It's amazing how things seem obvious after the event. Birds are descended from two legged dinosaurs; computing technology (information processing) would converge with communications and media in universal technologies like the iPad; the girl you "liked" as a teenager actually liked you in just the same way.
I was passing the Churchill Square shopping centre in Brighton on
Tuesday. It was a brisk winter's day and both inside and outside were
packed with shoppers preparing for Christmas. Seeing WHSmiths at the end
of a row of shops took me back to when I was about 7 years old,
spending my gift tokens in that same shop in the days between Christmas
and New Year.
WHSmiths is something between a newsagent, stationary store and a
bookshop - a good choice when giving school kids tokens. When I went to
spend mine, I found a Petite kids typewriter, almost exactly like the one below (isn't Google wonderful - I couldn't even remember the name, let alone what it looked like earlier today). I probably bought it because my dad
had a grown-ups' typewriter and it looked like fun though whether he
thought so when typing up lecture notes, correspondence and reports I
don't know. I scraped together all my Christmas money and bought the
typewriter. It was not a precision engineered machine, but it worked for
a while and gave me some pleasure, albeit at the expense of ink stains
on clothes and carpets.
There were other pointers too, like writing a couple of half decent poems, a few stories and keeping diaries when I was around that age. My mum was certainly proud of them - though that is obviously not a very convincing argument in itself!
Perhaps the trouble was that writing seemed like such a normal skill that unless you were going to write novels or be a journalist, how could you use it to make money? It's only now that I realise that behind every well written website, brochure or advert is someone whose speciality is words. And there are many poorly written websites sorely in need of such people.
I can do that. Seems obvious?