I recently uncovered an exercise book from when I was nine. It contained a “novel” I started writing, but unfortunately never got past chapter one. It’s in fairly tatty condition so I thought I’d add it to the Internet for prosperity. I’ve copied it verbatim so it preserves all the original (bad) punctuation and structure.
I think you’ll agree it’s pretty powerful stuff, with an overwhelming sense of optimism throughout…plus an ever so slight sense of self-satisfaction…
Any similarities to the hobbit (which I suspect I may have been reading at the time) are purely coincidental and any accusations of plagiarism are flatly denied…
Any way, here it is
I am Paul. I am a little boy who is nine. I have got lots of friends. One day I woke up and went downstairs, had my breakfast and went to school. At playtime I sneaked out of the schoolyard and went up the fields with my friends. (These are my friends) Jonathan, second in command, Adam first in command, Kristofor, third in command, Daniel, fourth in command, Ben, fifth in command.
On the way we fell down a trapdoor and back in time. We landed on a desert, we could see nothing but sand and a big crater with gas coming out. I threw a piece of fire in. All the gas went red and suddenly a fire leapt out. the fire spread and we all ran. We managed to get away by running into a cave and climbing out of reach. We looked all around, we saw nothing, it was all a dead end. Down below was the fire. We saw a ladder going up the side of the rock face. We tried to climb it but it was very old and it nearly broke, but we mended it and climbed it.
We came out at a little trapdoor, there was a hill on the one side where we found some big people. The people were trolls. The trolls had lots of food and drink. We went up the mountain and on the way we found some camels and took them with us. When we reached the top, we hid behind a rock and tied the camels there. We were very hungry so we wanted the food but how could we get it?
Fight said Adam! We have got nothing to fight with. We could fight with our hands, but they will not be strong enough, but we could sneak up on them and pinch some at a time. Yes, that is what we will do. Jonathan first please. Jonathan sneaked up while we watched and I thought. Then I had a idea. The idea was that we dig a hole to the trolls and then come up and pinch food and drink.
So then we all started digging, all except for Jonathan who was, by now, hiding behind one of the nearer rocks and could see the trolls were blue and that one was Tom and the other was William. Now Jonathan got scared and came back and found us down a hole that we were digging. We said “come on and help” so Jonathann got down and we said have you got anything and Jonathan said no I was too frightened. Well its a good job I thought of this hole because now we’ve only got 2 meters. So Jonathan you come and help us dig the hole.
So Jonathan came and helped. When it was done we said now all we have to do is to dig through that lot of sand then we can start taking food. So we dug through through the sand and started. When we had enough to eat for a few days we stopped getting food and tied it to the camels with vines.
Then we had a battle with the trolls. The trolls used clubs and we used wood and our swords. We got one piece of wood, lit it with the fire and stuck it right in the middle of Williams eye, it burned his eye and he was killed and turned into stone. As everyone knows, trolls turn into stone at Midnight. It was nearly midnight and Tom was still fighting. Now it is ten to midnight. At last, it was midnight. Tom turned into stone. But Ben touched Tom at the last minute and he was turned into stone as well.
We thought how to change him back, but we didn’t know how to. So I thought of an idea. The idea was to break Tom’s heart as thats the only thing in a trolls body that still lives when he goes to stone. So if you crush it, it will kill the troll and if there is anyone touching the troll they will come back alive. So that is what we did and when it was done we had to move on. So that is what we did.
The next day we found a city. It looked like a rich one so we entered. When we came in we had to stop because as soon as you go in, a hole opens and in it is a swamp. On the other side there was a great palace, it was so big that you can’t see the top of it. We managed to get across the swamp. When we all got across we headed for the palace. On the way, guns started firing at us from the palace so we broke in. When we all got in, we saw some kind of guards. They had metal fists and heads, green skins and eyes, ray guns and Sun Beams. We got caught and had to go to the king, where there were all kinds of people. There were Goblins, long necked things, three armed and four eyed people and lots of ARMYS.
They took us to the dungeons and locked us up separately. As we were boys, we slipped out and went up the ramp. There were guards but we managed to get passed them. I fell down a trapdoor but it was little and I climbed out. We killed the guards and got their suits on. Then we looked like guards and no one would notice us. We started walking and we soon came to other armys just like us. We got past them.
Round the next corner we found some ray guns, we took them and kept on going. We fell down a door and landed on the floor. We hurt ourselves but not much. There was a door that we went through, it was all treasure. We got as much as we could and went up a ladder. We came out at a room with one door. We went through the door and were outside the city.
We left the city and got to the sea. There was a ship so we got on it. We were sailing on the sea when a storm came on. Our ship was wrecked. We bash against stones. Our ship was sinking so we got on the long boat. But the storm was still on and we crashed into rocks. We looked around, we were on Ghost Island. We had a map of the island.
We chopped down some wood from the trees and made a hut. the hut was big enough to fit us all. The next day we decided to look for the treasure. Adam and Daniel said we would get killed but I said we’ve got to do it. Well we’re not going with you. Well I’ll go on my own then. No you can’t, you’ll get killed. Well I’m going I said. We’ll come with you then, they said.
Chapter 2 – Search for the Treasure
…and that’s as far as I got. hope you enjoyed it…
Ten lessons learned:
- Going back in time, may well result in mythical beasts existing
- Trapdoors are everywhere – sometimes bad, sometimes good, always worth investigating
- Thinking for a bit is usually enough to get out of any problem
- If you encounter an unbeatable force, go to great lengths to steal from them, then engage in combat for no reason
- Things happen fast, don’t dwell on success or failure, just carry on regardless
- Prison cells aren’t meant for children
- Sun beams beat ray guns, ray guns beat swords, swords beat pieces of wood, pieces of wood beat bare hands
- Throwing pieces of fire is generally a bad idea
- When bad stuff gets in the way (like swamps) just overcome it
- Breaking (troll’s) hearts, frees friends from being stuck (as stone)