Friday, 27 March 2009


I am still in my pyjamas. "Still", as in, ever since I put 'em on twenty-two hours ago (before that I was in my karate get-up, and before that I was in my try-to-look-like-an-adult-for-work ensemble). I am still in my pyjamas because I have been working from home today, and given how much precious time I have had to spend watching Harriet lick Beatrice's ears, I really haven't had time to flex the old sartorial muscle.

I sent an email off to A Publisher a couple of weeks ago, wherein was the fancy title of a book I haven't yet written. He sounded interested, and invited me to smoosh together a short outline, and a bibliography, and a CV, and a sample chapter or two - by April. Which is - eep - only four more sleeps away, and believe you me, though I've been smooshing as well as I can, there's a lot to do. Also another lecture to write for Monday. How long is a "short outline" these days anyway? I wrote a sort of messy 5000 word version, and now I've turned it into a 1000 word version, and it's looking awful condensed.

Meanwhile, the young scholars have their first essay due on Monday, and I have been receiving emails, to wit:

Hi Dr Harlot,

i have just got a question regarding my sonnet essay, which is the margin. i read it was to be 4cm. is this on all sides, one side, ect... the reason i ask is that it seems a little excessive.

thanking you in advance

S. Student

Excellent point, S. Student. In these straitened times, there is no place for margin wastage.


S. Student said...

left & right margins of 10.5 cm are ideal.

D. Student said...

I prefer top and bottom margins of 14.9 cm.

Martin Kingsley said...

I don't use margins, preferring as I do butter in all cases.

Martin Kingsley said...

Ho ho, I see the razor sharp wit I once used to ply my trade has yet to desert me. Oh yes. I'm here all week, try the potato salad.

Alexis, Baron von Harlot said...

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. Ha.

Jayne said...

The Feral Beast offspring used a 5 cm margin on his essay but drew the line at edging it in broderie anglaise :P

R.H. said...

Well I sent my book title ('A Peeping Tom's Guide To Melbourne') off to a publisher and got no reply at all.

Very rude, these literati.

Alexis, Baron von Harlot said...

I went to a student writing anthology launch earlier this week, and launcher-extraordinaire, Paddy O'Reilly, said to the gathered throng of student writers: "Now that you're published, you have to consider the possibility that someone out there won't like your work. There'll always be a critic. You have to remember one thing about people like that ... they're idiots." Same goes for non-responsive publishers.

Broderie Anglais sounds v. fancy. I should put out an official notification that extra marks will accrue upon suitable use of pretty textiles.

Ampersand Duck said...

I wasn't going to comment upon this thread, but couldn't resist the WV:


which is the first comment in NZ blogs, I guess.

Anonymous said...

All of my undergraduate essays were marginal to one extent or another, and yet the Noble Institution still saw fit to bestow an utterly worthless title upon my narrow and trembling shoulders. At least Mother was proud.