Novel Extract 5

A GUIDE TO THE MODERN WORLD

In London in 2019, try not to live within 3 miles of Hackney or Notting Hill, or you’ll be surrounded by 15 year olds selling coke, or 30 year olds buying it.

If you live in the UK, try to be suburban – it’s underrated. I’ve lived in Margate, Didsbury, and viewed places in Northampton on short term flatshares – IT FEELS LIKE A REALLY CHEAP BAD HOLIDAY.

The UK today is fine if you avoid the hard facts, if you look at any business, private or public sector, for too long you’ll start to worry that we’re all going to explode.

If you have friends who you feel are at risk, try to be ‘on the level’. Sometimes you’ll be answering the phone at 2am, or be on the other side of it, try not to make a habit of it. Talking on the phone is HUGELY beneficial compared to meeting in person or talking on messages. From my experience, the best approach from being on both sides of it is to try and not fill the air with advice, try and give the other person the benefit of the doubt that they are in distress rather than lying or panicking about nothing.

After you’ve talked to anyone, your brain will begin to decipher it the moment you hang up.

Suspension of disbelief is better than disbelief, common sense is usually wrong.

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