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.

Saturday, 19 December 2015

brian nisbet 1959-2015: now you know chosen as one of ron butlin's books of the year


Well, the days don't get any cooler just now. Nor lighter.

Even so, a surprisingly vibrant and energising walk was had early today.

The photo above shows bare oaks along Hayway Lane against eastern skies at sunrise. Oaks are rare around Bampton itself but there are some along the lane towards the Thames.

I was so pleased to hear that the poetry collection Now You Know by the late Brian Nisbet, a former student on Oxford's Undergraduate Diploma in Creative Writing, was chosen as one of Ron Butlin's books of the year (list published in Scotland's The Herald newspaper, 30th November 2015).

You can find out more about Brian's beautiful book and read some of his poems on his website.

As readers of jtns may remember, I went to the launch of Brian's book back in April. It was a wonderful event. Ron Butlin's recognition of Brian's work is a fitting tribute to his great talent, as well as to his great humanity.

Brian's obituary was published in the Guardian on 14th August, written by Mary-Lucille Hindmarch.

Of Brian's book, Ron Butlin writes: 'One of this year’s most enjoyable poetry collections comes from Brian Nisbet (Nisbet Publications), a true poet whose poems glow with genuine wonder and joy. Now You Know is a marvellous collection I will return to again and again.'

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