Two very charming and unusual websites which humanise ideas and writing – first Web of Stories which consists of videos of short chats of people explaining how the creative process has worked for them
It began as an archive of life stories told by some of the great scientists of our time. As the number of stories grew, it became obvious that some were on related topics and a web was slowly being created of connected stories. After a while we also invited famous people outside the field of science to tell their life stories.We are now opening up Web of Stories to everyone, inviting you to help make our web of stories grow. We all have wonderful stories to share, and have family and friends whose tales we would like to hear. So tell your stories, and invite others to tell theirs.
Each contribution lasts little more than a couple minutes but often you will find a series of such sessions eg from Diana Athill, a marvellous nonogarian who was a publisher and came to writing quite late in life. I was just reading her Life Class a few days ago which has an excellent Introduction by Ian Jack
Somehow, watching and listening to a “character” speak seems to offer a richer experience. Frankly speaking, a lot of talk is drivel but, in front of a tape recorder or camera/video, people discipline themselves a bit better - while still allowing themselves the spontaneity and sidetracks which you often miss with written interviews.
The second website is a blog based on the great idea of getting together with a writer in a pub or wine bar – with the additional frisson of the context being Germany (although the text English!). The blog is called Drinking with German Writers and it really gives a marvellous feeling for one particular side of German life. Very worthwhile! It reminds me of the blog of a German journalist (whose address I will hopefully give shortly) who spent a month in each of 10 global cities and wrote a book about it – and is now doing the same thing in Germany. This month she is in Trier.