Friday, September 16, 2005 The Next One
So after you do anything poignant, people wonder about the next one. They want to examine the nature of the creator. Are you a consistent performer. Are you a dynamo? Are you a one trick pony? Or did you just have an itch that yearned for some scratchin'?
I finished my first novel about a year ago. Then, about 4 months later I began (and quickly abandoned due to a baby and work and school) a search for a literary agency. I told myself I would pick it up again when I had more time. Now, I seem to have less than ever.
So sooner or later I have to put it back out there, this book that took to long to write and might very well be shit when the final yays and nays are tallied. But I have to give it another go. And at the same time I have to do it again. I have to write "the next one".
It is not so much that I think I am full of interesting stories or characters that have much to say or even universal themes that arc from the page into the readers mind. It is just that I have to have a next one. I have to because the question will come eventually "What are you working on now?" and I cannot think of a worse answer to give than "NOTHING, NOT A DAMN THING!"
So it is back to the drawing board. Only this time the drawing board is really blank because I used up all what I was pretending was talent on the last one. I have this immediate and insurmountable and intimidating blank slate and my expectation is I will fill it up in less time and with a better story than the last time out. Even if nobody likes it. Even if nobody reads it. Even if I cannot find a soul to represent it. I just have to do it. If for no other reason than when that question comes I can casually say "Me? Oh, I am working on the next one." I can say it and somehow they will know exactly what I am trying to say.
I don't know how long it will take or what the hell it will be about but you can bet your ass it will involve Tokyo somehow. I leave for a week long conference on Oct 6th and will have about 28 hours of air travel to think about how to fill up that big empty.posted by Mike | 9:17 PM
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