Still Freaking on Bowie – the teenage diaries of Nic Dalton

I’ve made the first week free but please subscribe to my Patreon page to see it all. Every Monday you’ll get around another ten pages of my teenage diaries plus some other stories (to fill in the blanks) and photos or anything else related to the diaries. I’ve made it as cheap as possible: $3.50 per month (that’s $2 in US dollars) so that works out to be about 88 cents per week!


I kept a diary from 1977, when I was twelve and just starting high school, until 1981 when I was seventeen and in 5th Form (what they call Year 11 these days). There were six small notebooks in all. My musings start out mentioning favourite bands and songs and noting the birth dates and deaths of famous people, but it doesn’t take long until I start going on about my relationship with friends and girlfriends in Canberra and at a co-ed boarding school in Bathurst. There are quite a few months missing – most of 1979 – and I reckon it’s because I was having too much fun. Luckily, I pick it up again near the end of 3rd Form when I was expelled for smoking pot on the weekend!

I was always going to burn these dairies as I was completely embarrassed about my teenage rambles and came very close to it when I was in my early twenties. I was only a handful of years away from that young, hyperactive and over-confident kid and knew I would be laughed out of town if anyone read them. I stood over the brick incinerator in my parent’s backyard with the bundle: will I? won’t I? I put them back in the Homecrafts bag and stashed them away.

 Then one night in 2016, when a mutual friend of my wife and I came over for dinner, I pulled them out of a storage box and started reading from them. Tandarra and Hildy were laughing their brains out. They were loving it! The passage of time is a funny thing. I am so far removed from that kid that I felt no embarrassment at all. That same night I scanned in a few pages and put them up on my Facebook page.

There were lots of comments – especially from the friends from forty-plus years ago – and quite a few saying: you should publish these. And thanks to the internet and a scanner…here we go.


Nic x