So, I've been a little disappointed in myself. I have over the last six months, become incredibly distracted, removing myself from my daily writing routines, and instead getting myself into all sorts of emotional trouble. This however, is not necessarily a bad thing
A while ago, a very close friend to me said that I needed to take a break and stop pushing myself so much, and that; 'if you're going to tell stories, you need to have them to tell'. Which I took on board, and I guess, have been pursuing ever since.
The second novel, which I blogged about almost a year ago now (madness, where has the last 12 months gone?) has since then, taken on a completely new life, and whilst worryingly difficult in terms of the science that I have had to figure out behind the world I'm writing about, I am very happy with where it is going. The lack of progress has been upsetting in parts, but I told myself, it will happen when it's ready, and now it is ready. I have rendered a lot of the structure that I was confused about, and have decided to enter in short, 1000-1500 word, hallucinogenic / dream like stories of the different characters at different points, in first person. This is my first time writing in first person, and I'm finding it completely amazing, I love it, especially with the dream like sequences that I'm putting down
Anyway, I wanted to share one, it's when the lead protagonist Push Burrows meets his future wife for the first time, and is largely based on a date that I had with a beautiful girl who is now a very dear friend. I wanted to demonstrate how life really is the fuel for writing, and even in science fiction, you need to live to be able to tell the story.
And if you care to read it, please listen to this at the same time:
I wake and my heart pounds. I’m stood outside the British Film Institute on the South Bank of the River Thames in London. I am on annual leave from Contrent Hotaru, and the madness that is Africa at this point in time. I am holidaying and experiencing the history of this vast city. The air is thin and carries a slight scent of the sea, transported in-land by the river. People bustle all around me, forward steps through their own time and place. My fingers rub my thumbs, looking for a moment of tactile feedback, of sense, of touch as I stand numb amongst the throng, taking it in, taking them all in.
I am about to meet my future wife for the first time.
I move, nervously stepping into the midst, into the crowd, across the pavement, under the bridge, up to the entrance, eyes floating all around, sunk in the sockets of their heads, the people all chatting, all talking, all embracing their night, their evening, their company. Inhaling their smoke, gulping their drink, swimming in their smiles, the teeth reflecting light orange and gold from the burning winter lamps scattered around the entrance.
I prepare myself for her arrival. Walking inside, the restaurant to my right, the bar to my left, I enter into the crowd, I can feel their electricity, I can feel the micro changes in air density, the cells on my body thump with their presence. The hot, moist environment of the bar, the beer tainted air, the gurgling laughter, the tilted heads, the night sky outside, the orange across the water, the tiny specks of white car lights reflected a thousand times in the glass walls of the building.
The hub of people, deep against the bar, pushing myself into them, into the matted layers of fleshes and cottons and leathers, my throat swells. The crisp money in my hand, the lean on the mahogany bar, the smooth wooden surface splashed with flecks of foam and liquid.
I take the drinks outside, minute clouds of smoke released from the lungs all around enter my own, making my brain twitch, receptors fire at the hint of nicotine and as I sit the wine in front of me ignites my adrenaline.
She is not far now, walking along the bank of the river, dodging in and out of the people, thinking quietly a million things all at once, absorbing the centuries of architectural beauty lining London’s great artery and smiling.
I’m looking for her, as my blood rushes and fingers crack and pupils dilate, sipping, patiently, ambivalent about my reason for being there, intensely curious about the immediate future. No plans, no environmentally determined fate, no prophecy, no next steps lurking ready to entrap, no solid purpose, just unknown future.
The noise feels immense. Surrounding laughter and screeching and talking and shouting and tiny little whispers and huge echoing roars from all corners, none of them talking to me.
A plane existence, without longevity, without time, just a moment, then I look up and see her hair, and notice her skin flowing toward me, floating in the rippled air full of heat and waves and impulses and energy and the wind.
Our eyes meet and I rise in an instant, forgetting all. Forgetting the uncomfortable throb of existence, forgetting the powerful quake of thought, forgetting the rising undulating power consciousness, forgetting the wild aura of life and sound and light around me. Displacing my heart and the primordial reactions of my inner brain, uprooting the all-powerful, irresistible charge of my genitals, nullifying the trauma of everything that I have to absorb and understand in every single moment. Just her.
Just a step, and a smile, and a scent, and an embrace and I swell, and my heart abounds and my brain flashes and my nerves erupt in the magnificent warmth of her vigour as the life around me glows and cascades and fingers my soul with stunning hands.
She pulls me back revealing herself. Her delicate features, her smile; wide and deep, pushing rosy cheeks high and forward on their bones, raising her square glasses which illuminate astonishing blue eyes, piercing through their horizontal crescent on her beaming face. Long, thick, curling hair flows and falls down and around her shoulders, its faint tint of strawberry blonde glowing and resonating with the life around it and the waves of thrilling consciousness emitted by her skull.
Reverberating stillness, a moment, her and I, in a room, resounds with deep tones rippling our souls.
I am utterly confused and enraptured, simultaneously. Enraged and engorged. The chatter and life and suffering and grief and joy and happiness and constructions and conversations break back in. The physical and emotional potential of what has just taken place instantly changes me, I am no longer who I was a moment before. I am different, and forever will be. I but I don’t yet understand the ramifications of then, I cannot dictate to myself any form of what will become, I cannot tell any story of what might happen next, I cannot see passed what is there, because I am no longer what I thought I was.
My fibers shake and my blood grows hotter. I take her to the table I had chosen for us and as we sit our hands brush lightly. Patterns scatter before me, troubling winds slowly gather and blow in my thought, my future has changed, because of her, and we begin to talk.
I long to hear her thoughts, each and every breath, I hang on each word as the emotion pours and flows from her mouth like a gushing torrent of thought. I watch her mouth moving and her teeth hitting each other, the nature of her face, each element interacting, as my breathing quickens and slows in time with her rhythmic chants.
I ask her questions, endless questions, to maintain her flow to keep those deep eyes that house so much rich emotion and kindness and sadness and joy and empathy working, to experience the haphazard, interloping pangs of neck arching laugher and gulps of wine and puffs of cigarettes.
We begin to move around the city at night, brushing skin with each other and the people all around us. In motion with the things, the manipulated elements, reconstructed into the vast city on all sides, deep within its sparkling heart rising into the sky, a luminous and pulsating and frightening jungle of steel and concrete and glass and iron.
We find another bar, and then another, and then another, before settling in a place devoid of people but full of ugly waves of indeterminate music and we sit. Her face is before me, backlit with reds jumping from the floor, awash with all the intricacies of life. She is in love but her heart is broken. All that she is. Her words and smiles and laugher continue to flow, and I try to absorb it. All her conflict, all her passion, the complete, never ending wonderful, beautiful turmoil from which she cannot escape, from which she is the thankful slave.
Without need for sound, without need for words, I lean in, across the table, and our lips meet and my body grows hard and tense and lustful. I bring a hand around the back of her neck and into her hair, massaging her skull as our mouths open and our tongues touch and her fluid and being runs into my mouth and I taste her.
We skim across the city at night, jumping in and out of bars, bright, powerful cocktails fuzz our senses and fuel our connection. She pours, stories and tales of joy and sorrow. Her hand slowly reaches into mine, delicate fingers run along my palm and excite my being.
I smile as the city begins to close and we make it to the lift of my apartment block. The bright florescent neon tubes light her skin differently, a vivid white, an alabaster scene in which she smiles and nuzzles her face into the base of my neck where it reaches my collarbone, and I feel safe, and I hope she feels safe, and I swear I’ll never let her go.