Guest Blogging Dream Team: Member #4

(Posted by Ben)

(If you’re wondering what this is all about, click here.)

D H Lawrence and Morrissey might well be regarded as grumpy old men, but neither of them accepted being labelled as such by agreeing to appear on the BBC2 series of that name – unlike the fourth member of my Guest Blogging Dream Team, Will Self.

For many if not most bloggers, their blog is at times an outlet for grumbles, gripes and general complaints about their lot in life – a release valve, somewhere they can let off steam. Of course, in many cases this reads like nothing more than tedious and self-indulgent whingeing, but I could listen to Self grumble for hours, and there’s no reason to believe that he’d be any less engaging if afforded access to a blog.

A significant part of his appeal is his phenomenal and rightly legendary mastery of the English language. Though he’s as quotable as Morrissey, he eschews the pithy in favour of the verbose. The rich and labyrinthine sentences of Self’s novels and essays lead the reader on a merry dance and frequently demand re-reading, expanding his or her vocabulary immeasurably along the way.

As comfortably at home on ‘Newsnight Review’, on the restaurant review pages of The Observer and as a team captain on ‘Shooting Stars’, he – like many bloggers – takes an active interest in both the high-brow and the low-brow, and would be just as willing to share his perceptive insights on ‘Big Brother’ and Eurovision as he would on the machinations of the political system or the finer points of philosophy.

Of course, if he was to decide to leave aside the erudite and astute social commentary, there’d always be the chance that we might be treated to some new short fiction and thereby invited to marvel not only at the awesome power of his language but also at the power of his riotous imagination.

The Guest Blogging Dream Team so far: D H Lawrence, Alan Bennett, Morrissey and Will Self.

Member #5 to be unveiled tomorrow.

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