If I were to get into the spirit of things, I would probably use today's post to give a cringeworthy guide to writing love scenes, or list the top ten best Valentine's gifts for writers, or detail how a caring and tolerant partner is an essential component of the writerly life.
I'm a cynical sod, however, and don't wish to celebrate Hallmark Day in any other way than to be left alone to get on with stuff, so my only concession to today's occasion is that the title of the following 19th-century poem refers to True Love.
I discovered this anecdote/joke a few months ago, and was impressed by its triumph-of-the-underdog theme and its wry realism. It dates from 1897 and appeared in Judy magazine.
“I understand that Rudyard Kipling is paid two shillings a word for his poetry,” said the soulful poet to the hard-headed editor. “Now you don't pay me any such price for my poetry.”
“I can hardly pay you two shillings, but look here I'll give you two shillings a line for a short poem.”
Next day, the budding poet returned with this:
THE COURSE OF TRUE LOVE
The Editor counted the lines, paid the money, saying “I'm beaten for once. I thought you were only a poet, but you've got brains.”
Ah, who am I trying to kid with all this cynicism? Here at Strictly Writing, we really do have something to celebrate, because our very own Caroline Green has been shortlisted in the Romantic Novelists' Association Awards for her wonderful young adult novel, Dark Ride.
Caroline's book is up for the Young Adult Romantic Novel Award, and we're all very excited for her as the awards ceremony approaches. Congratulations, Caroline, on such a fab achievement!