I woke up about 1:00 am, and wrote a blog piece about shamanism, sparked off by something Nic Paton had posted on his blog. Then when val and Jethro had gone to work I went back to bed, and read more of Crome yellow until I went to sleep, and then woke up and read more. I always thought it should be spelt "Chrome yellow". I felt vaguely guilty about lying in bed at 8:00 am, though really shouldn't have, having been up since 1:00.
Crome yellow is a strange story, a group of disparate people at a country house, relationships between most of them unexplained, but I've been meaning to read it ever since I read Brave new world when I was 16 or 17. The tempest was our matric set work, and so when I saw Brave new world in our book case I recognised the quotation from Miranda and wanted to read it. I'd read a couple of Aldous Huxley's other novels, but I knew the titles of many of them, which somehow sounded attractive, making me want to read them. Crome yellow, Antic hay, Eyeless in Gaza, These barren leaves. There are not many authors whose unread titles I can quote like that, but Huxley is one. So I suppose they are books to read before I die, rather than some of the ones chosen by British librarians. Perhaps one of the secrets of being a successful author is being able to choose memorable titles that nag one to read them. Well, they've been nagging me for 40 years and more, so it's time to capitulate and read them. Now if only someone could help me find a memorable title for my NaNoWriMo novel of 2006! Far from selling it to a publisher, I can't even give it away to my friends.
I've been rather surprised that my blog post on the list of books to read before you die has proved to be the most enduringly popular for nearly 10 weeks now, with about three times as many readers as all the other posts put together.
And that got me thinking about online blogs and journals. I don't usually take a great deal of trouble over blog and journal posts. They are usually something dashed off quickly, ideas or thoughts I want to remember, or see how others respond to them. They often have typos, which, unless they make the whole thing unreadable, I often don't bother to correct. I think they are just ephemeral, and will soon be forgotten. But that's actually not true. My unpublished novels that I've taken great care over, have been read by two or three people at the most, but some of the dashed-off blog posts have been read by a hundred or more people.