Wrestliana – Jemmy Dover

There were some things I didn’t expect to be able to find out, whilst researching Wrestliana. For example, in the ‘Preliminary Observations’ at the beginning of his novel Henry and Mary, William Litt says – I have observed real dates and facts, which prevented me from complying with the desire of several friends, who wished me to introduce […]

Wrestliana Doings

As some of you may have been directed here by the Galley Beggar newsletter, here’s some info about the forthcoming Wrestliana and wrestling-related events. I don’t usually post this kind of thing, but it would be great if you were able to come along and say hello: 7th June 2018, 7.30pm – Wrestliana launch at Cakes […]

Junot Díaz – ‘My Full Account of Cruelties Towards People’

Last year, I gave a lecture on ‘Success!!!’ and how to cope with it. I quoted Junot Díaz extensively, and approvingly. (I also used some words from him as the epigraph of my non-fiction book, Wrestliana: ‘You wrestle with your family your entire life.’) In the midst of the dismaying, appalling accusations against him, I […]

Wrestliana – William’s Lake Walk

WILLIAM’S LAKE WALK In 1824, William Litt wrote an account of his attendance at the Windermere Regatta. It was published in the local paper, the Cumberland Pacquet. I think it’s probably his best piece of writing, outside his book Wrestliana. Although I tried, I couldn’t find anywhere to include it – or even mention it […]

Notes for a Young Gentleman

The opening of the new novel:     and the opening of the new novel:   Until you have read this through, do not write in it. If you choose to do so thereafter, that is your own mistake. It was spooked England, all laid out below and invisibly rushing up towards one—thirty-two feet per […]

Wrestliana ; Or, an Historical Account of Ancient and Modern Wrestling

      This is the original Wrestliana – my great-great-great grandfather’s history of wrestling (as the oldest and greatest sport in the world) Two shillings and sixpence is what it would have cost you in 1823. In 2018, a first edition will cost you around £800. If you can find one. It’s still available print-on-demand – […]

Wrestliana – Things to do with wrestling with things to do with things to do with wrestling

[This is a different version of the first chapter of the book – currently up on the Galley Beggar website.] The story of my great-great-great grandfather’s life is the best true story I know. It has everything – a strong, handsome, charismatic, tragic lead man (William Litt). It involves crime, disloyalty, poetry, love. It’s a […]