I'd been wondering why, in spite of blogging less frequently, there has been such a huge spike in visitors to WKDN. Flicking through the TV guide last night I realised why. To those folks who were hoping to see this Katie (left):
apologies. This is What Kate Did Next, not What Katie Did Next - the latest installment in the saga of Jordan's life story on UK TV. Imagine how many frustrated teenagers there are out there. They came here hoping for tits and tiaras and found typewriters and toddler tantrums instead. The only similarity between me and Jordan is our first name. Here's a link to Katie's site for any poor lost souls.
WKDN regulars will be reassured to hear I'm not writing wearing a sequinned catsuit and marabou feathers. Far from it. The wind is whistling through the beams of this C14 cottage and we're back to the winter wardrobe. It's been a busy week - the MA has begun with 'The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie' and I'm working on the memoir for Orion and The People's Author. There's three weeks until filming, and I've had to start from scratch after the hard drive of this computer crashed ... thank heavens each book is written longhand to start with. And all the time my protagonist from the newly completed book won't be still - there's at least another book in her and I keep getting snatches of new material for Evie ... but unless I get a clone she'll have to wait.
I was thinking about the Anais Nin quote: 'We don't see things as they are. We see things as we are.' When you're writing about events that happened thirty years ago perhaps inevitably you end up fictionalising your own life. I've never tried non-fiction before (but looking back at a year and a half of WKDN perhaps it was all leading up to this). The book is going to be about a lot of things that are as relevant today as they were in 1977 - financial crisis, the search for the good life, finding your way through childhood. It brings together all the themes I write about in fiction - family, relationships, home, countryside, love and loss. Maybe for a lot of reasons this is the time to write this book - the downhill run to the big 4-0, seeing Dad battling so bravely against cancer, all the recent challenges in our own small family. I'm hoping the themes I touch on move from the personal to the universal - perhaps working through my own childhood I'll find a few answers for everyone.
TODAY'S PROMPT: This isn't the first time people have mistaken me for someone else. I was writing today about the first time I went to Paris (long story, and no I won't be posting the photos). It wasn't the glorious chic experience I hoped for (unlike the Juliette Binoche film 'Paris' today's music clip is taken from - can recommend that highly). I stayed with a family who served roadkill for dinner, whose collie dog could ride a velomoteur and whose son fed this talented dog with his own fork at the dinner table. Today, why not write about mistaken identity? Has anyone ever thought you were someone else? If you're also writing a memoir at the moment, here are some good prompts I came across this week on Oprah's site:
- what's something you can't deny?
- what have you left behind?
- which physical characteristic are you proud has been passed on in you?
- when did you feel compassion?
- what did you have to have?
- what did you have too much of?
- when were you in trouble?