Being Fictionalised

In his maybe questionable wisdom, Matt Finch has chosen to turn an interview with me about life, the universe, and remixing 19th century literature into a miniature epic featuring actual details about the origins of my name, silver spoons and the climate of the current (and at this point still unresolved) Australian election. 

Matt is the Creative in Residence at the State Library of Queensland (even though "creative" is not a noun) and a project worker at British Library Labs.

Read his story, For the Term of His Natural Life here.


“Groth. I don’t think I’ve ever heard that surname before.”

“It’s Prussian.”

“Right. Cool.”

“Matthew Finch is a bit generic Anglo.”

“Yeah, there are a few of us scattered around. Sometimes we get each other’s email when someone makes a typo. And I’m always being mistaken for someone else. I’ve got one of those faces as well as one of those names.”

“You ever Google yourself? My brother and I have a podcast. We were looking for names and found a Groth Brothers Chevrolet dealership in California. It thrived for three generations, then the last ones ran it into the ground. But my brother and I stole their name for our podcast: it's called The Fireproof Garage." 

I laugh.

"There was a Simon Groth in nineteenth century Copenhagen. I found him online too. He was an assayer of silver. But you mostly find his mark on cutlery, nothing else. I bought one of his spoons. Anyway…”

I’m just making small talk; Simon Groth really wants to show me this thing he’s invented. He works at Australia’s Institute for the Future of the Book. They resurrect classic Aussie authors on social media. They make hard copies of shared documents with tracked changes. But Simon tells me his new project is in another league entirely.


Read on.