Monday, March 7, 2011

January 1938

"With the new year of 1938, [when Asimov turned 18], a turning point came in my personal life that might have seemed of the most trivial character.

I started a diary.

In itself, this was not remarkable. ... In most cases, I suspect, a diary lasts for a few days, a few weeks, a year at most. Sometimes, though, it endures, and in my case it did. It is still going on today [1979], and dozens of annual diaries stand side by side on my shelf.

... I began with the intention of recording everything of significance each day. And I did - at least what I regarded as significant. I reported the news each day in incredible detail and from a very partisan pro-New Deal and anti-Nazi slant. I also reported baseball games in even more incredible detail.

...As time went on, hhowever, I grew less interested in baseball and less preoccupied in converting my diary page into a compendium of newspaper headlines. I wrote in a larger hand, rarely filled the page, and eventually my diary became a kind of compact literary and social record of my life.

Whether I wrote at length or briefly, however, it was never my intention to say anything in the diary that it was no one's business but my own to know. I relied on my memory for for any secret or disgraceful items.

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