Monday, May 20, 2002
Another day, another pile of words. The nothing in my head resolving reluctantly into a jumble of nouns and verbs and adjectives, resolving again into the artifice of sentences. The day-to-day rape of thought for the sake of structure and the impossibility of conveying the fluid by means of an inherently partitioned medium. A hand turning a doorknob, the realization that light has become darkness, the bowing of a head, each perfect in its fluidity, rendered imperfect and forever debatable by mere language.
Be that as it may (and it certainly may), I managed 1,126 wds. on Chapter Seven of Low Red Moon today. Who needs weekends anyway?
Also, I began my Lovecraftian Holmes story, titled simply "The Drowned Geologist," which I will try to write without neglecting the novel. Also, I read parts of Emma Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz' The Grail Legend, along with Conan Doyle's "The Adventure of the Empty House."
The weather turned slightly warmer. I think we made 65F, but things will remain unseasonably cool for several more days. At least it's green outside.
Here's a fine quote from James Thurber that I ran across this past week — "When all things are equal, translucence in writing is more effective than transparency, just as glow is more revealing than glare." Undoubtedly, one of the most annoying and injurious maxims in the contemporary writer's bag of "accepted wisdom" is the oft parroted observation that "good writing is a pane of glass." Which is to say it is invisible, betraying no suggestion that any writer's hand played a role in its creation. That last night in Chicago, back in March, I saw it written on a pillar at After Words bookshop downtown, and pointed it out to Jennifer and Neil. "No," I said. "Good writing should be a pane of stained glass." But Mr. Thurber said it better than I, and so I defer.