Go on, be strange

Sorry this is late. Another week in hospital (yes, again) which means a week of no writing, but plenty of reading at least.

I do enjoy strange books. Amongst my very first favourite books were Alice in Wonderland and Winds in the Willows, which if you think about it, are very strange books. Wonderful, but strange. (My very first favourite book was The Very Hungry Caterpillar, so much so that I buy it for any children I know. One young friend of mine tried to eat her copy, which seems perfectly appropriate).

Since then I have read of a time-travellers wife, and unfortunate children, and people who live the same life over and over and peculiar children and a woman who reads herself into books and so many odd and strange stories and they have made my life infinitely brighter.

I’ve heard people say of the authors of these books ‘they’re very good, but why don’t they write proper books?’ (I’ve heard this said of sci-fi writers and crime writers too). But these books are proper books. They’re fascinating and wonderful, and use their strangeness to explore aspects of human nature that an ‘ordinary’ book couldn’t even begin to examine. And I love them.

So if you have a strange book in you, no matter how odd or weird or bizarre, please write it. The world needs its strange books.

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