blog not only for the clever content but even more so for the way your posts are crafted.

Merry Christmas!

Lonie Polony said...

Merry Christmas to you too, cocoa, and thank you for your kind words. I wasn't trying to fish for compliments, but if a fish jumps in my boat, I'm not gonna throw it back!

Gary said...

Ooooh an author ?

Me too !!! where three chapters of one of my efforts is - its upsid edown because of the blog layout so you have to start at the bottom and read up, arse about face like most things I do. :)

Good luck with the writing

Lonie Polony said...

Thanks Gary - I could use a bit of luck! The creative centre of my brain is like a moonscape at the moment. Will check out your writing. =)