I'm not referring to an unwashed reference with a race-segregating remark, although I am intrigued by the origin of this title. This of course will be part of my interview with the author Clayton Littlewood.
I met Clayton through a networking site during my days in recruitment. I joined the Hospital Club website in order to source talent that may not be available on the over-exposed and candidate-unfriendly CV engines. It is a haven for talented individuals in media and entertainment and is still humble enough to accept emails from someone eager to learn.I was searching through the updated blogs and latest news from the members and came across a rather poignant but funny posting by a chap called Clayton Littlewood. He was releasing a book on his time in Soho as an owner of a shop by the same title of the book. His writing captured me, as if transporting me to his seat in the café and letting me relive his moments. I was captured but I had work to carry on with and didn't think anything more of it – unfortunately, until recently. Part of my research process is to find ways of immersing myself into the different sides of Soho. I socialise, dine and party in Soho so this aspect I know fairly well – although not an expert I hasten to add – yet! I rediscovered Dirty White Boy as an insight into the harsh daily reality to my beloved Soho. Not always a place of realised dreams where dreams don't consist of finding your true love, play-mate or dancing your troubles away. Instead Clayton has the audacity to remove my cherished blinkers and show me that passed the wave of party-goers is this incredibly dangerous and saddening fight for survival of gangs, prostitutes and the homeless.The writing was at first just good because it emphasised on the shallow world of the overly sexual and camp side of Soho, but as this book progresses he quickly submerges you below the embarrassing and forces you to wake up to the reality of what Soho is like. It forces you in the same way he was forced. It's this empathy which shows you the subtlety of his talent for writing. His ability to capture detail with emotion and tell his story in such a way that you're not only feeling how he feels but you start to build up your own imagination of how Soho is now to yourself. His writing is beautifully honest and told with humility. If the description of a good actor is being able to personify humility, then surely a good personal blogger must have that same principle. He's only representing himself in his accounts of Soho and thank god it was him. His sometimes child-like and innocent reactions to everyday life is balanced by his mature observations that reflect his experience, wisdom and his new found street-smarts. I have to add at this point that Clayton is in his forties but during this book you forget his age as you discover, with him, the reality to a world that most gay men experiencing Soho do not see. Amidst his truthful and honest accounts of the crime, prostitution and homelessness in Soho's street, he helps uncover a beautiful love story that brought my to tears by the end of the book. My only problem now is I want more. An inclusion into my project perhaps? Who knows. All I can say is that you have to read this book. Whilst it has been incredibly value to my research it has also been an excellent book to read and I'd happily recommend it to anyone. Thank god for Amazon: http://tr.im/dwbsohoAn excellent example of someone who thinks with his heart and writes with his mind. Stay tuned for an interview with the man himself – if he agrees! Hahaha.