MONTY PYTHON


Novel Writing Lyrics

1st Announcer (Eric Idle): And now it's time for "Novel
Writing" which today comes from the west country from
Dorset.

2nd Announcer (Michael Palin): (sound of a crowd in the
background) Hello and welcome to Dorchester where a
very good crowd has turned out to watch local boy
Thomas Hardy write his new novel "The Return of the
Native" on this very pleasant July morning. This will
be his eleventh novel and the fifth of the very popular
Wessex novels….and here he comes! Here comes Hardy
walking out toward his desk, he looks confident, he
looks relaxed; very much the man in form as he
acknowledges this very good natured Bank Holiday crowd.
And the crowd goes quiet now as Hardy settles himself
down at the desk, body straight, shoulders relaxed, pen
held lightly but firmly in the right hand, he dips the
pen...in the ink and he’s off! Its the first word, but
it is not a word….. oh no, its a doodle way up on top
of the left hand margin. It is a piece of meaningless
scribble, and he’s signed his name underneath it... oh
dear, what a disappointing start, but he is off again
and he goes the first word of Thomas Hardy’s new novel,
at 10:35 on this very lovely morning, it’s three
letters it’s the definite article and it’s THE, Dennis

Dennis (Graham Chapman): Well, this is true to form; no
surprises there. He started five of his eleven novels
to date with the definite article. We’ve had two of
them with 'it', there's been one 'but', two 'at's, one
'on' and a 'Delores'. Oh, that, of course, was never
published.

2nd Announcer: I'm sorry to interrupt you there,
Dennis, but he’s crossed it out. Thomas Hardy on the
first day of his new novel has crossed out the only
word he has written so far and he's gazing off into
space….Ohh! Oh dear, he’s signed his name again.

Dennis: It looks like Tess of the d'Urbervilles all
over again.

2nd Announcer: But he's..No..he's down again and
writing, Dennis. He’s written THE again, he’s crossed
it out again and he has written A and there is a second
word coming up straight away, it's SAT, a sat, doesn’t
make sense, a sat, a Saturday, it is a SATURDAY and the
crowd are loving it. They're really enjoying this novel
and it’s AFTERNOON, a Saturday afternoon, is a
confident beginning and he is straight on to the next
word and it's IN, a Saturday afternoon, IN, in, in,…no,
NOVEMBER, November's spelt wrong, he has left out the
second E, but he’s not going back! It looks as though
he is going for the sentence and it is the first verb
coming up, the first verb of the novel and it's WAS,
and the crowd are going wild! A Saturday afternoon in
November was, and a long word here , appro, is it
approval, no, it’s APPROACHING, a Saturday afternoon in
November was approaching and he has done the definite
article THE again and he is writing fluently, easily
with flowing strokes of the pen as he comes up to the
middle of this first sentence and with this eleventh
novel well underway and the prospect of a good day's
writing ahead, back to the studio.

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