I've just finished writing the first chapter of my new novel - as yet untitled - and it's definitely a bit of a curate's egg, even to my paternal eye.
The good news is that I managed to insert my first joke by the sixth paragraph. That's one more joke than I managed in the whole of A Half Life Of One. Since it's meant to be a humorous novel you can guess how relieved I was to get that hurdle over with.
The bad news really emanates from the fact that (so far) the central character is sixty years old. He makes an unintentional joke about Gogol. Of course if he (or me for that matter because the hero so far is a thinly-disguised version of myself) was younger and more more in tune with contemporary mores he'd be cracking jokes about Google, not Gogol.
When I re-read what I'd written I suddenly realised how old-fashioned I'd become. My only hope is that the humour really is timeless. To make matters worse I began to experience the unmistakeable feeling that what I might be doing is creating a new fiction genre, one that is unlikely to surpass Chick Lit in the Amazon sales rankings.
Grandad lit, anyone?