The Quest – part one

When I was about 9-10 years old I wrote a novel.

It was about me, naturally, having an amazing adventure. I did it for school, my teacher at the time was big on creative writing and gave us heaps of time to do it. She also had these cool papers with cartoony borders that we were allowed to use for ‘good’ copies of our work.

So, the story is basically about me having an amazing, wish fulfillment adventure. The other characters are my soft toys and one or two of my friends from school and some of their soft toys which I was jealous of. And the Queen of England, I think because she was the most important person I could think of at the time. Plus, she was an important character in the BFG by Roald Dahl which I adored. Oh, there’s also a monkey with a guitar for a tail. Basically, I’ve always been a bit strange.

I recently uncovered this amazing piece of history and I will copy it verbatim here for you to enjoy. Of course, you won’t be getting the benefit of the drawings I did for the cover or the cartoony borders that I was so into. You’ll just have to imagine them.
You may notice that my obsession with food isn’t a recent thing.

The Quest by Jenny.


Part One.

I felt excited as I packed my clothes, my photos and toys. I took $10.51c and a supply of food just in case. I took a compass, battery powered tape recorder and a few tapes, pencil and paper. I was packing of course for the quest for the stone of peace, ahead of me.

I was ready. I kissed my Mum and Dad goodbye. Then went to the airport by taxi and got on the plane bound for Spangle-land. The hostess gave me shortbread and chocolate cookies which I ate, then I got a lunch then asked for another as well as the one so I could pack one away for later. I got it.

Later on the hostess gave me some lollies. I ate some and again put some away for later. The captain said “fasten your seatbelts we are landing!” then at long last we landed in the airport of Spangle-land.

I looked around a bit after getting off the plane and caught a bus to Slagsville. In Slagsville I bought a thing called a good luck nugget, two leaflets and a tape. Then I took a train to Swogglesvert from there. I was able to get into the jungle. Then I built a boat and loaded what I had on it. I took out the photos and arranged the photo of the stone of peace just where I could see it and made everything look nice. I started to read one of the leaflets. It said:

Explore the great Spanzgle Cave and see the living lights, a land of carrots and the great baddie behind bars“. It said lots of other things that didn’t interest me.

My tummy told me it was dinner time so I got out the aeroplane lunch and ate it.

Later I heard “Twang jabber, splut, splutter, gasp, gulp, twang, jabber, twang, gulp, blub” and a small sponge the size of a grape hit me on the head and landed on the bottom of the boat, 3 more came and then I saw a monkey with a guitar for a tail and he was he was throwing the things at me to get my attention. He started to rant and rave about how someone should help him so I reached out and found I could get the monkey and would only tip the boat a little bit. So I hauled the monkey aboard and he told me that I had to find my sister, my pet and my friend.

I asked the monkey where they were. He rattled a bit and said “I think (rattle) they’re at (rattle) the cave of (rattle) the (rattle, rattle, rattle) the dangerous dragon.” and on the word dragon he gave me a wallop and said “You have to go through the river of pollution to get there.”
“What do you mean the river of pollution?” I asked
“I mean you’re going to die.”
“How? Oh don’t worry.” I said. “Do you want something to eat?”
“Yes.” He muttered, so I gave him a biscuit he liked it a lot, then he said to me “can I come with you?”
“Well, I guess you can.”
“YES!” He stood up and started to play the guitar tail. “twang” it said “twang twang twwaannnnng!”
“Sit down!” I said, I had to repeat it several times before he heard me. “Anyway who are you?”
“I am Puzzle Shift the monguitary.” He said.
“I am Jenny S the human.” I said “do you want a blanket? Its night time and time for bed.”
“Yes please….thanks.” he twanged a bit and fell asleep.

In the morning there were lots of soft toys floating around and some were unsuccessfully trying to clamber on. One of them was playing Puzzle’s tail (twang twang twang) I reckongnised* Snoopy, Wish Bear, Wommy, Freeda, Roger Rabbit, Newspaper Doggie and Trav. Just they were alive, I grabbed them and took them aboard, we started to sink. I threw the toys on to the bank and steered the boat ashore. Then the toys and I dried everything and made (with Puzzle’s help) a new boat that was bigger and stronger and safer.

*spelling unchanged

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14 thoughts on “The Quest – part one

  1. I should like to meet Puzzle Shift the Monguitary. Well, that’s not entirely true – I should like to BE Puzzle Shift the Monguitary:)

  2. “What do you mean the river of pollution?” I asked
    “I mean you’re going to die.”
    “How? Oh don’t worry.” I said. “Do you want something to eat?”
    ———
    I love the complete lack of concern when confronted by your death. The Monguitary is of course a classical harbinger of death

  3. Sass: …..really?
    Giffy: Apart from how I immediately offer him food?
    Erik: I myself am a little concerned about my apparent blitheness about Puzzle Shift’s message.

  4. Your 9 year old spelling is far better than many a teenager these days.
    I love the list of things to explore on the leaflet especially Spanzgle Cave although the land of carrots sounds pretty good too.
    Also the monkey with a guitar for a tail is awesome. Did you draw any illustrations for the story? Kid’s art work is teh awesome.

  5. I may have changed spelling as I went….I know it did say ‘bottem’ for the bottom of the boat.
    I did a couple of pictures, just for the cover and title page I think, but I’ll see if I can scan ’em on our flash new scanner for you. I did draw the monguitary so I’m sure everyone’s keen to see that!

  6. I second Erik’s comment about your reaction to impending death; it made me laugh out loud.
    This is adorable :). Plus, yay for nine year old you – you’d a better grasp of pretty much everything than some adults I’ve seen :D.

  7. I must see the monguitary! Also your story made me hungry.
    This is making me nostalgic for story writing at intermediate. I remember them teaching us different ways to imply ‘he said’. I am guessing that is why Puzzle Shift mutters “Yes” when you offered him food.
    More instalments please!

  8. Rachel: Hee, it is pretty bizarre! I’m cringeing personally about how I have to explain every single thing that happens 🙂
    Sok: yes, totally. Trying not to use he said too ofetn. I’m sure there are other examples in there…
    Sass: 🙂

  9. Hah, yes – you have free rein to cringe over your own stuff, but from outside it’s pretty darned cute. And nearly twenty years old, heh. God. I feel old when I think of things like that. Your dialogue punctuation is adorable, but it mostly reminds me of having to correct that kind of thing from people our age :D.
    “Puzzle Shift” – So, nine-year-old Jenni was perhaps a Narnia fan? ;P.

  10. Hee, I was waiting for someone to recognise the reference. I’d just finished reading the Last Battle, and although I didn’t think much of the book all up I loved the monkey and donkey stuff at the start.

  11. I want to know more about Slagsville! And how did that good luck nugget work out? Twang jabber, splut, splutter, gasp, gulp, twang, jabber, twang, gulp, blub

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