Britain's first book blogger (November 2000)

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Holes in paper

I don’t find solitude agonizing, on the contrary. Holes in paper open and take me fathoms from anywhere.
For days and nights now, I've wondered about the space between everyday corporeal existence and those holes in paper. Just wondered, without purchase. Then I read about Robert Shields and his diary.
For twenty years, Robert Shields of Dayton, Washington, has kept a written record of absolutely everything that has happened to him, day and night. For no less than four hours each day, Shields holes himself up in the small office in his home, turns on his stereo, and types. His diary, at 35 million words, is believed to be the world’s longest.
The gif showing a page of the diary is grim and melancholy.
The entire day is accounted for. I don't leave anything out. I start in at midnight and go through the next midnight, and every five minutes is accounted for.
Fathoms from, indeed.

1 comment:

  1. When I read Mr. Shields or even think about doing what he's done I feel like I'm sinking into hole in my own head. A fever dream times ten.

    I just received "Frost" from amazon the other day. Clearly an early first novel with many of the themes he would later flesh-out (again and again) but I'm loving every sentence of it. It sheds so much light on his later works (which is what's nice about having read him in reverse).

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