Paul Williams used to be a mean farmer near Canterbury. He spent his days on the fields and with his animals. He earned his money through agricultural work, but one day he became the most celebrated writer in England, to his own surprise, and left the farming life behind.
On a beautiful afternoon in April, he had a reading at the local library of Canterbury. He stood up on the small stage and cleared his throat. He was really nervous, as he hadn’t done anything like this before. More than twenty pairs of eyes stared at him while he was sweating, frowning and thinking about whether he should introduce himself first or not. Finally he decided to read his story aloud without any introduction.
“Everybody is here because they know me, don’t they?” he thought, and started reading the story that brought him fame: the Farmer Diary.
“I arrived at the market too late. The stands were almost empty, only a few people knocked about there. I wanted to buy some flowers for my new neighbour, I wanted to make a good impression on her, but I couldn’t find any, just a white dying violet. There was no other choice, so I bought it. That day wasn’t mine, anyway. I couldn’t sleep well at night, in the morning I couldn’t find my keys, then the dying violet. On my way home, it started raining, and it came to my mind that my clean clothes were hanging outside. When I arrived home, I parked the car. It was still raining, but I decided to give her the flowers now. As I walked towards my neighbour’s door, I stepped into a puddle accidentally, so my shoes became totally wet. It didn’t bother me, so I continued, when suddenly I fell off, into the mud. Fortunately, the flower didn’t get muddy. I stood in front of her door, totally wet and filthy with a flower in my hands, and knocked. The door opened in a few minutes. As the woman spotted me, a smile came to her beautiful face.
“Oh, c’est mon préféré” she said, took away the white violet, then closed the door in front of my nose.”
After the reading, his fans went to him, congratulated him, and asked for autographs. One of his enthusiastic fans was talking constantly while Paul gave her a signature. She was a young lady in her middle twenties. She had blonde hair, blue eyes and freckles. She wore a Picasso-styled hat and glasses, so she looked like a real literateur.
“Mr. Williams, I really love you and your story. The whole thing which is symbolized by it is fantastic. I understand the hidden meaning too. The white colour of the flower represents hope in hard days, but the fact the violet is dying suggests that something bad will happen. Your – I’m sorry, your character’s endurance to achieve his intention is absolutely amazing, and because of the obstacles, we – the readers – could guess that there will be a happy ending as would be deserved, but life does not work this way. You taught us that if there are many negative signs, then we don’t need to make another effort, because it’s not worth it, as the end will be negative for sure. In our hearts we have always known this, fairy tales helped us to change our minds about this issue, but now your story tells the truth. Thank you!”
Paul was left speechless and blinking big.
“I didn’t want to mean this with my story,” he thought. “What’s more, it doesn’t have a hidden meaning at all. I just wrote down what happened to me that day. A diary needs to contain that, doesn’t it?”
After that event, Paul published more excerpts from his diary. All of them were overthought by the readers, but it didn’t bother him, and he learned to handle these situations. Furthermore, he realised that he could share his feelings this way without the readers noticing. This meant safety for him to tell his true thoughts.