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Sam Hawksmoor
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The Repossession of Genie Magee
The Repossession
of Genie Magee
can you take your
with you?


24 Years online
••• The International Writers Magazine -

What Me Worry?
• Sam Hawksmoor
How's your memory right now?


OK, I have a new worry. I read the brilliant non-fiction book The Road to Unfreedom by Prof Timothy Synder and sat down to review it, only to discover that I already read it and reviewed it back in 2018.  I have zero memory of ever reading this terrifying book about Putin funding and secretly supporting all the far right groups in the world to destabilise democracy.  It’s an important subject, but how the hell did I forget I read it already?  What was I doing in 2018 (travelling to Africa, USA and France mostly and trying to find a home to buy in the UK).  I’m pretty sure that I can remember most of the books on my shelves and yes we have all bought a book by a favourite author only to discover it is one you already read with a new cover. Grr. But at least by the time you get one chapter in you know you have already read it. I bought Leigh Bardugo’s latest novel ‘Hell Bent’ the other day. Turns out it’s a sequel to the paranormal novel set in Yale, ‘Ninth House’, which, phew, I remember reading two years ago. I hope Bardugo returns to the Grishaverse next. Journeys to hell I can do without really.

So what the heck, is this the first sign of Alzheimer’s?  Should I be worried?  I’m the type of person who can hear a snatch of film music and know which movie it was from and if pushed, where I saw said movie. I can generally recall where I was year by year but probably not addresses or old phone numbers. If fact it takes me months to remember a phone number or even worse, my pin numbers. I hate changing bankcards, as I had to do following a scam attempt last year. (Beware of downloading parking apps in London. You need a different one for every damn council district since they abolished cash). You have to think some people are getting big brown envelopes filled with cash in councils from the app people because it would have been a lot simpler to use tap and pay for parking.

I put myself to the test yesterday and watched ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’ on TV and happily remembered most of what was coming, the mashed potato etc and even the names of some of the cast. So that part of my cognitive memory is still intact. It’s still a great movie by the by.

My novel The Repossession of Genie Magee is ultimately about memory - and if it will ever be possible to download a person's memory. Everytime you see someone on a Star Trek spin off beam up, quantum computers have to not only remember their body shape, clothes (apparently) but also their memory - everytime they teleport. You think that will ever be possible? Or will they start to lose part or some of their memories or worse, pick up someone elses during transmission? These are the sort of things I think about. Especially when I think about my own memory.

Anyway, so there are a million other things to worry about in August. The world temperatures, massive crop failures because of the heat (stock up on wine, pasta, rice whilst you still can people).  The whole net zero thing that is totally unaffordable for ordinary people, especially older people who can’t afford to replace their cars with electric, or their gas boilers, or insulate their homes or install solar and don’t want to be forced onto a bicycle at seventy.  There is worse news; as mentioned before my holly bush is laden with berries this year and that can only mean a severe cold winter is coming.  My niece wants me to visit in Miami for Christmas and I’m tempted.  One wonders if I’ll even remember going there given the above worries.     
© Sam Hawksmoor August 2023
Hawksmoor fiction here

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