Welcome to justthoughtsnstuff

I started posting to jtns on 20 February 2010 with just one word, 'Mosaic'. This seemed an appropriate introduction to a blog that would juxtapose fragments of memoir and life-writing. Since 1996, I'd been coming to terms with the consequences of emotional and economic abuse that had begun in childhood, and which, amongst other things, had sought to stifle self-expression. While I'd explored some aspects of my life through fiction and, to a lesser extent, journalism, it was only in 2010 that I felt confident enough to write openly about myself. I believed this was an important part of the healing process. Yet within weeks, the final scenes of my family's fifty-year nightmare started to play themselves out and the purpose of the blog became one of survival through writing. Although some posts are about my family's suffering - most explicitly, Life-Writing Talk, with Reference to Trust: A family story - the majority are about happier subjects (including, Bampton in rural west Oxfordshire, where I live, Oxford, where I work, the seasons and the countryside, walking and cycling) and I hope that these, together with their accompanying photos, are enjoyable and positive. Note: In February 2020, on jtns' tenth birthday, I stopped posting to this blog. It is now a contained work of life-writing about ten years of my life. Frank, 21 February 2020.

New blog: morethoughtsnstuff.com.

Friday 12 March 2010


Weekend. What weekend? Off to Taylor tomorrow for most of the day, then going through an extended essay on Sunday. Well, a good weekend, actually. True, I can't wait till next week and a short break but I love working at the Taylor, in the main reading room at the enquiry desk, and working on essays and stories is like breathing, really.

I wonder what the light will be like in the Taylor tomorrow. Those huge windows are amazing--views of Oxford and big skies, moods passing across the library, spilling, bursting, filtering.

I'll go on a longish walk before I set off. It's been fun exploring the countryside around the village again, since the bike broke down irretrievably. Particularly in the twilight at 6, 6.30 am (though now astonishingly it'll almost be light): the shapes of hedgerows, flooded hollows, the far escarpment, inquisitive deer peering, screech owls soaring--all emerging, muted, calm.

Next week, next week--I shall, with luck, buy a new bike, and be back cycling. It'll be fun exploring my favourite routes and seeing how things have changed over the last month.

Off to the Horse Shoe later for a pint or two of Peroni. FAB.

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