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Great novelists: Dougal McDougal

by  Audiman

Posted: Tuesday, June 8, 2004
Word Count: 214

Dougal McDougal was one of the great Wessex novelists of the late 1800s, despite his mother's claims that he was born in Yorkshire in 1957. McDougal’s career was blighted by accusations that he plagiarised Thomas Hardy, and the public were not slow to voice their disapproval when, in 1954, he published Dave the Obscure, although Hardy himself described it as ‘gripping stuff’. However, McDougal was forced into a court of law, where a judge ordered him to be poked by a syndicate of disillusioned midgets.

An intense man, McDougal was troubled by a dwindling religious faith, a condition relieved only by laxatives and poorly written self-help manuals. For 40 years, he studied Anselm, Aquinas, Charles Darwin and Tommy Steele, eventually concluding on his deathbed that the force controlling the universe was Don Revie, manager of the wonderfully violent Leeds side of the mid-70s.

McDougal’s downfall was in believing his characters were real. When Hermione Thuggery, in his masterwork, A Mighty Fine Bladder, loses her hard-won virginity to the Dorchester Rugby Club second team, Dougal McDougal is plagued by guilt. An awkward attempt to save Hermione by physically forcing himself into the story post-publication, fails on a legal technicality, and he dies of confusion while trying to impregnate an unconvincing plasticine model of his sweetheart.