Ever bumped into the same psycho three times in the same week who said he was gonna kill you? I felt like I was being followed. It was just as well I was on my bike each time. I still see him walking around Roath with his alsatians now, but he doesn't recognise me anymore. But the way he threatened to rip my head off over nothing left a big enough impression for me to include it in my story One of the Cullens. I spent a lot of my time that week wondering why he was so angry, which filtered its way to the character going through a break up. People are so vulnerable when they've broken up with someone and anger isn't unknown. I guess it's a reaction to you not being able to bend others to your will and trying to use the most desperate (and only) tactic you have left, but this sounds too judgemental. I have no sympathy for the nutter who was shouting at me to come back so he could kill me at 8.30 in the morning but I tried to write his fictional alter ego to be sympathetic. If anything I should be grateful for his intervention in my life as not only did he give me an idea for a short story, he also made me think about how anger and reactions to bad things can impact on others. So thank you, psycho who called me a pussio and wanted to kill me, for making me a better person.
We’ve all met someone like Jolyon, the main character of The Pavement Poet - snarky, unkind, and unwilling to take things in good faith. Come to think of it, I’ve been that person myself on many occasions, only to realise later on that being judgmental where no judgment was needed was an ungenerous and selfish way to be in the world. But that’s the difference between me and Jolyon. That’s why he gets what’s coming to him in the first story in Things that Make the Heart Beat Faster. I wrote Jolyon the way he is to remind myself how not to act and think. I can only hope that I’m not like him most of the time.