What I had to do, he said, was to promise to send him every three months two thousand words of any old thing that came into my head … I always write really idiotic things that nobody would want to publish … last year I sent Mountjoy a solemn discussion about what to do if rabbits suddenly started eating meat. This time it was about old ladies rioting in Corn Street.*
This book was first published in 1984, a time before blogging. To me, this regular imperative to write something, anything, has strong resonance with blogging. I wonder how this fictional character would be different had blogging been available to him and his author. Would it have been enough for him to have had a blog? Would a self-imposed deadline have been enough to get his keyboard clattering? The character, stuck in a world before online publishing, assumes that his random creations would not merit the expense of publishing and so wouldn’t be worth putting before an audience, but I think these days many people subscribe to blogs which discuss exactly that kind of bizarre topics. Doesn’t his material seem rather tempting, from that snippet? Wouldn’t his blog offer novelty and escapism, qualities prized in the online communities?
Of course, no matter what the benefits, there’s one thing you just can’t blog without and Diana Wynne-Jones premonitorily covered that in her author’s note:
“All power corrupts, but we need electricity”**
*D. Wynne Jones, Archer’s Goon, HarperCollins, London, 2000, p. 30-31.
**ibid., p.