Now that I have your attention, I must point out that this is not going to be a salacious account of my sex life. You'll find no reports of frenzied gyrations, no tales of nights of passion, no sweaty writhings here.
I'm sorry if I disappoint you, but what I'm referring to is how creative I can be between the sheets.
No. No. Really! What can you be thinking? This is a clean site.
I'm talking about writing. About that creative germ. That idea that starts somewhere in the hind brain and, over a period of days, weeks, even years, worms its slow way forward into your consciousness. Here it explodes like an overripe seed pod scattering its contents into the forefront of your brain and, for me, this happens most often when I'm in bed. At night. In the dark. Just as I'm falling to sleep.
Unfortunately, it is a fragile thing. If it is still small it can be saved, relatively quickly and easily. But if it springs into my mind fully grown, fully formed, glorious in all its complexity, complete with street maps, dialogue and sub plots — then it is doomed. For there is no way on earth that my mind can retain the frail fullness of it before it dies and is gone. Sometimes forever.
Writing friends tell me they keep a notebook by the side of the bed for just such an eventuality. I find that the very act of fumbling for writing materials and switching the light on can kill the very thing I am trying to capture. By the time I am alert enough to take notes I've forgotten the smaller intricacies of the idea and, more often than not, the idea itself. It was about the gun wasn't it? How my sleuth found it? Or maybe how the killer got rid of it? I'm sure it involved the weapon being hidden in a blancmange in the fridge. Didn't it?
Yes, I write that kind of book.
In desperation, after losing my latest creative jewel, I bought a second hand dictaphone, a digital voice recorder. Now, instead of fumbling for pad and pen, I fumble with buttons in the dark, hoping my touch is true and I'm set to record and not delete. Then I mumble my deathless prose, my brilliant idea, my snappy, clever dialogue, my perfect ending — right into the bleeding pillow.
Engineering bofffin required. Apply within
What I need, I've decided, is a machine. It will have electrodes that I can attach to my forehead after I've got undressed, put my nightie on, pattered to the bathroom, gone through my nightly cleansing ritual to the strains of Keep Young and Beautiful, and finally retired to bed. There, warm and snug, with my mind roaming free in search of my muse, the machine will effortlessly record all my creative excess, my perfectly formed ramblings and store them. Then I can drift into sleep, happy in the knowledge that my nightly creation will be there for my excited retrieval in the morning.
So, all I want, all I'm asking for is an engineering genius with 22nd century technology to make it happen. And if he also happens to be young and handsome, I'm sure we could try it out together in bed.
Tsk, tsk. Shame on you.