rlbourges

Pulse? Hello? A faint ticking? Lazarus, is that you?

In Revision on October 20, 2014 at 6:12 am

I don’t know how much longer I’ll go on tinkering with this one. At this point, the revision has turned into a sigh-inducing  piece of homework – a bit as if I’d pulled apart and laid out a number of fine (i.e. tiny) pieces of an automat. The cat had walked through the layout on a few occasions, chased by the dog. A visitor had then pushed a few things aside with his foot (so as not to crush them). I find a preposition in need of changing, here and there. I change word order in a sentence. I tinker with bits that fit together, then, I set it aside again. Whatever grand vision I had in mind when the thing sang and danced in my head: uh… Vision? Dance? Sing?

Someone coming over this morning to spackle the walls in the bathroom. Someone else coming over (perhaps, maybe, who knows) for a bit of coaching before an exam. Someone possibly showing up to help about the Lost Photos of 2014. Coaching this afternoon. Stuff, everywhere, including admin homework.

Voilà.

But a twelve or thirteen-year old boy entrusting me with the six first chapters of his novel gets my attention. A little girl or a grownup wanting to write her own stories grabs my attention too. The revision: somewhere, somewhere, something about the story will have to fight its way through to the forefront, because live people are holding a lot more interest and occupying a lot more space in my life right now than this stalled attempt at saying… at saying what?

Something that mattered, and still does. But Jezus, getting to the living core of a piece of writing doesn’t happen when something turns into homework. Come on, story, you want to live, you’ve got to help me.

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