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Robert John Goddard
Seeheim-Jugenheim
So - who am I? I was born in Thames Ditton, Surrey, in 1952. I attended the local school until 1963, passed the 11 plus exam and went to Rutlish School, Wimbledon. I have a B.A. in History (1976), a Postgraduate Diploma in International Marketing (1990), and a Masters Degree in Education (1996). I have lived and worked in Italy, Portugal, Jordan and Germany. All of my novels contain elements of my experiences in these places. I currently live near Frankfurt with my German wife and 14-year-old son, Anton. I also have a 38-year-old son, Alexander, from my first marriage. I have written 6 novels and 2 novellas as well as several short stories and a book for university teachers entitled: "Teaching English for International Business." People frequently ask me what my books are about! That is a difficult one to answer but I often begin my reply by saying the books are not about me or my life and, to a certain extent, this is true. However, there are a number of themes that I come back to again and again. The first of these is how the past can impact on the present, and the second theme, perhaps related to the first, is the relationship between parents and children. Why is this? Perhaps because I have been fascinated by history as long as I can remember and that fascination remained intact even after studying the subject at university. History has not helped much in my academic career but it has clearly influenced me in more subtle ways that I only now recognise. When I am not writing, I do some teaching; I study German and keep fit by cycling and walking in the hills between Darmstadt and Heidelberg either alone or with my wife and son.
Recent Activity
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Imagine the scenario. It should not be difficult because you will have seen it before. The lines of human beings awaiting judgement. Who is the most beautiful? Who has the most muscle? Who is going to walk away with the million-dollar cheque? Who will be elected to the chair, the... Continue reading
Posted 17 hours ago at Thoughts and words
Robert John Goddard is now following hori
Dec 4, 2019
Robert John Goddard is now following Nerdcentric
Dec 4, 2019
Robert John Goddard is now following ににっち
Dec 4, 2019
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I love travelling; or is it that I love being in motion? Being in motion makes me feel alive, alive in the here and now. Is "alive" the right word? Would it be better, more precise, to use the word "rejuvenated"? Yes, there is no question that looking through a... Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Do you know this novel? It appears to be a romantic story about romantic love - or is it? Is it romantic love that drives the elderly protagonist to have an affair with a 14-year-old girl? How is it that we are, ourselves, seduced into feeling that somehow this "love"... Continue reading
Posted Nov 20, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Why do humans learn language in the first place? That is an easy question to answer, isn't it? Because we need and want to communicate with others and exchange thoughts and feelings about events and express who we are. OK. That is all well and good, but we can also... Continue reading
Posted Nov 18, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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https://www.amazon.co.uk/Scenes-Endless-Summers-Robert-Goddard-ebook/dp/B081H16R56/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=robert+john+goddard&qid=1574062405&sr=8-1 Who, exactly, are Irene Castle and Toni Burano? They love to dance, they love to love and they love to spend their summers in Budleigh Salterton, but the story of Toni and Irene is a story of survival against all odds. They do their best to lead the perfect... Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Those who are long enough in the tooth will remember the Conservative politician, John Profumo, largely because of his affair with model, Christine Keeler, in 1961. This affair, and Profumo's lies to parliament, led to his political downfall. Although Profumo did more than enough to redeem himself in the following... Continue reading
Posted Sep 25, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Appearance and reality - creating our own history and telling it to our friends, partner, work colleagues and, most importantly, to ourselves. Why do we do this? Well, perhaps, we do it in order to give our lives meaning and purpose and, by allowing our history to inform the present,... Continue reading
Posted Aug 13, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Do human beings expect too much? And do these expectations - or rather, these unfulfilled expectations - lead inexorably to discontent with life? Simply asking this question inspires numerous plot possibilities and themes for novels. Why I am thinking about this anyway? Partly because I am currently participating in an... Continue reading
Posted Jul 25, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Glancing through my blog, I get the impression that two themes stand out, these are: the pursuit of happiness and the influence that memory can have on our writing. For example, a previous blog on happiness can be found at https://www.thoughtsandwords.eu/blog/2018/12/chasing-happiness.html This piece picks up on the theme of happiness... Continue reading
Posted Jun 26, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Which is the more effective story-telling, the first or the second examples below? Here is the first example. Men and women tend to have a different focus on life. Here is the second example. The phone rings. It is my wife. She has arrived safely in the US. Now I... Continue reading
Posted Jun 11, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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A number of well-known books deal with the passage of time. As an ageing man, I feel able to fully engage and empathise with this theme. Nor, of course, and judging by the number of well-known books on the topic, am I alone here. Swanns Way by Proust, Labyrinths by... Continue reading
Posted Jun 2, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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"What is your book about?" Readers often ask me this question. "They are not about me," I reply, but I would say that, wouldn't I? "My writing is not necessarily an act of self-expression," I say. "I take a topic that interests me - war, love, the relationship with the... Continue reading
Posted May 7, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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The Only Story by Julian Barnes is the story of a 19-year-old youth who falls in love with a married, middle-aged woman. It is a powerful story about how the passion and tragedy of love dissolve into each other. But for me, it is also about how first love can... Continue reading
Posted May 3, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Cigarette in hand, Saville-Row-black-and-white-suited, laughing and joking, he strides through home-made-black-and-white-film and his adored and adoring family. This was the man who said that artists' work should express the country of their birth, their religion, their love affairs. In short, their work should be the sum total of their experiences,... Continue reading
Posted Apr 5, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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After a hectic day, my wife consulted her Fitbit and announced her intention of completing her daily quota of steps by going on a "little night walk" around the town. "Night Walk" - what a title for a film, a novel or a novella! "Night Walk." Career woman under stress... Continue reading
Posted Mar 13, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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For sale now on Amazon: "...because it was you..." It is 1990 and 70-year-old novelist Tommy Mostyn thinks he is at the end of the road and that his writing life is over. He decides to spend one last holiday in the Italian city of Verona, a place where he... Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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At the time of the Profumo Affair (1961 - 1963) I was between 9 and 11 years old. When the affair blew up, I did not pay much attention to allegations of a sexual liaison between the man in the pic, John Profumo (Secretary of State for War in Harold... Continue reading
Posted Jan 24, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Here's a story. "I was in the pub last night and there was this foreign bloke, loud and aggressive, you know, talking about the Brits and telling everyone what a bunch of idiots they are over Brexit and all that." As it stands, this is not a very interesting story.... Continue reading
Posted Jan 17, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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This morning, 16 January 2019, the BBC News is full of Brexit, of yesterday's vote on May's proposed "deal" with the EU. There is a lot of talk about how British business feels about it. Angry, impatient, frustrated are just some of the words used. My immediate thoughts were not... Continue reading
Posted Jan 16, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Mats Staub calls himself a story collector. The stories he collects are personal memories that mirror history. The memories are Erinnerungen ans Erwachsenwerden or "memories of growing up" and the storytellers are "ordinary" people, that is, people like you and me talking about their transition to adulthood. These ordinary people... Continue reading
Posted Jan 13, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Am I the same person I was in 1980? Is there a fundamental “me” which may change a bit but which remains fundamentally the same? Well, what do you think? Do you, dear reader, like to think that staying the way you always were is a sign of your integrity?... Continue reading
Posted Jan 11, 2019 at Thoughts and words
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Another language, music, values and history. Can we, as adults, take these on as our own? And if we can, will the people of our adopted country allow you to do it or do they want you to remain different? Should you also take on another history and/or the guilt... Continue reading
Posted Jan 3, 2019 at Thoughts and words