Let me make this very clear from the outset. I am a sticky beak. I have a big nose I’m always sticking into other people’s business. I am an inveterate busybody.
And what’s more – I love it. I’m proud of it and I’m not about to apologise for anybody.
There are some things I claim not to be interested in. I say I’m not interested in celebrity gossip. I refuse to countenance feigning any interest in reality television. And that is true, at the most surface level. I am, objectively, not interested in these things. But at the same time, I hate to think that I’m missing out on any sort of information, regardless of whether I’m interested in it or not. I still have to know.
The flip side of this is that, apart from those few things that I’m not really interested in (even though I am), I’m interested in virtually everything. You name any aspect of human endeavour and I’ll be interested. Sports – you betcha. Art or music – absolutely. Food – can’t live without it (literally and figuratively).
It goes for areas of scholarly activity as well. You name it and I’m interested. Physics, chemistry, biology. Psychology, sociology, history. Heck, even economics. If anybody anywhere in the world is studying it, then I want to know about it.
Whenever I hear people talking about stuff, I want to join in. I want to show that I’m just as knowledgeable as everybody else. And if I can’t do that right off, I’m more than happy to do some reading or research to find out (or just eavesdrop as well as I can).
I suppose that’s one of the main criteria for being a writer. We’re professional busybodies. In order to create the stories we create, we have to always have our ears open and our noses ready to sniff out a story wherever we can find one. And what better place to find stories than in the everyday business of all the people around us.
So if you see me hanging around, if you encounter me on the outside of a group, listening intently to whatever discussion is going on, if you find me poking around for any kinds of information, don’t just tell me to mind my own business. Firstly, it won’t work, because it’s not something I’m capable of doing. But, secondly, remember it’s all in a good cause.
Posted by Jonathan Gould and tagged as