Why nucleotides when mixed together in the absence of a template RNA molecule do not readily link up into a chain? We know that the bond between nucleotides side by side is stronger than the hydrogen bond between the two RNA strands, a negative and a positive one. Shouldn't then the nucleotides form chains of RNA more readily by just attaching to each other than making a dimeric RNA through a lock and key type latching?
The book that caused this question is "What Is Life?" by A. Pross (p.68), who unfortunately doesn't provide an answer.