Patsy Collins has just nominated this blog for a Reality Award, so my immediate thought was ‘Reality? Yes, I get too much of that’ but then I saw that it meant something slightly different, and very nice. In fact, this is the second compliment I have had today. (You don’t get many in my line of work.) The first one was this morning, from my degree students, who said that I ‘really knew my stuff’. The ‘stuff’ in question is advanced spreadsheets in Excel, and I have to admit it’s all credit to my colleague, Felicity, that I’ve got any ‘stuff’ out there at all.
Now, for the Reality Award, I have to answer three questions:
If you could change one thing, what would it be? I would’ve been more committed about my writing earlier in my life. It isn’t that I’ve come to writing late, because I’ve always written, but, until relatively recently, I used to be the sort of writer who wrote passionately but in dead secrecy, stuffing it all away in a drawer (or, later, on a floppy disc), because it was too personal and too embarrassing to show anyone else. My writing only ‘came out’ when I joined two online writing sites and members there encouraged me to sub. The way I write now has changed a great deal.
What one thing really scares you? Dogs. As a child, dogs terrified me. I wouldn’t go out into the street in case one appeared. I don’t know what caused it, only that I was not helped by the grown ups around me pooh-poohing me and saying things like, “He’s only playing.” Even now, I’m uncomfortable in the company of dogs. Cats, on the other hand, I’m very fond of. In fact, my cat, Clarabel, who features on the Recent Reads page of this blog, is sitting with me right now.
If you could be someone else for a day, who would it be? Charles Dickens, I think. There’s something very effortless about his writing, although I know he didn’t have a very happy life.
Now I get to nominate other blogs. I would’ve nominated Patsy but she got in there first, so instead I’ll go for Sue Llewellyn’s travel blog, ‘A Word in Year Ear’, for truly amazing photos taken in most unusual locations. I see that she’s got a Reality Award already, but I’m sure she can survive getting another. I’m also rooting for ThatOscarIndia’s blog, The Making Progress Blues, in particular for its particularly direct and honest post on horse meat.