Sunday, July 06, 2008

Provincetown 29


Gretchen asked about process.

Because this novel is based on a real life experience (boating the Ohio River in 2005), it has presented its own challenges, particularly that of moving away from the actual experience and toward a narrative that has some force. I had to separate myself from the character on the boat and my husband from the other character on the boat. I kept wanting to hang on to aspects of us that didn't fit the new narrative. That has been a part of the process, then, letting go.

Another part has been to balance out how I want/know the book will end with the need to maintain sufficient curiosity about the characters and situation so that I don't lose interest. The only way I've found to do that in this case is to move inexorably toward the ineffable.

So I've had to comb through the narrative again and again, making changes that would accomplish the previous tasks.

I don't know if this answers Gretchen's question.

I'm going back to the apartment now to print out a new copy of the manuscript and think about where to go next.

1 comment:

ggw07 said...

"to move inexorably toward the ineffable."
That certainly sums it up nicely.
Thanks so much for your response.
Continued good luck in this great venture!

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Northwest Ohio, United States
"I was no better than dust, yet you cannot replace me. . . Take the soft dust in your hand--does it stir: does it sing? Has it lips and a heart? Does it open its eyes to the sun? Does it run, does it dream, does it burn with a secret, or tremble In terror of death? Or ache with tremendous decisions?. . ." --Conrad Aiken


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Fave Painting: Eden

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Fave Painting: The Three Ages of Man and Death

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by Albrecht Dürer

From the First Chapter

The Secret of Hurricanes : That article in the Waterville Scout said it was Shake- spearean, all that fatalism that guides the Kennedys' lives. The likelihood of untimely death. Recently, another one died in his prime, John-John in an airplane. Not long before that, Bobby's boy. While playing football at high speeds on snow skis. Those Kennedys take some crazy chances. I prefer my own easy ways. Which isn't to say my life hasn't been Shake-spearean. By the time I was sixteen, my life was like the darkened stage at the end of Hamlet or Macbeth. All littered with corpses and treachery.

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Looking Forward, Looking Back

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