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Nicholas Tamblyn is an author of both fiction and nonfiction. He was formerly a journalist, public policymaker, filmmaker, and researcher with an animal rights organization. His time based in Bangkok and Manila has also influenced the subjects of his writing. He lives just outside Melbourne, Australia, with his wife, author and illustrator Katherine Eglund. For the latest information, follow his blog and updates on social media.

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Latest Posts

Schrödinger Was A Physicist But Also A Father

October 26, 2018
Our baby son was stirring yet again in the next room, and again returned to silence; and this time I thought I would read about the personal life of Edwin Schrödinger. Sure enough, while he led an unorthodox life when it came to relationships (when he moved to Dublin it was, on obtaining the visas, with a ménage à trois), he formulated his most popularly famous thought experiment—the cat in the box paradox where he asked, “when does a quantum system stop existing as a superposition of states and become one or the other?”—in 1935, the year after the birth of his daughter (albeit with an Austrian colleague’s wife). When your baby is in the crib in the next room, you are fairly sure everything is going fine, and yet the best way to be sure is to take a look, but then you might wake the baby—not causing the baby any real harm, but probably depriving them of further sleep and you (and perhaps even the neighbours) of rest. Rather than the poison and radioactivity of Schrödinger, all in their genetic makeup and everything in the world may be a potential threat to your newborn. The longer the nap, the greater the temptation you will have to look, or even to lean close and gently prod your baby. If they nap continuously for approaching three hours, in our house at least you begin to expect a cry (or a more conclusive movement in the near-dark), and if it doesn’t come—well, you wait longer; but how much longer do you wait? A nap can be short or intermittent, but at a certain point a nap becomes overly long from yours and your baby’s perspective. It’s possible that the birth of his first child had no impact of this kind on him, that, as it was an unconventional situation with his colleague and his colleague’s wife, he spent less time lingering outside the nursery of his baby daughter. But the somewhat sinister principle—of something or someone being alive and dead and only one or the other when you cannot help but take a look—comes readily to mind when we check fretfully if our baby is sleeping or awake, and alive or dead. That paradoxical cat in the box, however, could have seemed more reasonably poetic to Schrödinger than the baby in the nursery.

Jean-Christophe by Romain Rolland (The Complete 10-Volume Novel)

July 19, 2018
Who knows how it is we come to great books, at least those that are not at the inescapable centre of “accepted literature.” I came to Jean-Christophe because I kept reading about it in (nonfiction) books about humanism and animal rights. As I wrote in the introduction to the Complete 10-Volume edition of Jean-Christophe (see this site’s page about it here or the Amazon link here), Romain Rolland’s epic novel should be known, read, and celebrated in a similar way to Proust’s—perhaps it is moreso in some parts of Europe—though it is no doubt true that the extent of the achievement in literary writing (and its being more than twice as long) puts In Search of Lost Time even further into its own unique category and sophisticated descriptive sphere all its own. As I read the long novel, and as I wrote that introduction, I felt the uneasy feeling of someone that knows a particular work of art should be spoken about and beloved “for all time,” as certain masterly and fortunate artworks are, and knowing too that, like Proust, few people will have read the volumes when they came out (in French or English) and, in a world of moment-to-moment distractions, perhaps fewer people today, when the levels of education have reached new heights and into more corners around the globe than ever before, will hear of or consider venturing to read one volume let alone all ten. Who is the ideal reader? I would argue, anybody that loves literary fiction and messages of the value of art and of humanism. The message of humanism in Proust (like many works, long or short, that do not want to be over-explicit) is not as directly stated: Rolland comes right out and says it, examining how individuals and groups can construct a better society and also its most meaningful art, whereas it is in a love of the world itself and of art—the beautiful or spectacular details that we may come to miss by sleepwalking through life—that Proust compels his readers to admire anew and perhaps, with regenerated imagination, to share. I hope Jean-Christophe continues to find readers: as I wrote in the introduction, I believe it will. I was passionate about sharing the complete novel in one edition, and two paperbacks (Parts I and II together, and Part III) will be forthcoming. Below is an extract from the introduction; again, to get your copy of the book, please visit here. * *   *   * Proust and Rolland share many similarities as writers: their best work is very long—though Jean-Christophe (1904–1912) is not half the length of In Search of Lost Time (1913–1927)—and depicts the life of an artist largely in Paris (one from a smaller German town, the other a French one), in a writing style that shares the beauty or harsh truths of life moment to moment and idea to idea rather than through a stricter or more traditional plot. They both shine a light on what may appear to Read More

