This blog doesn’t function as per its initial or revised intent. Sorry about that. However it serves for now as an oppotunity, before google plus incorporates blogger and I shift to managing my online profile via the big G and the big G alone (nestling up to giant cyber bosoms seems to be the most comforting way to exist online) for me to do what seems to be now a big cathartic vent type thing (there is underlying catharsis in most of my blogs I suppose, but I’m far too stupid to learn lessons).
It’s 2am for me right now, and whilst I’ve shifted into a nocturnal creature due to being off work I sort of would prefer to be asleep and getting a stable day/night relationship reestablished than doing this. Nothing goods from writing emotive blogs, emails, letters late at night. There is a fallacy that I have often prescribed to in which the written word is somehow the cleaner, more clinical and considered method of communication. There is an immediacy concerning verbal conversation, there is a subtle nuance to tone of voice and body language which I’m not good with so I like to write. That is rendered bollocks by the fact that when the urge to say something somewhat cathartic comes about all I do with writing is confuse and convolute matters. I can’t utterly refute the notion that this might not be the fact that forms of communication have failings but rather the failings lie with me and how I interact with everyone in the world. In fact an exploration of that very notion is at the heart of the aim of this blog as I considered starting it.
I was going to write about writing. You may have noticed I say I’d like to write and get published as per the pipe dream I mention as a way to validate the current state of my existence and to use to ward off the mind crushing prospects of my current reality. I’ve been writing quite a bit with a view to sending to a publishing house these past while. It isn’t going so great, ideas don’t stick, my writing sucks and I mismanage timings and what not (a long time prioritising a novel idea that I subsequently rejected has robbed time I would’ve devoted to other ideas). Writing with an eye to publication is odd, there is a set of considerations about style, tone and content which need to be met with regards the prospect of a sale. I was going to write this blog about writing because I can’t get the tone right for the idea I’m on now. I like the idea allot, I desperately want it to work and pull it off, the plot whilst not revolutionary is solid and the characters are spot on but I want there to be a flavour to it which I’m not feeling in what I’m writing. I have lines of dialogue, turns of phrase in the narration that hit the right notes but a cohesive tune doesn’t exist just yet. So I was going to talk about that and what not but I got to thinking, which, whilst not unheard of, is always without fail dangerous for me to do.
When I was writing the Space Soap Opera “Bride of Kharn” earlier this year, after somehow lucking out and getting publisher interest from a submission I made (which alas went no further than a polite (yet unhelpfully vague) rejection), I realised that rather than being an aspiring writer, I was actually more akin to a pragmatic fantasist. (If we’re being honest (read hurtful) deluded, deluded person probably fits better than “pragmatic fantasist” but I’m trying to manage my portrayal to come out of this with face.)
What do I mean by this distinction? Well for one thing whilst I do read about writing and storytelling, most of that has happened after the resolve that I could maybe make a hash of selling and a lot of that happened after Bride of Kharn was sent off to the publisher and I was running high on the self-delusion it wasn’t terrible (if you are one with critical faculties this self-delusion the ability to psyche yourself up and belief in your creation is necessary as otherwise you will submit nothing to anyone at all). I am no student of the written word (outside of formal academia), what I am is someone who reads a fair amount of books and comics, watches far too much TV and probably spends an unhealthy amount of his alone time thinking and living scenes and stories in his head (some of which I write down somewhere just as a way to express them). If this was the matrix I’d not take any pill I’m happy to depart from reality of my own vocation without chemical assistance. Now I live with a creative process, an urge to have stories and characters and things in my head that are not real but I find enjoyable and for whatever strand of reasoning you wish to pin on me (depending on cynicism levels I can talk myself out of writing by undermining the reasons I have for doing it) I have done things with an eye to bending such a thing towards achieving the goal of publication. It’d be really trite and crap to say “it is my gift it is my curse” and suggest that I have a spidermanesque responsibility to turn my imagination into some sort of content for a wider audience to (hopefully) enjoy, but that is pretty much the best way to put it.
