An interview with Alan Beardsley

What did you learn when writing the book?

What didn’t I learn about WW2? Having studied WW2 for many years, it was fascinating to read a real-life account of the information being received at that time, and then reading reports after the event, allowing a full perspective. Noting that this diary was a collection of thoughts and “news” of the War, Mike Rogers’ global understanding is super impressive. 

What surprised you the most?

The most surprising aspect of Mike Rogers’ diary was the ability to transcend from the abnormal to normal. It was very interesting to review the daily activities where people were subjected to raids, bombings, and then he and the family – just carried on. The ability to compartmentalise aspects of his life through his diary is amazing. I don’t want to give away too many details, but the focus and determination to maintain the full War Diary, was and is outstanding.

What does the title mean? 

“War Diary”. I think it’s pretty self-explanatory. The beauty of the book is that it starts at the brink of WW2, and ends on (or just after) Victory-over-Japan day. 

It’s useful to note that Mike Rogers wrote “please excuse the somewhat goofy way in which this first volume of the War Diary is written or worded.” – but, consistently remembers the book is a War Diary, recording events of the War, glaringly omitting others, and is always acutely aware of the strange times. It’s always amazing to think that these are thoughts of a 13-year-old boy during a pretty difficult period.

What are the subject(s) doing now? Or, for certain types of books (such as history titles), “What ended up happening?”

Haha, you’ll have to find out. Mike Rogers led a very interesting life after the War. 

WAR DIARY: The Diary of Mike Rogers available to purchase in May 2021!

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