Blimey, I’m starting to feel glad to be ancient. Apparently, the latest genre of writing to be expanding is what is known as Baby Boomer Lit.
It’s undoubtedly a trend in all aspects of entertainment, including books, film, music, fashion and exercise. There’s an increasing number of people who are living longer, so it would be foolish to ignore them as a consumer group.
I’ve never been keen on the term baby boomer to describe my generation. Mind you, I once asked my parents why they had me. I was only a little boy at the time, and I thought that they’d say something romantic about how they loved each other very much and wanted to have a baby to prove it. But no, the blunt reply was that: “Rationing ended, so we could afford to have you” – welcome to real world economics, Paul.
I’ve written stories with characters from eight years old to eighty, but have only concentrated on the complications of ageing a couple of times. Once was in a novella that contemplated what happens after a marriage partner chooses assisted suicide as a way out of suffering in life, with the bereaved widower having to begin again at 60. The other story portrayed a newly single divorcee spreading her wings at 50, trying to reinvent herself. This was partly based on some of the women I’ve met while computer dating. I may write more about what’s it like to age – after all, we’re advised to write about what we know.
Should any youngsters reading this post have wondered this very thing, let me propose that you think about when you’re going to stop listening to your favourite bands, drinking the booze you enjoy, indulging in the sex that floats your boat, driving too fast sometimes for a thrill – or even writing those stories that you spend so much time on…
Your answer will probably be never, I’m always going to do those things, as I love them.
Good for you, that’s exactly how I feel. Ageing really is a detail.