Around 11.30 p.m. on Wednesday, 7 June, I made a mistake that meant I lost a couple of hours’ work, then I walked into the side of a door and cut my forehead: not the best prelude to my Canadian adventure. I needed a break.
The next morning Pauline drove me to Dublin Airport, and I caught my plane to Toronto. I was tired, not having slept well (in fact I wouldn’t get a good sleep till I was home again). Seven hours later we landed, giving me two hours to catch my Ottawa flight. Queuing at customs, check-in and security took up most of this, but I made my connection.
I took a taxi to the Crowne Plaza hotel—across the river in Gatineau, Quebec—checked in, and had a walk around. That part of Gatineau is quite unprepossessing. I was surprised at how much French was spoken. I had a Subway sandwich, disoriented by the time change. The hotel was quiet and, to my surprise, the tiny bar sold no beer: this would be a source of wonderment to some of the editors all weekend and beyond. Continue reading
Filed under Stories, Work
Most of the material I edit, proofread or index doesn’t hold much intrinsic interest for me, frankly. Sometimes, though, I get to work on a book that really appeals to me. Lately I had this experience when I compiled an index for a book on Carl Jung and the medieval mystics who inspired him, and a couple of years ago I enjoyed indexing A.J. McGrath’s The Dark Ground of Spirit: Schelling and the Unconscious.
One passage of McGrath’s, referring to Jacob Boehme, expressed something that has often occurred to me: that we can’t be, and shouldn’t try to be, utterly selfless, caring only about others:
Boehme’s psychological point is simple enough to state: there is no alterity without ipseity, no self-donation without a latent self-assertion. This is not to say that love is selfish: self-assertion without self-donation is the essence of evil. But without the seed of selfishness, held in potency, not actualized, there would be no self to be overcome and given away. Continue reading
Details of my service, and how to contact me, are laid out here. I have 32 years’ publishing experience, and will be happy to discuss your requirements with regard to large or small editing, proofreading, indexing or writing projects.