Friday 12 June 2015

Jenny Diski’s End Notes

Every now and then, Twitter has its uses. Someone retweeted this interview with author Jenny Diski. She's not someone whose work I'm familiar with, but on the basis of this article I will endeavour to become so. 

She's dying of terminal lung cancer, and she's writing about it. Brought to mind journalist John Diamond (Nigella Lawson's husband) who chronicled his own experience of the disease, which was adapted to television as A Lump in my Throat with Drop the Dead Donkey's Neil Pearson.

That aside, I thought this article was a fascinating read. 

In person, Diski is much like her prose: She talks about herself, and her present condition, with poised alienation. “It’s a unique experience,” she said of dying. “I’ve never done it before, and I won’t be doing it again.”...
She was eager to set something straight. However nonchalant she may have seemed the day before, she wanted me to know that the reality of her experience was far more complicated: “I’m perfectly capable of holding two, or more, contradictory things in my mind. If I say, on the one hand, ‘Death is an awfully big adventure’ (thank you Peter Pan for that quote) and swig morphine and tell jokes with Ian, that doesn’t also mean that I’m not terrified at the prospect of my own nonexistence.” 

A thoroughly thought-provoking interview. You can also follow her on Twitter: @diski

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