(Christmas is drawing near and an interesting idea for a very special present has popped up. See end bracket.)
But now, a competition. I'm going to write out six words. The magazine will give SOME MONEY to anyone who can guess, by the time they get to the end of the article, what the words have in common. We're going to have to take it on trust that you won't cheat, but if you can't trust literary people, who can you trust? The words are Swelling, Collating, You 'n' All, Barbie (as in Doll rather than Klaus), Doner (as in kebab) and Loo-seat (as in bathroom). Good luck.
Meanwhile, back to television. For the literary person, the most intriguing programme over these past months has been the BBC's lavish Bleak House. The comparison between this 8-part adaptation and the original novel raises many interesting questions: whether the complexity of Dickens's plots and the idiosyncrasy of his characters need