... but I stopped. Now I'm a dad, and may blog again...

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Block Chop 96: Lazily stealing and good exercise

When I’ve done little but spend the morning overworked and underpaid, and the afternoon napping and struggling to write anything of value, there seems not to be much worth blogging about.  I’m tempted to just grab the nearest book to hand, jump to a random page and start typing where my finger lands.  In fact, here I go:

Squash was already more popular than Fives at Uppingham by the time I arrived and the Fives Courts were really just places where bikes were parked and behind which one smoked, masturbated or sipped cider with, or without, companions.
(Fry, 1997)

I wrote that (ignore the attribution; it’s a figure of your imagination).  I can’t remember what I was going on about at the time.  I’m almost certain I’ve never been to anywhere called Uppingham and I have no idea what Fives is or are.  Perhaps a spot of light hypnotherapy could extract those hidden memories from the bunkers of my hippocampus, or more appropriately could implant the false memories in there convincing me I’m not verging on plagiarism.

OK, next book:

                Rincewind, Twoflower and Hrun stared at the coin.
(Pratchett, 1983)

And again:

Curiously enough, Otto wasn’t being altogether preposterous when he offered to take the analyst’s place.  Like many very animal people, he has considerable instinctive powers of healing – when he chooses to use them.  At such times his treatment of Peter is unerringly correct.
(Isherwood, 1939)
Once more:

Unfortunately, there wasn’t a next time.  During Millot’s reign over the Comoran coelacanths, repeated efforts to capture or film live coelacanth failed, and Zema ben Said was the only Comoran fisher to claim the £200 award.
(Weinberh, 1999)

And dragging it out further than I should:

The fjord was at least two miles wide by this point; the waves broke with a roar on the sharp rocks, and the whole inlet was confined between steep walls of rock three thousand feet high and remarkable for its brown strata separated by beds of reddish tuff.  However intelligent our horses be, I did not look forward to crossing an arm of the sea on the back of a quadruped.
(Verne, 1864)

So what am I doing here other than lazily stealing other peoples writing, and throwing it in completely out of context in some sort of ugly enforced kookiness?  To be honest I have no idea.  I’m supposed to be writing the thoughts from my head and practicing channelling them creatively.  That’s not going to happen if I’m tapping out another’s hard-written prose.

Here’s another quote:

Simeon drew himself up to his full height; a thoroughly unimpressive four foot ten inches.  He was fooling no one except himself, and even he wasn’t entirely convinced.  Had he not had his fourth double Balvenie SherryWood he would have been certain of his own insignificance.  Mrs Merriment was able to look clean over his head with even registering his presence.


Huntington’s is hell.  And the blanket itched.  And his feet were too hot.  The bell rang so that his consciousness of it faded in and out.  Sometimes it was there, and sometimes not; but it was always there.

One more time:

The floor wasn’t designed for this.  The old boards had settled over the years into a concave ramp, and they had weakened significantly.  Any sane office designer would have installed the heavy filing cabinets in the corners, furthest from the massive dip in the centre of the room.  Or else they would have torn the whole thing out and started from scratch.

No attributions for those quotes, because they aren’t nicked from anything.  I’ve no idea where they came from or what they are about, but I just wrote them.  It feels like a pretty good writing exercise: make up a nonsense extract from an imaginary story, and then potentially some could throw up ideas for expansion.  Who is this Simeon short-arse?  (And it’s not me with the handy addition of a stupid name.)  Who is the poor sod suffering from Huntington’s, and what’s with the saggy old floor.  Probably nothing, but you never know.  One of these little babies good one day grow into a novel (or a trilogy; everything has to be trilogies nowadays).

And rest.

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