A couple of nights ago, at an excellent National Year of Reading forum at Whitefriars College, a student asked me if journalism was dead. I answered that journalism will never die because humans will always want to know about the things affecting other people’s lives. However, I did concede that newspapers, where I started out in the media, are definitely in the intensive care ward.
If I’d had my wits about me I might have recalled the recent robust discussion on Gruen Planet about the future of newspapers. The ever-entertaining Gruen team pointed to an advertising campaign by Britain’s Guardian newspaper that highlights why we will always need journos, even if they’re not transmitting stories to us via newsprint on dead trees.
I’m back to writing. Not as often as I’d like but at least keys are being pounded and ideas recorded.
As I’ve mentioned here before, I’d been considering writing my next story as a graphic novel, partly because I love stories told this way (everything from Tintin to Frank Miller’s Dark Knight Returns. I took a masterclass in writing comics and graphic novels last year and came away inspired but somewhat intimidated by the concept of writing in such an unfamiliar form. As a result, I procrastinated way too much.
So, while I can see the next book as a graphic novel, I’m going to write it in novel form first. Having made that decision, I’ve started sketching characters, scenes and more. I love these early stages of assembling a story.
The idea I have in mind is essentially a love story, but one concerned with fathers, sons and the links between generations. Which brings me to the title of this post.
A friend invited me to this documentary today and I really enjoyed it. Jiro Dreams Of Sushi has an 85-year-old sushi chef as its central character – a man whose alcoholic father died when he was seven. Jiro has worked for 75 years and is considered the best sushi chef in the world. He has no plans to retire, which feeds into the stories of his two sushi chef sons. It’s slow-burning, exquisite stuff.
And mouthwatering if you enjoy sushi. You can get a taste of the tale here: