I’ve been going more and more public with the fact that I write, if not with actual writings (apart from this blog…). Invariably, I get asked some version of the above, and I think today is the perfect day to provide you with an answer.
The simple answer: NO.
The complicated answer, supplied to you because I need something to write about tonight and it just doesn’t seem like the right evening for bringing up the latest books I’ve read about Iran or posting photos of Lyon, is as follows:
1) If I know you in non-blog life, and if you are my friend, I will only ever mention you on this blog under a pseudonym, and you’ll be spoken about in glowing terms. After all, I’m only friends with awesome people.
2) I do admit that I describe actual people I have met while traveling, or situations which have befallen me and others. It’s kind of the point of this blog. Although I definitely have a gift for attracting strange situations and people, I think most of you have realized by now that these situations are usually milked for their dramatic effect far beyond what actually happened in reality. It’s called poetic license.
3) Other than my blog, most of my writings are, as we say in Polish, for the drawer. And although that might change in the near future, I don’t think there’s anything to be currently worried about, as my audience for the other stuff is limited to one other person than me.
4) I don’t routinely go around creeping on people by reading what they write on their laptops in buses or listening in on their conversations. I’ll admit the megabus situation caught me a bit off guard because it was just so darn interesting and thus hard to resist, but a) the guy didn’t seem too concerned about who read his emails, and b) he was also creeping on me (I realize that sounds like a hardly grownup variation of “He started it!” but I swear we established some sort of communication consisting mostly of peering at each other’s computer screens every half hour to check if the other person had also lost their megabus wireless connection).
On the other hand, if people insist on bringing their most private and intimate conversations and interactions into the public spheres of train stations, buses or city streets, well, that’s fair game for an aspiring author, I say.
Do you agree?