I have been writing in one form or another for twenty-five years, however, I have always been very good at pushing stuff into drawers and cupboards never to see the light of day. Over the last couple of months I have shared more of my writing with the world than I think I ever have.
My writing journey began as a teenager when I’d craft bad grunge songs for my three-chord band ‘Nemesis’ (Latterly known as The Asphalt World). We never recorded or played gigs, and we largely sucked. But I loved writing songs! I was an art student, then I moved to media, after which I dropped out and got various jobs before finding my way back in education to study performing arts. Pretty soon I discovered that I liked writing and directing plays. It influenced my decision to go and do a degree in drama, choosing a university that offered a strong leaning toward scriptwriting and directing. People obviously saw something in my writing, but I still seemed to lack the self-confidence to really push myself. So instead of doing something with my first class degree I Moseyed off towards a career in retail management which became my life for the next decade and a half. I had a go at writing comedy for a bit, even managing to co-write, produce and perform in a show on the Edinburgh Fringe. Then, about eight years ago, I did a masters in scriptwriting. And, after completing it, I reverted back to hiding my work away.
These brief moments of sharing my words have often been short lived and as much as I love my work to be read, heard, or watched; I hide my writing away. If I don’t push myself, I can’t be a true failure, right? Wrong.
I turned forty this year and maybe I care less what people think. I stopped putting off becoming a writer and took the plunge. The store I was running looked as though it may close, so I bit the bullet and made steps to become a freelance copywriter. A few months in and I am ghostwriting around thirty-thousand words a week. It’s a hard slog some days as I’m not always writing about a subject that comes naturally to me. I’m also someone that doesn’t do well on his own, so days sat working from home with the dog and cats for company can send me a bit strange. But I am slowly learning to let go of my words and just throw them out there. I’ve started sending off articles that wear my name to various sites for publication. And, I have blown the dust of this site and have attempted to post something that challenges me as a writer as often as possible. There are a few people who seem to come back and read most of the things I write, which is extremely flattering.
Maybe it’s time to share more of the words I have written in the past. So, I’ve decided that I am going to try and trawl the depths of my writing and share some excerpts of whatever older work that I can find. I may end up being embarrassed, or I could find some projects that I should never have abandoned. I’ll maybe add a bit of biographical context if it is applicable, or I may just throw it up there.
For my first ‘Flashback Friday’ I am sharing a piece from a play that I wrote as part of my masters degree. This has been shared a very long time ago elsewhere on this blog, but nobody ever came here and read my site then. The play is called ‘Three Miles To The Horizon‘ and centres around the round the world yachtsman; Donald Crowhurst. I developed a minor obsession with this fascinating real life story of the man who attempted to sail solo, non-stop around the world. It is a tale of misadventure and hubris. He pushed his ill-prepared vessel hard, reporting back record speeds and looked set to take the world record. He was a hero of the British media. But, in reality he never left the Atlantic Ocean. Eventually, he would die there. His ambition had consumed him.
Here is an excerpt from my play. I hope you enjoy. Let me know what you think. And tune in next week to see what else lies in the back of my writing cupboard.
I am three miles from the horizon. There are 140 million square miles of ocean on this planet. Salt water covers 71% of the Earth’s surface.
I skim the face.
The average depth of the ocean is two and a half miles, and at its deepest is over seven miles.
I move above all depths.
The world’s oceans mask the world’s largest mountain range at 40,000 miles long, the world’s highest under water mountain, Challenger, is a mile taller than Everest. I am a mountaineer.
I am a traveller of space and time.
The volume of the pacific ocean is the same as the volume of the moon.
I, am the first man on the moon.
The horizon is mine.
I am infinite and, infinity is in me.
I am the faulty chronometer. I am stalled within the time space continuum.
I am the perpetually stationary wave, waiting to meet the shore. Waiting to be pushed on by gravity and the moon. I look to the moon for change, only to see the past.
I am some time from the horizon, but, the closer I get, the further it shifts.
On my face I show nothing but meaningless numerals. The closer I move to the speed of light, the slower I move in the speed of time.
I am wavering and erratic. My hands drive on hopelessly through the banal groups of sixty and twelve. I miss a beat. It costs a day.
Each unique stroke is repeated to infinity. I am infinity and infinity is me.
I am three miles from the horizon. The circumference of the earth is twenty four thousand nine hundred and one miles.
I am twenty four thousand nine hundred and one miles from here. I am the equator.
The rotational speed of the earth is one thousand and thirty eight miles an hour. My place in the universe shifts at one thousand and thirty eight miles an hour.
I break all speed records.
I am three miles from the edge of the world. At my current speed I will fall off into the forever in a matter of minutes.
My course has been determined by the route and course set out by the nautical prophets of the admiralty.
As I slide off the edge of the world I will see all of creation in reverse. I will see it’s workings and underside, I see the underside of the circuit board, the corroded solder joints.
Looking down I will see the pit of forever. Gravity will hold me no-more. My fall will be infinite.
I am at the horizon I have reached the end of the road, the end of the line. The. End. Of…I go no further. I have reached the immovable, ever moving, never ending, infinite spatial paradox.
I am at one.
I have fixed the chronometer, I have set the time.
I am the balance wheel that ensures the changing nature of the sea and the ships motion does not affect the standard of time.
I am a time standard. I am Apparent Solar Time. Solar Mean Time. I am Sidereal time. I am the Prime Meridian. Universal Time. I have shifted the zones.
I, the cosmic mind have explored the labyrinths of the sea.
I have counted and measured the waves and explored the depths.
I have counted the grains of sand on the shores of the time.
I am the quantifier of all human life.
If the waves could roll in reverse for two hundred and forty three days and return me to Teignmouth I would be hundreds of miles from this horizon.
I have become my own disbelief.
© Peter Wyn Mosey, 2011