Tuesday, 2 August 2011

A Novel Idea

As some of you may know or have figured from reading this, I seem to spend half my life behind a computer. I read a lot, I write a lot. Most importantly of all, I like to feel that I learn a lot. I'd even go as far as to say that those little lessons (lessons like 'Don't get blind drunk on a first date') have been invaluable to me over the years.

In addition to blogging with the impotent fury of a castrated mongoose, I also have a lost love: that of creative writing. So I'm very pleased that a new friend of mine has reawakened this love through National Write-a-Novel month.

The premise is simple. 50,000 words, 31 days. Do the maths, figure out how much time you already waste at work or with your partner, or asleep. Then reject all of those things for a crazy month-long attempt at writing a bestseller.

You should appreciate that with such time constraints, quality is bound to be low. With the excuses now out of the way, I hope you'll appreciate reading this snippet from the beginning of the book. The Message is a murderous social-network that's inside your head every minute of every day. When it's not hawking you crap, it's tracing your every thought and movement. Just be glad that it hasn't become sentient and killed you. Yet.

The snippet begins after the image of London at night below. (Photocredit to photographer Jason Hawkes).

Incidentally, I haven't got a title yet. Ideas would be appreciated.

The Message – Social Media for You in the Twenty-Third Century!

Save time on manual updates! The Message is the only twentyfourseven social media solution that updates itself constantly from the things you see, think and feel.

No need for unreliable, tedious net-terminals. Through the wonder of the world's most advanced bio-mechanical engineering, you'll see the important things you need to see in front of your very eyes when you need them the most.

Stock prices, news items, sports updates. See everything as it happens in real-time. View timetables, book tickets to films or the hippest restaurants. Control everything that happens to you from the space behind your eyes.

If you've been a victim of crime, The Message knows about it. Trust us to track down that bag-snatcher before he's left the scene and be there for your safety before that mugger has even raised his knife. We patrol every street corner so you never, ever have to fear.

Medical emergency? The Message knows that you're sick before you do, monitoring the tiniest changes to body chemistry on a molecular level and making sure that you are taken straight to a synthward for the very best care that we can offer.

Questionable sexual desires? Hell, we all have 'em! The Message doesn't judge you. Instead, it can direct you to a thousand others who share your desire to get funky with farmyard animals. Now get out there and socialise, you pervert!

With The Message on your side, you'll never be lied to again. Say sayonara to toadying lackeys, rip-off salesmen and errant spouses! The Message takes you straight to your local community so you never, ever need to be alone. Experience everything and put it out there so that you can share it with your net-family.

Whatever you want, whatever you're interested in, The Message is for you. What you feel is what you see – and what you see is what you feel.

The Message. By your side every minute of every day.


  1. Interesting. Incidently, a friend teaches creative writing at the UEA and Open University, I can put you in touch if you like / think it may help...

  2. Hello Rob,

    I know a few people already involved in the Creative Writing classes at the UEA - not least because that's where I studied :) What's your friend's name?