hours till dawn

The novel continues to grow. Hit the goal for today but it’s late, but there are still so many hours till light, and I feel invigorated, but also on the brink of collapse.

I think it’s worth examining my own writing at this point, though. I write in this stitched together fashion out of a weakness, but also out of a need for multiplicity, of authenticity. The problem with a singular viewpoint is that it’s always inherently so skewed. I need to have that cacophony of voices, and so I create a polyphonic symphony through dissonance. Each voice competing for truth and reality, each contradicting and undermining each other, and it’s this fission and fusion that creates an authentic reality for me.

And so everything I’ve written has had this multilayered quality to it, and that’s partly because of people like Virginia Woolf and Stephen Graham Jones and Terrence Malick and Steve Erickson. I need the voices fighting one another but also working together to create this beautiful tapestry.

I talk often about how writing for me is an act of translating the visual into language. The visions surge and rush and fill me or wash over me and I type as fast as I can to keep it all together, to capture as best I can what I’m seeing. And it’s when this happens that I know I’m doing it right. Sometimes it’s not so much a vision but a voice, singing and screaming in the darkness, and I’m transcribing that horrifyingly beautiful and haunting melody.

I can get 2,000 words in an hour, just dancing on keys when things click right. It’s when I struggle to get out a hundred words that I know I’m doing it wrong, that this isn’t working.

And so I’m 12k in. Chelsea and I watched a delightful film called Butter tonight. I enjoyed it a great deal. It’s not a great film and it’s narratively sort of shotty, but it also has some really great moments.

I think about sleep and I fear it. I overslept this morning, which put me behind schedule. I’m shooting for 5k a day, and so I’m 2k ahead right now, but I probably need to hit 20k tomorrow if this is going to be possible.

The weekend’s going to be sort of full, but I should be able to get another 20k then, which should put me at my goal. Hopefully the novel resolves itself around then.

12k is a long way, but it’s also barely a beginning. It’s hard to see the shape of this novel or where it’s headed. I see circles and spirals and a thousand kilometer tree, but I don’t know where this all leads. Eventually my little pale men are going to have a part to play in this and that’s probably what will make the whole novel.

I want to discuss the way we react to what we refer to as native. How it’s fetishised, in both positive and negative ways, which, of course, is sort of always negative. And I want the natives to speak out about what it means to be discovered to them.

So, yeah, this is my gender/race novel, and it’s carried by this noirish notion that I pretend is noir. Polyphonic feminist noir.

And then there’s the science fiction and fantasy always seeping in, but hopefully you dig it, and hopefully J David Osborne digs it, since it’s sort of for him and Broken River Books.

Don’t be afraid of turning the page or writing into darkness.

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