Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Breathing room...

Tonight was spent reading a book -- The Blood of Others. It's interesting how it changes tense constantly through the first chapter, like a memory. Hard to follow until you catch the flow and then it's like contemplation. Chapter 2 is more straightforward narrative.

I wonder if I'm missing subtleties in the translation from the French. I really should work on it; I love the language, love the films, love the idea of France, but my knowledge of her grammar was never strong and is weakening, rapidly. Hell, I can barely comprehend English, sometimes.

Anyway, this book reminds me a bit of the Benjy section of The Sound and the Fury, by Faulkner. That book's told in 4 parts, and Benjy's is the opener, as revealed in the mind of an adult man who either has Down Syndrome or is severely retarded. Very stream of consciousness. It's the only one of his books that I've read that I really liked.

I think The Blood of Others might have been influenced by Faulker and James Joyce (Ulysses is a bitch on wheels to follow as you read it). It deals with a man named Jean Blomart who's sitting vigil as Helene, a woman he thinks he loves...or may not love, is dying. He remembers moments from his past that led him to the point where he is now a leader in the French Resistance of WW2...and who probably sent her on the operation that got her mortally wounded. An existentialist tragedy.

The closest I've come to writing anything like this is Death Target, a revenge screenplay where the lead wants to be killed in order to destroy the man he thinks murdered his family. It's set in Marseille and Casablanca (originally it was set in LA and Moscow and called Kazn) and is told like a thriller, but it has a hopeful ending. I'm pretty sure this book does not.

No...How To Rape A Straight Guy is pretty rough and harsh, too. Probably more-so. What Curt does in that is violent and understandable and probably mostly a lie that could be the truth...but even it ends on a gentle note.

I've never written anything that has a bleak fade out. I like there to always be at least a glimmer of hope at the end. I think that's a very American thing. We like to believe that anything is possible, even if it's just mending a marriage or changing jobs or surviving the evening.

I'd like to think we still do...

No comments: