Although I’m a diary writer, I’m not a blogger. The thing about diaries is that no one else gets to read them. And while I love to write for other people (read my writing! Here on this site!) those pieces are generally highly worked text on specific films or issues that take weeks to finish. I don’t use Facebook. I don’t tweet. I like my interactions private, and preferably face to face. So why have a blog at all? Is it just because it’s a thing that people do? Because I’m trying hard to give up doing anything for that reason.
Yet here I am, writing a blog. I suppose the two things that I need to know is who I’m writing for, and (as Christopher Isherwood so beautifully wrote) why the hell am I telling them this anyway? So- who are they- who are you? Perhaps there is no you, and no one looks at this website- or having looked, never glances at the subsection ‘blog’- and the only you is me, with my sweet sad dreams of literature, film and art world domination. Or perhaps there are hundreds of yous out there, hell- thousands (you gotta dream, right?) all interested in exactly what I have to say.
So let’s say there is a you, just someone, anyone. Maybe I sent you a copy of my books, maybe someone mentioned it to you, maybe some abstract chain of google searching brought you here. But someone, with eyes and a brain, is reading. What do I want to say to you, and why am I saying it?
Welcome to my website…?
Though of course, you are very welcome. Come in. Stay a while. The home page tells you why the site is around though, so what do I want to say right here?
Perhaps I should bring things back to Isherwood, who I read obsessively for his beautiful prose, delightful company and all his ideas. What seems to be hooking me on to Isherwood at the moment is the movement in his work from fiction to autobiography, autobiography as more than just the story of one’s life, but the vehicle for one’s ideas. I started wanting to make fiction, in films or books. When I studied at CalArts I found I had a kind of revulsion for the many personal, autobiographic documentaries being made. But when I examined that revulsion, I had to ask the question as to why I though it was ok to dress up my own experiences as fiction but not to just examine the reality of them. Clearly I had a sense of shame- of ‘I’m not interesting enough’- mixed with a particularly British sense that it’s just not proper to talk about oneself. But I’m not really that British anyway, and I’m bored of shame.
So, while I’ve every intention to tell stories, any way the hell I can, and keep writing on film in as serious and as in depth way as I can, I’m also ready to start working on my own experience without any costume. Three Books is a start- clearly. But I think there will be more. And part of that more begins here.