My profile description exposes me as a man of “diverse obsessions”. My primary obsessions can be determined from the content of my three blogs.
At the top is faith in Jesus Christ. My first blog “Onesimus Files” (focused upon that faith) has now been going for 5 years. It’s something I take very seriously and I have deep concerns about the extent that church tradition and theology have moved away from the foundations of simple biblical teaching. So often theologians spend time explaining why the bible doesn’t really mean what it clearly says and “Christianity” today is far removed from the teachings of Jesus and the writers of the New Testament.
Where the "Blogs Have No Names", is the second blog I started. It has no specific theme, but it became a record of my move from Sydney to the country with a lot of emphasis on my gardening attempts.
I haven’t written much about my garden recently because, over winter, there hasn’t been much to write about. The garden is merely less productive and more lifeless than at other times of the year.
Winter has allowed me to make a start on my front garden – reclaiming more lawn to establish a new native garden bed. Unfortunately winter isn’t the best time for planting. The frost has hit things hard and some of my new plants may not survive.
The blog name was clearly influenced by the U2 song “Where the Streets Have no Name”, and I came up with it on the spur of the moment when I couldn’t think of anything clever to name it.
My most recent blog is “Out of Shadows”. A “literary blog” dealing with books I’ve been reading as well as some thoughts about writing and storytelling. When I started that blog I was going through a period of frustration. Several times in my life I have tried to change career direction, but every time I seem to travel full circle and end up back where I started – and again I’m back in an administrative job little different to every other job I’ve had.
“Out of Shadows” was initially a tool to revitalise the only career ambition I ever had – to be a writer. The first step on that journey was the revival of my interest in reading. I had to find books that I could enjoy, that would maintain my interest until I reached the end. I’ve started far too many books that were eventually abandoned or perhaps more correctly: forgotten through disinterest.
So far I haven’t done too badly with the reading part. By keeping a list of completed books I can see the progress I’m making, but there is the temptation to inflate the numbers through choosing “easy reads”.
Looking over my reading for this year I can see that the majority has been non-fiction, so I’ve drifted away from the aim of re-inspiring my desire to write fiction.
Authors are always being asked for advice from people like me who have writing ambitions, and one of the common pieces of advice they give is to read. I guess reading other writers is supposed to provide inspiration, but there are so few writers today who I would find inspiring.
Yesterday I looked over the list of the fiction I’ve read recently, trying to select my three favourite books. I struggled. There was only one clear choice, and a second that made the grade with a couple of minor reservations. For a third I had to compromise a little by choosing a book I ‘d recently reread – one that I had enjoyed years ago, but not quite so much the second time around.
I was intending to write an article about my top three choices (three fiction and three non-fiction) but have decided to wait until I finish reading Slam by Nick Hornby – I’m enjoying it so much that I can already see it will easily push the compromise book out of contention.
Reading back over this article I can see how easily I become distracted. In what was intended as a look at my diverse obsessions, I have touched on merely a few. Maybe a clearer idea of the things that interest me would be found in reading through earlier posts, both here and on my other blogs. And perhaps the books I’ve been reading will also give a clue to some of my many interests.