This New York Times articlemade me wish I were heading through Heathrow this week, not just to visit London but to check out the airport’s writer-in-residence: author Alain de Botton, (How Proust Can Change Your Life and The Art of Travel).
As the Times reports, the gig was orchestrated by Heathrow’s public relations firm (which includes the author’s expenses as well as an advance — he’s writing a book about the experience to be published this fall), but de Botton was given free rein to write about anything and everything he sees during the week: “If I find a cockroach in the restaurant, if someone drops dead at the airport, I’m going to write about it and send it to the publisher.”
Nonwriters might imagine holding out for an assignment for which an airport was a means to an end, but a Heathrow spokeswoman told the times that de Botton “bit our arms off to be involved in the project,” and I can see why. Part of the fun of traveling for a lot of us is the people-watching in airports: the leave-taking and reuniting, the restlessness and anxiety, the myriad ways people act and react to anything from delays to security lines.
But it’s nice to see a PR campaign that’s more literary than celebrity oriented. Maybe this will be the start of a new trend – de Botton, for one, seems to be hoping so: he “is already fantasizing about more posts. “I’d like to be a writer in residence at a nuclear power station,” he said.”
Midge's blog: http://www.midgeraymond.com/blog/
Causes Midge Raymond Supports
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, Mercy Corps, Doctors without Borders, Coffee Kids, Northwest Harvest, Treehouse for Kids, Angeline's Day Shelter for...