Are you there Author? It’s me, Novel.

‘Hello?’

‘I’m sorry, who is this?’

[Hurt silence]

‘Is there someone there?’

‘You don’t even recognise my voice any more. We used to be inseparable. You said I was the most important thing in your life.’

‘Ah. Sorry. Hello, Novel, how are you? You’re looking…’

‘I’m looking exactly like I did last time you looked at me. Which was in August. August!’

‘Lordy, was it really? Look, I’m sorry. It’s just been… you know how it is. What with the move back to London. Then going back to work and everything. And, um, the weekend in the Cotswolds. And then we had people over last weekend.’

‘Any excuse. I won’t write myself, you know. And what’s this I hear about you flirting with short stories? You’re so fickle. No time, you say. You’ve got all the time in the world to mess around on Twitter. And blogs! Loads of blog posts, I see.’

‘Honestly, they don’t mean anything. They’re just a bit of fun. Not like you, Novel. You’ve always been the one. You’re the one I take seriously.’

[Sulky silence]

‘C’mon. What about Saturday? I’m free Saturday afternoon, after my writer’s group.’

[Snorts]. ‘Call yourself a writer? What are you going to tell them, hmm? That you wrote 80 tweets in September?’

‘Did I really?’ [Checks]. ‘Ha. Yeah. There are some quite good ones, though. ‘The Spy Who Cumin From the Cold’ for @foyles #bookspice game. That was funny.’

‘You’re so pathetic.’

‘Don’t you get whiny with me, Novel. What have you done this month? Just lazed around waiting for me to get back to you?’

[Snivels] ‘I’ve lost confidence in myself. You never pay me any attention these days. You’re taking me for granted.’

‘Well, you’re not going anywhere, are you?’

[Darkly] ‘Don’t you bet on it, sunshine. Don’t you bet on it.’

Help. Am I splitting up with my novel? To be continued…

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