Thank you William Boyd

It is said that keeping a diary is a place where you can be truly honest and open about and to yourself. No holds barred. No censorship. No need to lie or pretend. There would be no point, you would only be lying to yourself, which kind of contradicts the point of the diary. A blog is a type of diary isn’t it? Or is it? It’s out there forever on the world wide web. Public record. Never to be deleted.

I have struggled with this, worrying that I cannot always afford to be completely honest and open for fear of offending people; opening up my true feeling and opinions towards controversial topics can lead to a loss in followers, a drop in stats, negative comments and occasionally the need to have to go back on what I have said. What’s the point in that?

I am well aware that not everyone would agree or care to read my opinions on politics, my money and financial rants, complaints or observations on other peoples parenting skills (or lack of); so generally I have endeavoured to keep my past posts optimistic and light-hearted apart from the occasional rant (sometimes things need to be said).

I find the ease to write comes more naturally to me when I am troubled by something, irritated by someone, angry with a situation, confused, hurt and upset. Is everyone like this? Probably not.

I get frustrated when I haven’t got or found the inspiration. I have started and subsequently not completed between 10 and 15 posts. I start with real conviction, but once I get to a point I hit the wall and lose interest; worry too much that I’ve rambled, that it will bore the reader. Mostly I leave it telling myself that I’ll come back to it the next day; I don’t and there goes another unfinished post in the draft folder.

But writing a diary, keeping a journal, posting a blog is allowed to sporadic. I don’t have to write every day. I wish I could afford the time and concentration. I read many other blogs which are, or seem to be, updated daily and as a reader I truly enjoy them as well as greatly admire the blogger. How, oh god, How do they find the time to commit every day. They seem to roll out post after post, which are honestly bloody brilliant.

Cover of "Any Human Heart"

I recently re-read William Boyd’sAny Human Heart“. I liked it 3 years ago; I love it now. It was adapted slightly (by WB) for a television drama series which is also just as good. When it was released on DVD, I nagged the Husband to get it for me (he did). I will confess that one of the reasons I loved the television programme was that it starred Matthew Macfadyen, even though I have to say that to me he will always be Tom Quinn from Spooks.  Sorry – gone slightly off topic there.

My Father-in-law (FIL) also watched the television programme (please note he is a HUGE bookworm who, I’m sure, has read nearly almost every book, ever). FIL said that he thought the adaptation from book to television was “actually very good”. For my FIL to say that, then you can be sure that it was. Period. End of discussion.

Anyway, back to my point (see, am I rambling?)….the book is the ongoing journal of a fictional man called Logan Mounstuart. It begins from his teenage years and continues throughout his life. The journals are not written daily, but in fits and starts, on again off again, sometimes with vast periods of time missing. A properly good read.

Upon re-reading I suddenly wanted to start writing again – stupid isn’t it. After nearly 2 months of nothing a made up story of a man and his journal writing has helped me pick up my own pen (yes I mostly manually write everything out beforehand – old school I guess!) and start posting again.

So I will endeavour to continue being light-hearted as much as possible – I will also address the drafts which sit waving at me, trying to get my attention and their fifteen minutes of fame.

Thank you William Boyd

xx

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5 thoughts on “Thank you William Boyd

  1. Popping over from #PoCoLo and I’m glad I did! Love this post, and I will be on the look out for more 🙂 I don’t post every day (although I do have little flurries of activity!). I spend quite a while writing, and reworking most of my posts, I would rather be happy with them than post just to have posted ‘that day’ 🙂

  2. Any Human Heart – one of those books that you can re-read and each reading is a pleasure and a discovery of things you hadn’t noticed the last time you read it (as for getting off track another example is Peter Høeg’s Miss Smilla’s Feeling for Snow, I must have read it at least a dozen times, and then books from childhood), anyway, AHA is the most unexpected combination of reworking of history and a love story, which… no I wont give anything away in the hope somebody here is tempted to read it.
    The television version is ‘very good’ because it is a novel that many thought was almost impossible to adapt, and given WB was involved this made sure it worked (though much was left out.)

    The connection with blogging is surprisingly relevant – the book is, as you say, the man’s journal – it reveals much to the people who knew him that they did not know.
    People who blog every day I find interesting, how do they find the time and the words? And it is public – responding to such blogs has its risks too!

    ‘FIL’
    PS
    I haven’t read every book ever, the trick is to give the impression you have! Do you know about David Lodge’s ‘after dinner game’ – well read people have to convince others that they have read an important book when they haven’t (in one of his novels a character who is a professor of literature admits to having never read Hamlet.)

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