Monday, February 05, 2007

cormac mccarthy and revelations and rambling

His book The Road is in my pile waiting to be read, and I think it might be next up after Naipaul. I was thinking about McCarthy's earlier novel Blood Meridian last night and searched out a quote that I wrote down in one of my black moleskines from a couple of years ago:

The judge smiled.
Books lie, he said.
God don't lie.
No, said the judge. He does not. And these are his words.
He held up a chunk of rock.
He speaks in stones and trees, the bones of things.

I totally admire his brevity, the spareness of words, the stark images.

Looking for this particular quote, I ended up re-reading numerous passages and thinking of west Texas, where the landscape is bleak and desolate.

I got into my bath last night with images from McCarthy swirling with images from my own travel in Texas while I lived there for graduate school.

This led to thoughts of the road trip that ensues in my second novel. And suddenly I had a revelation about a character and a missing but pivotal piece of action.

Sometimes my bathtub revelations get lost in the jet streams, so I filed this one boldly in my mind.

The instant I let it go I had another one about the third novel - a rather huge one - having to do with replacing a major character with a character from an old short story - which would make this entire piece of the novel come to life. And in the process, solve several problems having to do with the motives of the main character.

Sometimes my bathtub revelations are pretty far out - and while this one is, it survived scrutiny after the fact and I plan to implement it as soon as I get back to that book.

Both revelations have been neatly written into the current moleskine.

(I used to keep the moleskines devoted to one book in progress - but at some point that became too complicated - now I just write everything down in the current one, and label the top of the page with the name of the novel it belongs to!)

And, finally, I have stirred from first novel rewrite query torpor and have begun to send them out in earnest. I shot out some email queries Friday and got one pretty quick no thank you - good to get that little milestone over and done with. May the requests for partials and fulls begin. :)

No comments: