I’m in that wonderful proofreading mode again – the galleys for Brilliant Workplace Skills have just arrived so I can stop trying to force myself to switch from thinking about writing to writing and instead get on with doing something useful by trying to weed out any remaining typos. So this is an attempt to keep you visiting while I get on with that. And it was triggered by thinking about doing some more interviews and inviting some more guests.
There are lots of blogs which conduct excellent interviews with writers and others and it’s always interesting to hear how they approach their work and the attitudes they have to the profession. I’ve even held some here and will no doubt do more in the future. But I want to propose something a little different because I think we perhaps reveal more about ourselves, or maybe create a more telling impression of who we are (or who we want to appear to be) when questions aren’t direct or leading. That’s why I’m inviting you to respond to a questionnaire.
As you’ll see, the questions are … er … unusual, but that’s intentional. Routine is deadly, so I like to use provocation, invite the unexpected, connect things which don’t belong together. Don’t worry, in order that you won’t feel inhibited, the first respondent will be me. As I wrote the questions, I hadn’t thought of that. So my approach to them will be the same as yours. The only difference is that, by posting this I’m actually committing myself to completing the questionnaire while you can slink away and find more interesting blogs to read.
But if you do join in, I’d prefer answers to be relatively short – maybe not as repressively so as tweets, but short enough to stay interesting. Also, if lots of people take up the offer, it would make the comments section rather long, so I suggest you send your answers to me via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I’ll post them in whatever combinations seem to make sense. If the response is a deathly silence, I’ll know that no-one ever reads this or that those who do have lots to hide.
But it’s not serious – the main object is to banish predictability and have some fun, so …
- If such a choice were possible and meaningful, would you prefer
to live in a real or a virtual world? Why?
- You have permission to paint a celebrity in a colour of your
choosing. That doesn’t mean you make a portrait, you actually get to cover
them in paint. Tell us which celebrity, what colour, and why?
- What do you think of the word ‘nice’? In what contexts would
you use it?
- You have the chance to spend an evening with a film star of your
choice. Whom would you choose and what do you hope the evening would
bring? (Be honest.)
- Complete the following sentence – ‘If I won the lottery and
discovered that the prize had to be shared with 3 million other winners, I
- If you had to change nationality, which would you choose and
- Nominate 3 types of people for a long custodial sentence in a
prison that uses painful experimental therapies to ‘cure’ its inmates.
(NOTE. Obvious categories, such as bigots, tyrants, traffic wardens,
estate agents, bankers, politicians and family and friends of Rupert
Murdoch do not count.)
- Your fairy godmother grants you a wish. You can curl up in
front of the fire with your favourite object. What is it? (NOTE. You can
define ‘object’ in any way you like.)
- A beggar sitting on a blanket on the pavement (OK, sidewalk, if
you insist), says as you pass, ‘Fortune has favoured you but looks less
kindly on deprived and desperate beings such as myself. It would be a
kindness if you were to redistribute some of your wealth to redress the
balance between you and I’. What do you reply?
- Would you like to be immortal? Why or why not?
- What music would you play through loudspeakers at night outside
the house of someone you disliked intensely?
I look forward to:
a) some interesting answers and revelations, or
b) tumbleweed and the sound of the desert wind.