My name isn't Gordon and I'm not an alcoholic. I didn't grow up in Manchester. I don't have two sisters. They didn’t get married to the wrong types. I never played until dusk in concrete playgrounds banked on all sides by overbearing high rises and yelling mothers. I never got abuse from my drug dealing father. I didn't go trick or treating to the rich part of town and I don't remember getting drunk on cheap wine from Oddbins. I didn't try smack, or crack, weed or whizz. I didn't get cut in an alley on the way to the pub, or cut him back when I saw him in town a month later. I didn't go to art college or learn to deal weed to the rich kids in the pub after. I don't recall an arrest. I didn't do time in Dachau, Auschwitz, Belsen. I didn't think the time I didn't serve in Strangeways would last so long. I didn't make friends with a minister or the screws. I didn't fall in love with Sylvia in the library. I didn't forever lose myself in the showers. I don't remember how long the riot lasted. I don't think about how long it didn't take for the doctors to remove all the shards of glass that didn't get embedding in my body. I don't remember feeling how the rays of the Sun felt so much sweeter on my skin after the day I didn't get released. I don't think I don't live in denial. I don't know why I couldn't ever get a job. I don't like fruit machines. I don't like the pub. I don't like the way the stiffs look at me. I don't recall sleeping on a park bench. I don't know how to find scraps behind Pizza Hut. I don't remember ending up in hospital. I don't know how long the surgery took. I don't remember the day my sister didn't pick me up and take me to her new house in Milton Keynes with her new husband. I still don't know how to make a dining table. I don't think I learned anything. I can't remember my next hospital visit. I don't know who could give me a liver. I don't know if God will ever forgive me?
Terry Pratchett, English humorist, satirist and author, was born today in 1948.
Ian Rankin, Scottish crime writer, was born today in 1960.