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.

Sunday 5 February 2017

longest january, bug, software nightmare!, samantha wynne-rhydderch at kellogg, sb sweeney's brilliant facing the strange

Am I the only person who thinks that last month was the longest January on record?

Perhaps it was the bug I succumbed to early in the New Year that laid me low or the dark days that seemed to dominate.

Despite the, rhetorical, question at the head of this post, my impression is that a lot of people have been laid low during the weeks since the Christmas holidays.

My experience of last week, with the change of month, didn't altogether lift my spirits. There was the major software failure on my now previous phone to contend with. A choice of reset and lose all your diary and notes data or transfer the info manually ensued.

Ironic that the day before I had been chatting with a colleague about how overmuch we rely on these devices of ours.

On the plus side, the manual transferring of data does force you to make choices. How much rubbish I keep on my phone! Smartphone? If only the operator was as smart!

Not that the week hasn't had its highlights  I very much enjoyed Samantha Wynne-Rhydderch's talk about her wonderfully thought-provoking and entertaining poetry at the Kellogg College Centre of Creative Writing. See: http://www.rhydderch.com.

And, of course, I'm looking forward to the release of SB Sweeney's brilliant novel, Facing the Strange, which is officially out on Thursday 9th February, but the publication of which is spread over the coming two months - Oxford launch at Blackwell's on Thursday 16th March, for example. See http://www.streetbooks.co.uk.

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