Office Hall Office Door Office Map Office Desk Office Screen

To Orwell Today,

Dear Jackie,

Im sure that Im not the only avid reader of Orwell Today who has ever wondered about the daily activities you must encounter in running and maintaining such a wonderful website. Perhaps you could favor us with some photos of your study and a description of what a day is like in the trenches at Orwell Today.

Best regards,
Robert McGowin
Trinity School

Greetings Robert,

Thank you for being an avid reader of "Orwell Today" and for sharing your comments and questions regarding the website. I've enjoyed our previous correspondence about typewriters and cameras and your awakening to Orwell whose books you've devoured.

It's kind of godincidental that you asked for photos of "a day in the trenches" of "Orwell Today" because just a few weeks ago I snapped the ones at the top of the page to finish off a film I needed to develop.

The 1st photo is of the wall at the end of the hall, as a person approaches my office, which is the door on the right. The photos in the top frame are of Orwell's grave (thus the symbolic red rose), and the photos in the second frame are of Orwell's apartment on Canonbury Square which modelled many aspects of Winston's apartment in "1984".

The 2nd photo is of myself standing in front of my closed office door, holding an "Orwell Today" T-shirt. The picture above my shoulder is of Orwell caught in the lens of a pair of binoculars, with the words "Looking for Orwell" underneath.

The 3rd photo shows the top of a filing cabinet, corner shelf (with JFK looking over my shoulder), ever-present globe (wearing hat I got in Rwanda last year) and an all-important map of the world.

The 4th photo is of my computer and desk area, where I input the data for "Orwell Today". That's my glass paperweight next to my cat, which is resting her face on the scanner. She likes to oversee what I'm up to.

The 5th photo is a close-up of my "Orwell Today" webpage (smudgy screen and all).

A typical day starts with turning on the computer (around 6am) and going to Google News to see what happened in the world overnight. If the planet is still spinning I go and make myself a coffee (Rwandan) and then come back to the screen to read various newspapers on-line (firstly BBC). Then I go to the living room where I read the daily newspapers I subscribe to (the local and National Post) and where I continue reading books or printed-out material from the internet if I am in the process of researching something. When it comes time to write I return to the office and there I remain for various amounts of time - it could be hours, or all day, or not much at all - depending on what project I'm working on.

The website has evolved over these past seven years of its existence and doesn't require as much time as it used to. It's at the point now where, as John Lennon said, "there's nothing you can say that hasn't been said" (or words to that effect). That is why, to some extent, I'm updating less on the Home Page, and giving readers the opportunity to catch up on reading what already exists on the website. And also, in the meantime, I'm reading and going in directions where Orwell - my boss - leads me.

All the best,
Jackie Jura


Jackie Jura
~ an independent researcher monitoring local, national and international events ~

email: orwelltoday@gmail.com
website: www.orwelltoday.com