Monday, July 11, 2011

Part I:
The long, strange trip commences.

The story of how I came to write this book is a long one, but I'll try to keep it concise and interesting. It all began in the final days of the last century.

I had just had a very unsatisfying date with a guy who would--in the novel--become the Elliott character (loosely based, , of course). The guy was a co-worker of mine, and I'd liked him for a while. We'd been flirting for several months and I'd been dropping hints to let him know I was interested. When he finally picked up on it and asked me out I was elated. How did the date go? The first chapter should give you an idea.

Needless to say, I never went out with the guy again. I had to interact with him periodically at work, and it always made me supremely uncomfortable. Our single botched date had killed off any lingering attraction I had for him, and he seemed to feel the same way. Still, I was embarrassed and more than a little bitter at how it had all played out.

One evening I grabbed my journal and took to my bed to hash it all out on the page. I scribbled furiously for a few hours, then stopped. I went back and read what I had written, thought for a minute, then turned to a blank page and started over. This time, I began writing about the date in the present tense, as though it were happening now, in real time. I also began to alter the narration. I was using my own words, but I wasn't the one doing the talking. I was using a voice that belonged to me, yet wasn't mine. It was a character. I gave the character a name. Jordan. The guy she was on this disastrous date with wasn't the same guy I that I knew. It wasn't a real guy, it was a character. His name was Elliott, and together he and Jordan helped me write the first chapter of my book, right there in my journal in sky blue ink.

A few days passed. I went to work, I socialized, I did all the usual activities that filled my time when I was twenty-six years old. But I couldn't stop thinking about these two people I had just met, the ones who now resided in my journal--Elliott and Jordan.

Especially Jordan.

One day at work I had an idea. I rushed home, grabbed my journal, and sat down at my ancient desktop computer. I took out a floppy disk and typed out that story, the one I'd started in my journal. But when I finished transcribing the story, I didn't stop. I kept writing. I created a character. I created a life. I created a bigger story, one that started with Elliott and Jordan and went on from there, went on and on and on and on to something bigger, something that I hadn't foreseen. After a solid month of sitting down at my computer every night after work and typing furiously, I had a startling realization.

I was writing a novel.

Coming next time....
PART II: sex, drugs, and more sex. The saga continues.

1 comment:

Ms Sparrow said...

I love how you can take all the various threads of your life and weave them into a satisfying and complete whole. Well done!