Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Bedlam Is Dreaming of Rain

This past weekend, I wrote the polyphonic story, and off it goes to workshop today. Eh. I kind of hate it, a little, though I like parts of it very much; I have no idea what my classmates are going to make of it; and I'm glad as hell that it's off my mind. That is, I'm glad it's outside my head, because the idea has been teasing me for months, and I'm equally glad my major assignment for that class is officially handed in.

If I weren't restrained by deadlines, I might have tried to do something a lot more difficult with this story: create a narrative solely through [pages and pages of] disconnected sentences that represent the thoughts of a half-dozen or so characters. Instead I did a little of that in between three longer fragments (less than 1K apiece), and ran out of time/patience/other intangibles to go deeper and further with a truly shattered narrative. If I don't run out of time again, this true polyphony may be how I revise the story before the end of the semester. Dunno. Depends.

This morning on my run I listened to Lydia Davis read a story of her father's on the New Yorker fiction podcast. I continue to learn all kinds of useful what-I-am-definitely-not-as-writer-and-reader from listening to this podcast, and today was no exception. But the combination of Lydia Davis and the above paragraph makes me think I should read some of her work and try again on the true polyphony. She knows a shattered narrative better than anyone I can think of.

Spring break is next week, but two of three professors have piled on the work, so I think I may actually be busier than if I had to go to class. Two long books, a presentation, a lot of studying. I'd hoped to get started on the scary story, which will be very hard to write (hence the name), but it may not come to pass.

That's all I have today. I'm looking forward to catching up with my life in late May. In the meantime, this is in my head, even though fire season is at the opposite end of the year.

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