June 17th, 2008

The Other Charlie Finlay

With apologies to everyone who's read this doggerel before

..but I'm reposting it at the request of sandramcdonald, who says she doesn't recall reading it. It's been about three years since the last time I posted it here and a decade since I wrote it, and it doesn't apply to me right now: I'm busy working with my editor's comments for book 1 and polishing up the first draft of book 2, which shall be declared finished by the end of the week if I have to kill myself to do it.

But enough of that. Here, for Sandra, is:

The Novelist's Lament


Alas! I've reached the middle muddle
in my new novel. I'm in trouble,
so I doodle and I dawdle,
scratch my noodle, weep a puddle,
grab a friend and try to cuddle
but STILL I have to muddle through the middle.

Fiddle!

If I could hurdle past the muddle
in the middle to the battle
where addled foes will sabres rattle,
the muscled hero with his antique atlatl
could spill his quiver then skedaddle,
scoot off to whittle a canoe and paddle
'til he founders by a shore of nettle,
where he'll lose his breeches, wear a kettle
-- Aye! That'll test the hero's mettle.
But after all that I'll still be saddled
with the muddle in the middle.
It's enough to drive me maddle!

Faddle!

Or I could herd my characters like cattle,
round up heads and let them prattle,
have the traitor tell his tattle over bottles
in a tavern, turn my skills to something subtle.
That'd pad the middle past the muddle.
The fuddy duds' and dullards' deeds'll
need a jaded rogue who'll needle,
while the greedy merchants wheedle
and pretty women preen and preedle.
Yes! That's one idea... a seedle...
But if my readers I bewilder and befuddle
with this feckless scuttlebutt, I'll bettle
that the book'll be impossible to peddle.

Feddle!

I could introduce a foolish poodle
who consumes a steaming struedel
but that seems a little crudel.
Or invent an anxious axolotl
whose gross debilitating mottle...
Argh! Someone sieze my throat and throttle!

Fiddle Faddle Feddle Foo!

I am muddled in the middle
and I don't know what to do!