Sunday, 9 November 2008

Beginnings: A Retrospective, A Hope and a Packed Disco Kettle

With the book out in but two months (oh yes, I will assume your copy is already preordered) and with my foray into the world of the MA, plus with a beginning at home - The Best Possible Thing, I think, I've been tempted more and more to think of this as Year One. 

When the book comes out in January I will have finally realised a long held ambition. Possibly the only ambition I have maintained, or that has remained, since I started school. I will be a published author. People will read my book. And I have been thinking about how chuffed that knitted jumpered little boy would be feeling.

Of course, the fact that my first Official MA Assignment is a Personal Reflection based largely on why I started writing may go some way to explaining my current introversion. So, anyway, I've decided to share a little bit of it. Not a lot, just a bit. And it's got a reference and everything...

"At some point, some distant, out of focus day, the whole thing seemed to slip away from me. Somewhere down the line, at some setting hour, the game became too important. I remember staring at bruised, dark, swollen clouds and being somewhere else.

I remember I started to make notes.

I remember making sure that I would not forget the game.

The name was never important. The characters were never really important. In the games we played our protagonists were all much the same. I was I was I was I. Strangely I was always injured. Strangely I was always captive.

At some point, some rainy, lonely afternoon, the whole thing seemed to slip away from me. I started making notes. I did not show those notes. I hid them from friends. I folded them into a space between my wardrobe and the wall. These notes were private games.

I remember I was playing games, my friends played Games. Rules. Systems. Tactic. Strategies. I kept making notes. Sometimes the notes were in sentences. Sometimes the sentences were connected together. And somewhere down the line, in some loud and crowded classroom, the game became more important.

We can never give anything up.” Said Freud, and I think that perhaps he had a point. “We only exchange one thing for another… [when a child] stops playing he gives up nothing but the link with real objects, instead of playing, he now phantasises.”

I remember the toys becoming much less important. I remember them becoming unnecessary. I remember phantasies. I remember one sentence following another. I remember crossing the boundaries of that first page. I remember the fresh page, the sparkling white, the faded blue lines, and me starting it part way through an idea. Those pages flowed.

At age ten: eight pages is a mammoth task. At age ten: eight pages is an achievement unmatched throughout history. At age ten: eight pages is a release of something powerful. At age ten, at some point, someone will tell you to stop.

The content is unimportant, a story based on bluetac is an achievement I will only manage once and I wish I’d been able to keep a hold of the book. What is important is that I did not stop. What is important is that I wrote a game about a hedgehog. A game about a scientist. A game about a rock named George."

Proper mint no? Thank you for allowing me my self indulgence...

Plus: Disco Kettle is all packed.

I move into my new place at the end of the month. Got a bed ordered and everything. DK is muchos excited, he's even volunteered to do a photo shoot once he's in the new place. He's been posing  and Fffssssttting for the last few day practicing. He's even been working on harmonising his Bing with the microwave. It's all very sweet.


B said...

I got all emotional for ten-year-old-Nik reading this. I'm really impressed that you've done it. And I'm reallyreally jealous of Cas. She's read it already!

I dare you to write another blutack story, though ;o)

Vix said...

Ill even give you an idea for the blutack story...
For a very short time, for a limited run... they made Pinktack. Imagine the possibilities! The arrival of small purpletacks!
I imagine Im a pink toothbrush you're a bloo toothbrush playing in the background...

Megan said...

What a lovely remembering, and so beautifully described - may the games never end!!
And a big hurray for all the other good things too

Braja said...

Well I'm a first time visitor but to read that you're about to be a published author made me so happy; it's my goal also and i'm glad people are doing it all around me, it gives me hope! I found you thru black box, I love that goddamned thing :) Come over, you'll be fine...I'll be nice :)

watching9987 said...

B, Vix - another bluetac/pinktac/purpletac story eh? I dunno, could be a bit risky. the last one was over eight pages long. I nearly died from the strain... Oh, and Vix, playing about as toothbrushes eh? Could I be a renegade Dentist condemned toothbrush?

Megan - thank you muchly, always nice to have to stop by, and yes - the games must always go on :)

Braja - Hello, thanks be to the BLack Box Widget. It is mint like, and yes, I'll stop by soon and say clever and witty things. Honest

DJ Kirkby said...

I thought this post was really beautifully written. But my being impressed by your writing was then completly overshadowed by my excitment at reading the promise of a photo shoot for DK.