China: Around The Nation

Chinese pensioner hoards 7 rooms full of newspapers at home

Papers date back 30 years and hobby started to gain inspiration to write plays, news website reports

PUBLISHED : Monday, 02 January, 2017, 12:31pm
UPDATED : Monday, 02 January, 2017, 12:31pm

An elderly man in southern China has filled seven rooms full of old newspapers dating back more than 30 years because of his passion for writing, Chinese media reported.

Qi Jilin, 74, from Yongfu county in the Guangxi region, has been hoarding newspapers since 1985, the news website reported.

His collection also includes magazines and books and is stored in his living room, bedroom and even the kitchen.

Qin developed a love for writing when he worked as a primary school teacher in Yongfu county back in the 1960s.

He was later transferred to the county’s art troupe to write plays because of the strength of his writing, but found playwriting difficult.

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To deal with this problem, Qin began studying well formed sentences in newspapers and applied them in his plays.

Qin’s playwriting technique quickly improved and his play Tofu Boy won first prize in a competition in Guangxi and third prize in a mainland contest in 1985, the year he began hoarding newspapers systematically.

Qin especially loves to hoard newspapers which have a special meaning for him.

He bought 200 copies of the first newspaper in his county in July 2001.

Originally priced at one yuan (HK$1.1) they can now fetch 100 yuan.

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Qin also loves to hoard newspapers which reported on China’s major historical events, including the election of national leaders.

Now retired, Qin has a monthly retirement allowance of 3,600 yuan, but says it is a struggle to buy all the newspapers and magazines he wants.

“Hoarding is a habit, I cannot give it up.” he said.