Archive for the ‘Diary writing’ Category

Today has been one of those days I’d write about in my old diary but not one I’ll be telling you about here.

I have stacks of old diaries, all, I think, jettisoned pages before the actual book was finished but still making a good stack of memories I look through every now and then. I’d be looking through them now if they weren’t all in storage, waiting for moving day.

One of them contains my thirteenth year, written on A4 sheets of lined paper, with those little sticky white polos over the holes, and set in an ugly green binder with ‘Keep Out’ naively written in biro in those odd round letters shaped like Baba Papas we used when we wanted to show off. I got a couple of Valentines cards that year, I think (or maybe one?) – anyway, they’re stuck in there dutifully too – the real identity of the senders still a secret and the subject of probably a third of the writing for the whole year. I remember too a much later one, also A4 size, but with a classy hand painted Florentine cover and gold edging, the one I used to take with me when I sat in Cafe’ San Marco here in Trieste, waiting to teach in the evenings.

Now, if I go out to write at all, it’s with my laptop.

But the crucial difference is I am writing not just to myself and possibly another carefully selected and vetted occasional reader, but to you, who might well be my best friend, but  could also be an unknown and anonymous reader. And while it always used to be the greatest outrage of any teenage girl (the gender assumption is probably accurate here) that someone would STEAL their diary and read it, today those same girls (here I am!) are looking for all kinds of ways to drive TRAFFIC to their innermost thoughts.

Downside is, if you really do have a public, you have to decide WHAT is okay to make public.

In other words, you can’t escape the real pain that is writing.

Anyway, this was just the usual digression to say that blogging poses some serious problems for the writer, dear reader. Because actually the things that readers find the most interesting are precisely the most intimate, the most secret, that should be – must be – written, but safeguarded symbolically with a little silver lock on a chain.

Maybe that’s when it’s time to write a story…


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