Because if he doesn’t, he gets no better than this.

I just dug out of my files a few pages of a novel I attempted to write when I was 18 years old (I’m 39 now). Titled Among the Meek, it’s horrible, putrid stuff, and I can’t take my eyes off it.

To give you a bit of the flavor, I’ll share the first paragraph:

The day hung heavy and grey. There was no visible sun to indicate the hour. The hills in the distance dotted the skyline. The green of the trees in the valley were blotted by the grey. It was the sort of day that emitted a foreboding of mediocrity. All that could be seen in the sky was grey.

So what I was attempting to say, if I’m reading this correctly in the hindsight of 21 years, is that it was gray. Excuse me, “grey.” (Apparently, I lapsed into an English lad in my late teens.)

Also, “foreboding of mediocrity” might be the most unintentionally hilarious line I’ll ever write.

The pages — there are nine of them, which is apparently as far as I could go — are heavily marked with notations in my handwriting, so I do take some retroactive heart that I knew this wasn’t very good. That’s a start, right?