The feeling of failure, the will to quit, that shit doesn’t come from the act of writing.
The will to quit comes from the lack of basic need, food, shelter, rest…comes from the social need of “success” that is measured by the number of sales.
But none of that takes into account the notion of a successful writing session. My writing process comes in very intense outbursts of frantic writing. They come as single hours of insane typing where the entirety of the world doesn’t exist anymore. My favorite moments happen when I can’t even keep up with the words in my head. My hands can’t type fast enough, sometimes I even beat Word to it’s speed. The letters appear half a second after I typed them and a full second after they came up in my mind.
The best moments happen when I go blind on the screen and the words just come out. It’s an absolute mess to clean up but I did learn to maximize those creative outbursts in time. Making sense of the emotion, you can do that later when you mind is no longer on fire.
It’s very hard to fall into that one moment of absolute genius or madness. I think music and art is a better place for that mind frame than writing but it’s not impossible. If happens, every now and then, I manage to fall into that insane grove that only people like Trent Reznor seem to find all the time and the words come out. Weird shit comes out, very good shit comes out.
The problem with it is that more often than not, it can’t stand on its own. It’s just a piece of something that could be and nothing more. It’s a few pages at a time. I can go insane, frantic even, and shell out 1200 words in twenty minutes, that has happened. But those words won’t make any sense to anyone, maybe not even myself.
Because the mind frame I was in when I was writing so frantically only existed in that very singular moment. They can only be a collection of momentary lapses of reason.
I mean. You play a riff or you play an entire song… it may last 3 minutes. If you’re Neurosis, it will last 8 or 10 or maybe more, sometimes. That song has a few parts, 3, sometimes 4, rarely 5 or more. They repeat themselves and add on to each other and I love music. Music is absolutely necessary to the “emotion” of writing. But the writing itself doesn’t really work as répétitions of 3 or 4 or maybe 5 parts…
An album is twelve songs, an art expo is a handful of artworks and each and every one of them is perfectly valid, but a novel is a marathon, not sprint.
A novel means locking down all the feelings, the need to rest and the will to stop. A novel means writing when your body is ready to quit. It means to keep going, one line at a time, the way you count your meters at the end of a long race you’re just fucking done with.
It’s not about losing your mind onstage and feeling the single riff through your fingers like the world depended on it. Writing is a slow game and it’s strange to think of it that way, but it’s true.
It’s very, very hard to make something out of a hundred little moments of madness. Poetry works like that, songs work like that. You can put all the insanity of the universe in a few short pages, sometimes a few short words. I still think some of my best work comes in those short bursts, but the need to write novels is still there.
So you take those moments of absolute genius and you make a story out of it. I mean, A novel is 70 000 words, 80 000 words, 90 000 words. It’s ridiculous to write a novel, what an insane enterprise. Why do that at all?
I just need to do it. After all this time, the need is still there. I fucking hate it sometimes, but it’s still there.
And of course you could say “you just need to add up all those moments of pure genius/insanity. JUST those moment,” and that would make a standalone novel or story or anything else. That would be a beautiful thing and I think I’ll get there one day. I hope I make it there one day. It’s the kind of thing that can keep me up at night. CAN I WRITE A BOOK LIKE THAT?
So far I only think Burroughs has managed to do it with Naked Lunch and he probably lost his mind right there and then.
It’s getting harder for me not to go there though. I’ll admit to that. This kind of FRANTIC writing is kind of calling me. It’s a bit obsessive when I think about it. The simple act of writing is not enough anymore. I’ve filled pages and novels and it’s all fun and good, but the need to create something more than myself is still there.
I was good at hard realism and I’m still good at hard realism. But I still have this need to break all the rules again. I haven’t done that in so long, I think I’m ready for it.
I don’t know if it’ll be successful. I don’t really know at all.
Feels like this one’s out of my hands for once.
“We’ll see in a year,” I keep telling myself. “We’ll see in a year.”
COMPS – Art/Happening
This Saturday, March 26th @ Espace Cercle Carré
36 Rue Queen, MTL
My next art event will be COMPS, On March 26th, 2016 @ 19.00h – Espace Cercle Carré in Montreal’s old Port – 36 rue Queen, Mtl.
COMPS is an Art Happening put together by Montreal Artists as a way to emerge from the dead of winter. From Modern art to graffiti and design and set in an amazing Old Port cooperative space, Expace Cercle Carré, COMPS will offer you, for one night only, a glimpse into the depth of talent these artists can deliver.
COMPS est une soirée d’art mise sur pieds par un groupe d’artistes Montéalais pour sortir de la torpeur hivernale. Réunissant art moderne au grafitti et au design dans un espace coopératif absolument magnifique du vieux-port de Montréal, l’Espace Cercle Carré, COMPS vous offre, pour un soir seulement, un simple souffle du talent immense que ces artistes ont à offrir.
I turned a painting into a work table for the job using a bunch of old legs, tampered glass shelves we had laying around and some silicone. I bought the canvas that fit with the glasses we had and used the wooden frame as support for the legs. The glue smeared on the edges, so that’s a technique I’ll have to improve, but as a prototype, I’m pretty happy about it,
I rarely blog about things I’d like to get (I mean, material things) but it’s the new years,I took time to look at what I got this year and it’s pretty good (True Detective, Stray Dogs, Summer Wars, Helix, Dark Angel, Ergo Proxy)
so here’s what I hope to add to my collection in 2015 :
Evangelion 2.22 and 3.33
Aeon Flux (the original anime)
Complete my Battlestar Gallactica collection
Spin City Season 4
Maybe I’ll afford myself 2 or 3 “random” criterion collection movies this year.
Also REALLY looking forward to NewsRoom season 3.
More of the following : Murakami, Bukowski, Brian Wood… I discovered John McFetridge this year, probably will get more of his work too.
Rarer items :
Maybe a rare print from Becky Cloonan
A painting by Jacob Bannon
“White Trash” By Chris Makos
Some old Bjork, Supermachiner, Bossk, Mogwai, lots of ambient, less heavy (or heavier in a more creative way) kind of music, if you know bands like that, send them my way…
that’s pretty much it.
So we opened my first solo show last week at a Vernissage on the 14th.
Here are some pictures. (I think all of those were taken by Mary Lee Maynard…pretty sure)…you can get the complete catalogue of paintings in my “visual art” section HERE.
Finished up the last two canvases for my first solo show : Non-Mechanical Errors on 14/08 @Vap Box Montréal. 4812 St-Urbain, Montreal. 18h00