Experimental Writing, Making Images and More


It's All an Experiment

It’s all an experiment

I’m keeping a journal about the journey of editing my book. I wrote 50,000 words in a writing challenge last November, NanoWrimo. I wanted to explore a character who came alive for me in a dream in 2006.
She had a very distinct voice from the beginning. And now, she’s a many dimensional young woman. Working with a writing coach, I’ve re-written 2 chapters. I didn’t really write chapters, I just called them such as I wrote every day. Every day, another chapter.

And now, after the second chapter. My coach reminded me the usual format in which one submits a piece of work to a publisher. There are a fair amount of rules/devices that can be employed when writing. I am self taught so learning the craft of writing is important.
I am finding though, that even making small (seemingly) changes here and there, I’ve already caused a stir in the writing, in her voice? in where the story is headed.
Tension on every page. I think, I don’t care too much for confrontation in my own life. I prefer things smooth. Maybe its denial or maybe I’ve learned how to “pick my battles” or maybe it’s something more.
Being right, getting my way, standing up for myself;
all these have very different meanings and level of importance at this point in my life.

I’ve been wondering about experimental writing. What was considered experimental even as recent as 20 years ago, isn’t what’s happening now. And I would prefer not to alienate the reader. And at the same time, being true to Katya’s voice/circumstances/experiences/time/frame of reference.
References of time. Multi-dimensionality.
So, what is experimental now? Not wanting to indent my paragraphs (Mary, you rebel).
Shifting narrative voices. Altering/shifting time. Taking the reader along and sometimes not letting them know where they’re at.
Poetic prose.
Voice. circumstances. Bringing out and up from the underbelly.
Visceral. Somatic writing. What am I feeling in my gut.
In the hands/fingers, tips of that are touching the black keys with white lettering.

It rained a good portion of the day. I was cold and took a hot bath.
When the writing is confusing for me, I make images. It makes me feel that I’m processing about my writing through another creative avenue.
It’s much easier to be experimental with photography. The rules are (can be) made up
as I go along.
But I’m glad I’m journaling about writing the book. I know I have always loved reading others process in creating.
Here’s an author who I’d consider somewhat experimental, at least I feel that she stayed true to how she wanted to present her heart.

From Ongoingness, The End of a Diary by Sarah Mauguso
“…The catalog of emotion that disappears when someone dies, and the degree to which we rely on a few people to record something of what life was to them, is almost too much to bear.”

But wait, I just found something even more absolutely on point.

“I often prefer writer’s diaries to their work intentionally for publication. It’s as if I want the information without the obstacles of style or form, and in good writing they aren’t obstacles.”

“Another friend said, I want to write sentences that seem as if no one wrote them. The goal being the creation of a pure delivery system, without the distraction of a style. The goal being a form no one notices, the creation of what seems like pure feeling, not of what seems like a vehicle for a feeling. Language as pure experience, pure memory. I too wanted to achieve that impossible effect.”

I know what she means.

And, yes.

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