I’ve been glancing up at the cardboard folder on the top shelf above the screen for, oh, I don’t know how long (well, I do now, but work with me on this). It’s the one marked ‘clippings’ and stems from the time when I was a project manager and gathering ideas for my future outpourings of journalistic gold.
A brief delve into the wad of yellowing newsprint tells me that my interest was piqued by:
– Religious pieces about the real Noah’s Ark, the real Mount Sinai, a Muslim husband with a Jewish wife (Oy!) and the Vatican’s list of approved angels.
– Green technology, local currencies, ethical shopping, downshifting and investing in woodland.
– The new face of feminism and a female gladiator.
– A woman whose 12hr flight took three and a half days because the airline ‘lost track of her’.
– A man who became an artist after a stroke.
– Allergy testing, depression and death.
– Corporate gamesmanship, cyber security and surveillance.
– The EU’s (and John Prescott’s) regionalisation of England.
– Recommended building societies (hey, it was a few years ago) and planning for a secure retirement (ditto).
– Ebooks and a publishing phenomenon (no, not her this time – someone else).
– The insurance firm that offered everyone a fun-sized Mars bar when it gave them redundancy news individually.
The interesting thing, from my perspective, is that I’d happily write something inspired by any one of those subjects today. Perhaps I see more springboards to fiction now, but even so, the trails are still warm. What surprises me is the earnestness with which I collected them and the recognition that I wrote very little with any direct link.
Green Living, Creative Writing, Human Interest and Politics all remain staple interests of mine. But as I’ve progressed on my writing journey, I’ve learned not to write pieces on spec unless I have free time and a burning passion. Far better to organise my ideas and put draft proposals together.
The other thing I discovered in the folder was a collection of headlines that would not seem out of place of BBC Radio 4’s News Quiz or BBC1’s Have I Got News For You. See image above.
Altogether, it’s a little like a 10 year-old time capsule from a millennial me to the 2011 version. I’d like to send a message back: YES, I’M WRITING. THANKS FOR ASKING.