I’ve decided to branch out with my writing. I’m going to write a self help book. These are big money spinners, so I think I’ll hop on the gravy train. Why not? Every other bugger is doing it, why not me?
In order to do this I needed to find an area where I could, if not do the most good, be guaranteed the biggest audience. I toyed with a diet book. There are hundreds of them, there must be room for one more. Sadly, I wrote the first four words and ran out of steam.
‘Eat less. Exercise more.’
That was it. I’m not likely to shift millions with that, am I? I need to talk some bollocks about sea kelp instead of salt (Hey! It tastes salty but it isn’t salt, so it doesn’t count!) or the perils of eating meat with pickles. Just how you can eat a cheeseburger without gherkins (dill pickles) is beyond me. And there’s the additional problem that nobody will believe me. This must be true. If not, why are there so many diet books? They can’t all be right, can they? So there must be a load of nonsense out there. I realised my heart wasn’t in it.
So I had a punt around my local library, to see what else I might tackle. Cycling? Pedal harder and faster. Fishing? Use the right bait in the right place. Race driving? Keep the car on the black bit not the green bit. A quandary then.
But no. I’ve got it. Golf. There’s the big market. If we take the Woods and McIlraes out of the equation, we have a sport (and I use the term loosely) played entirely by people who aren’t very good at it. Seriously, they can’t be. If they were, they would not need the plethora of books telling them how to play better.
I’ve never played a round of golf in my life, but I don’t see this as a handicap. Small joke there. But apparently nobody else has either. They’re all tyros. So why can’t I join in? No reason at all. Yowser! Let’s go for it.
My first draft wasn’t a big success, I must admit. ‘Hit the ball into the hole.’ A bit short for a bestseller perhaps. Nor was my second draft. ‘Why bother?’ No, not going to make my fortune with that, either.
So I did some research. All the best writers do some background stuff, so why not me? Now according to my very accommodating librarians, the most popular golf book, and there are multitudes, is one called ‘The Seven Laws Of The Golf Swing.’ Way to go.
Again, my first draft was not a success. ‘Hit the ball really hard from the tee in the general direction of the pin.’ I was at least picking up some technical terms to sound more authentic. Before my research I’d have said ‘The stick with the little flag on it.’ So some progress, but that was as good as it got.
In some intellectual disarray, I went back to ‘The Seven Laws…’ I must say this sounds a bit dictatorial. Might as well call it ‘The Ten Commandments,’ but hey ho. But here’s a bit of advice I did not expect.
‘You must imagine the ball where you want it to be.’
Eh? Then I’d miss it. It’d be 340 yards away, wouldn’t it? I’d need a damn long driver (technical term) to hit that, wouldn’t I?
Aaah, forget it. Eat less, exercise more. Pedal really hard. Use the right bait. Keep it on the black bit.
Be kind to others.