Which leads me to an interesting crux in this whole crazy thing. If writing (or indeed all art) is about the creator communicating an idea or emotion through their work to elicit a response in the audience and I mostly write/imagine to serve my own needs and desires surely there is a gap whereupon all my endeavours are doomed to fall through?
I don’t have an answer, I think “I’m communicating this to people” is always on my mind when I write with regards stuff I’m sharing. (Well not so much this rambling babbling nonsense but no one apart from you reads this blog anyway and to be honest I’d rather you stopped so I wouldn’t feel guilty about not updating.) Which is often why ideas get dismissed or I get frustrated and annoyed at my lack of abilities to achieve the objectives. I won’t say I have a talent with regards the writing, when I was fresh out of school maybe, teachers and the like said I had but talent suggests an inherent skill which I clearly am lacking in. I like making distinctions, mind numbingly petty distinctions, real pathetic “why are you being such an arse making such an arbitrary distinction” sort of shit. I’d say I have a set up in my mind that is well suited to the task of writing. I read allot, I write a bit and I think constantly and imagine all sorts. It is something I can do, but I need to work at it to do it well which is fair enough and the same boat as every other published author and hopeful scribbler the world over, I am nothing if not ique (as opposed to un-ique).
What worries me is that there is this gap. When I started this blog post I was alert to the fact that there was a very real possibility I could go into some sort of really confessional sort of place but I’ve been writing for an hour now and achieve over 1200 words so the pressure on my mind to make things up and vent them at the internet is released somewhat. This is great because I don’t want to be that guy. You know the guy who has an audience for his works and thus does a bit to cultivate a web presence and then decides to get married and seems to think this audience will put up with his thoughts and emotions about that. I love that guy, I’m part of his audience, he can post a link that leaves your computer stuck on goatse forever and his audience will think it rocks. It is all good despite the snide tone I took, I can’t be that guy if I wanted to, I have too much hair and not enough badassery.
However that aside aside, maybe there is something fundamentally wrong with me that will undermine all these efforts. I relate to people as an outsider primarily. I have socialised online over in reality since I was 14 years old and that is now a decade of keeping people at bay in reality. I don’t talk, I don’t emote to people. What I do do is cultivate the experience where I can reckon that cathartic writing of emotions in say an email may not help matters but other than that nothing really. I’ve found myself in the catch 22, where I don’t know what is best, I want to be there personally to help and comfort and offer intimacy and immediacy to someone who is upset but if I am there I’d want to be apart and communicating via a screen where I can consider what to say and bide for time and know I will be saying something likely better than I would make up instantly. That said that catch 22 only exists because I was emotionally invested in achieving a “cheer the person up and comfort them” result, where upon you could say I’d avoid such tripfalls if I stopped becoming emotionally invested in other people.
There is likely a running theme if you know me and/or read this blog that I am a mess. I accept that I am under no compulsion to fix that. I am reasonably content brooding in the dark and distracting myself with my own creations and I don’t think anyone wins if I was to draw from specific examples of my existence to explain how fucked up I am. When I started considering this blog and it took me to this point I got upset and obsessed about those events and my shortcomings and what not, I then distracted myself by writing this damned tirade of meaningless nonsense. That is certainly a degree of win. I’d summarise what I was trying to establish and communicate but I’m not sure what that is. In fact without a painful exploration of why I am why I am I don’t know how much of a way of explanation this is. Still I am aware of a disconnect, I wonder if it is fatal, I’ll publish this anyway because I know the audience for this is typically my friends (or acquaintances with which I am friendly as a more accurate distinction?) and there is surely a decent argument with regards the disconnect with the world that I probably not as friendly and open with them as friends possibly should be. I don’t know, I only really am comfortable talking about stuff that never matters and most of you as my friends I met online where the use of the written word and the mediums on which our friendships take place (often forums) mean I can try to cultivate a wittier, more worthy of friendship persona than I likely have in reality or am expressing here. Perhaps this will lead for me to be terribly alone and abandoned by everyone?
Part of me kind of hopes it does to be honest. If I’m going to have friends longterm I probably should do better than you, you are already getting a bit annoying.