Published on September 25th, 2013
Digby, 24, West London
Digby is a 24-year-old writer from unfashionable West London who enjoys walking, tinned food and pseudo-intellectual pop music. If you fancy sharing a plate of corned beef, email firstname.lastname@example.org quoting box no 2509. (BHL fans need not apply.)
What are you reading at the moment?
This might come across as a bit ‘behold my deadly serious reading habits’, but I’m on Hans Fallada’s Alone in Berlin, Graham Greene’s Ways of Escape and V by Thomas Pynchon — I’m getting a bit confused, to be honest.
What have you just finished reading?
Mary McCarthy’s The Company She Keeps. My paperback has one of those generic upper-middle-brow chicklit covers, so I started without much enthusiasm. By the end of the first paragraph, though, I was utterly besotted.
What will you read next?
Tom Bower’s biography of Conrad Black, and also Trollope’s The Way We Live Now; there’s a logic in there somewhere, I’m convinced.
Which author do you have a crush on?
As an impression: Jane Austen, Zadie Smith, Baudelaire, Olivia Manning, Mary McCarthy, Madame de Lafayette, Jonathan Meades… from here on in it gets really embarrassing.
What’s the sexiest thing you’ve ever read?
Oo-er. Whatever it was it wasn’t by Philip Roth. Les Fleurs du mal, perhaps. The most memorable sex scene I’ve ever read must be in Lautréamont’s Les Chants de Maldoror, wherein the eponymous anti-hero gets off with a shark for a good twenty pages. Had the Bad Sex Award existed in post-Commune Paris, it would’ve been a shoo-in.
Which book would you give someone you’re trying to impress?
If I wrote self-help books, I’d say it had to be an extension of a personal brand, but I don’t so I won’t; I think as long as it can’t be shelved under ‘Critical Theory’ (ahem), ‘Humour’ (debatable, but do you really want to risk looking like Colin Hunt off the Fast Show?) or ‘Fantasy’ (which absolutely goes without saying), you’re probably on safe ground. I last attempted to impress with Martin Amis’s The Information. I have absolutely no idea why things didn’t work out.