The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible - Vladimir Nabokov

There is no agony like bearing an untold story inside you - Zora Neale Hurston

24 August 2009

True Blood

This post is way off topic, but I'm currently obsessed with HBO's True Blood and must talk about it somewhere. I fell in love with the show upon first watching, read the books in between seasons and came to adore Eric, so when they started building the Eric/Sookie/Bill triangle this year, I got embarrassingly excited. "I Will Rise Up" and "New World in My View" have me itching to write about it. Can I just say, Eric dream scenes = good.

There's the whole debate among fans (and this question is prominent in the books as well) as to whether Sookie's feelings for Eric are false, because they originated after drinking his blood. I must weigh in, saying, first of all, there were some good sparks before the whole bullet sucking scene, and finally--it doesn't matter. As Eric said, 'It's done'. No closing Pandora's box, no going back; the feelings are there irrelevant of where they originated.

I think this is a good point to make when talking about character motivations. Sometimes, things just are, and it has nothing to do with how someone was treated by their mother, a need for attention or whatever. Shit happens. Chaos, random chance, whatever, is a huge factor in the world and is commonly overlooked in our need for meaning. Life is static without change, mutation...and moments of unintelligible upheaval can provide powerful moments in drama: the car crash, the freak storm, the terrorist attack...These chaotic elements mould our characters and make them more interesting, as long as we don't over-analyse and take away their power. These moments show us another aspect of reality: the scary, uncontrollable one. And truly seeing reality through fiction = good.

I have digressed from my digression, so I want to end with one last huff about True Blood. For all those 'it's only the blood talking!' anti-Eric naysayers, ponder this: Sookie's attraction to Bill was influenced by drinking his blood (though there was some sparks even before that); ditto with Eric; more importantly, if the TV series follows the books, Sookie is a faerie and her very presence, let alone her blood, is an aphrodesiac to vampires. She is 'artificially' influencing them as much as they are her! (I put 'artificially' in quotes because it's not: it's only one aspect of her physical charm, same as being a vampire is for the men)

Thus, my conclusion is that Sookie, Eric and Bill are all on a level playing field; they're all using supernatural lures, which cancels that factor out. The chaotic bit is irrelevant, and, in the end, it will come down to each of the characters' choices. Fooled you, huh? We do have free will.

20 August 2009


Winter is losing its grasp on Oz. I slept with the window open last night, ah fresh air! It also feels like I'm coming out of hibernation, recovering from writing my first book, related synopses, query letters etc. It has been anything but a restful sleep, however. I've been reading books on the first five pages (and other topics) to get some ideas for trapping one of those snarly, Tasmanian devil-like agents. All that stuff is percolating in my subconscious along with a chapter 1 rewrite, notes jumping out onto the page of their own accord from time to time.

In order to let my subconscious do its work, I've plowed ahead with my second book and I'm now 70 pages in. Almost 1/3 of the way through the first draft, wow. Sometimes I think it's writing itself. It's very different from my first book, which was supernatural suspense. This one's fantasy detective, with a man-hating/man-loving heroine, and I'm reveling in the snappy dialogue, fast pace and custom built world. There's elves and dwarfs and a few other recognisable species--to make it fun--but all with my own twist. I even have some scenes in mind for another, very different, epic fantasy to follow this one.

I've read that, on average, it is an author's 5th or 6th book that finally gets published. I'm not just going to spew out crap to meet that quota, though--I want everything I write to be the best it can be. It's the only way to learn. Nose going back to the grindstone now...