Seinfeld Sharing His Favourite Story About Show Business

April 18, 2018
Sometimes a story turns your head a little, or is an antidote to what you are likely to hear in every other corner of society, no matter how untrue and forceful the almost unspoken expectations of society can or in some ways must be. My favourite story of this kind is told by Jerry Seinfeld in the documentary “Comedian,” where he speaks with fellow (but struggling) comedian Orny Adams. There is never merely one way to live, and (within the bounds of common sense) if there is something you want to be at the centre or side of your life it is up to each of us to do what we want to do, not what is expected of us in the one life we have to live. Few people are shy about curtailing others’ dreams in one way or another, and at times we may be tempted to do the same thing (to ourselves) for a great variety of reasons close to hand; some things we want and that we get can also be used as the reason for not pursuing our other ambitions, however innate and natural in us they may be. But that is the shame rather than doing and aspiring to do the things that we’d like to do most. The story is below, and the clip from the film can also be seen here.   This is my favourite story about show business. Glenn Miller’s orchestra, they were doing some gig somewhere; they can’t land where they’re supposed to land because it’s winter, a snowy night. So they have to land in this field, and walk to the gig. And they’re dressed in their suits, they’re ready to play, they’re carrying their instruments. So they’re walking through the snow and it’s wet and slushy and in the distance they see this little house, and there’s lights on in the inside, and there’s a ball of smoke coming out of the chimney. And they go up to the house and they look in the window and they see this family. There’s a guy and his wife, and she’s beautiful, and there’s two kids and they’re all sitting around the table, and they’re smiling and laughing and they’re eating. There’s a fire in the fireplace. These guys are standing there in their suits and they’re wet and shivering and holding their instruments, and they’re watching this incredible Norman Rockwell scene. One guy turns to the other guy and goes, ‘How do people live like that?’

Essential Series by Golding Books

March 5, 2018
While the date of its publishing to Facebook will draw away into the distance (and I do intend to make it the pinned post later on when it’s been replaced by more and more new posts, for a time at least), the latest post there is a video sharing and linking to all of the books in The Essential Series by our convivial and benevolent publisher Golding Books. Many classics, older and new, are to be found in the collection, featuring introductions by myself as well as illustrations by my wife Katherine Eglund. It was truly a pleasure being part of the series and thereby a passionate proponent of its inspirational and significant books. We hope you enjoy a book or two from Golding Books’ The Essential Series! For reference, the post’s wording and links are as follows: Golding Books is proud to have released the 14th book in their Essential Series—the Louisa May Alcott collection, featuring “Little Women,” “Little Men,” and “Jo’s Boys,” with an introduction by Nicholas Tamblyn and illustrations by Katherine Eglund. Other books in the series also feature an introduction, and are available as eBooks (most priced at $1.99) and in paperback. Find the links to the timeless collections in The Essential Series below: “The Complete Confucius” – “The Analects,” “The Doctrine of the Mean,” and “The Great Learning” “The Essential Classics for Leaders” – “Tao Te Ching” by Lao Tzu, “The Art of War” by Sun Tzu, “Meditations” by Marcus Aurelius, and “The Prince” by Niccolò Machiavelli “The Essential Tales of Horror” – “Frankenstein” by Mary Shelley, “The Fall of the House of Usher” by Edgar Allan Poe, “Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde” by Robert Louis Stevenson, “The Picture of Dorian Gray” by Oscar Wilde, and “Dracula” by Bram Stoker “The Essential Tales of Wonder” – “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and “Through the Looking-Glass” by Lewis Carroll, “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” by L. Frank Baum, and “Peter Pan” by J. M. Barrie “The Essential Classic Romances” – “Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen, “Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Brontë, “Wuthering Heights” by Emily Brontë, and “The Age of Innocence” by Edith Wharton “The Essential Willa Cather” – “O Pioneers!,” “The Song of the Lark,” “My Ántonia,” and “One of Ours” “The Essential L. M. Montgomery” – “Anne of Green Gables,” “Anne of Avonlea,” “Anne of the Island,” and “Anne’s House of Dreams” “The Essential Jules Verne” – “Journey to the Center of the Earth,” “From the Earth to the Moon,” “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea,” and “Around the World in Eighty Days” “The Essential Robert Louis Stevenson” – “Treasure Island,” “Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and My Hyde,” “Kidnapped,” and “The Master of Ballantrae” “The Essential Mark Twain” – “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer,” “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” “The Prince and the Pauper,” and “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court” “The Essential Louisa May Alcott” – “Little Women,” “Little Men,” and “Jo’s Boys” “The Essential Frances Hodgson Burnett” – “The Secret Garden,” “Little Lord Fauntleroy,” “A Little Princess,” and “The Lost Prince” “Jean-Christophe” by Romain Rolland (The Complete Read More
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