Dreams of 2016

I watched Peter Ibbetson on New Year’s Eve. I can’t think of many more romantic films to watch with someone you love; and to leave you feeling you’ve been given something special without actually taking. I was so grateful: we need less on the outside and more on the inside (a film … a whole world, and in this film a world of love-dreams). But this won’t make sense unless I set the scene a little.
       For one reason or another, as 2015 ground its time out, various things about the job I do, a psychotherapist, had started to grate with me even more than usual. The organisations I belong to (BACP, UKCP) seemed more destructively irrelevant than ever. Seeing their bland, glossy magazines land on my doormat felt as if I’d been given a speeding ticket. And the theory. The stuff that some psychotherapists cling onto like DeForrest Kelley, the original Star Trek’s Dr McCoy, held onto his scanner-thing that took readings (‘It’s life Jim, but not as we know it’)   … oh God, the theory. Continue reading “Dreams of 2016”

Writing, or Writing About

It’s a small distinction, but one that always feels very important to me: that it’s possible to write ‘about’ or simply  to write. Writers I like, even when they are writing about a specific subject, seem to be doing something that conjures up all kinds of magic in me. People who write about a novel, for example, seem to be doing something the author never intended to do … they thematise, explain and elucidate. People who write may begin with, for example again, the subject of a novel, and of course they may elucidate, but what seems to happen in their writing is unpredictable, almost alive, and allows me to experience something other than the novel itself – its bones or whatever might be left after they’ve picked over it. Continue reading “Writing, or Writing About”