I read a really interesting piece in The Guardian this saturday (15.10.11) in which celebrities are invited to write letters to their 16-year-old selves. What a fascinating idea and how wonderful to have some extremely interesting celebs. I mean, if the author could only muster people like Miley Cyrus, or Justin Beiber, then perhaps this would not have had such an impact (not that those people are not interesting obviously); but Joseph Galliano, who has collected this work together, has managed to get the services of Stephen King; James Belushi; Gene Hackman; Kathleen Turner and many more.
This is a really fascinating idea and something that made me think what would I say to myself twenty-two years on. Stephen King's entry was particularly moving, talking of not wasting his talent on drugs and of failing to enjoy his own success. His was a letter of remorse but there is some argument that his experiences would not have made him the man he is today. James Belushi wrote of his need to be noticed and to understand that there is positive and negative attention. he also reminded himself where he was sitting at that particular point in his life: jail. Gene Hackman's letter was very short. a choice between Marines or acting.
The book is called Dear Me: More Letters to My Sixteen-year-old Self and is out on 27th October.
This is a great idea, unique and offering a personal yet unusual insight into famous people's lives. Perhaps this is something that should be done more often. as I turn 39 I was thinking about writing to five people in the world who have influenced the way I think, as long as they're still alive. Choosing those people is quite daunting. Having read this piece, thanks to the Guardian, I shall take my idea a little more seriously.