September 30th, 2009


Nota Bene

I seem not to have working email so far today. If you really need/want to contact me, please either leave a comment on this post, or phone me (I shall be out c.11.30 -- c.15.00).

Writing and belief: a stray realisation

I've just realised that a key theme in my writing -- apart from water, which literally gets everywhere -- is rationalists and non-believers discovering that the irrational and the weird are real and can affect them.
I have no idea why. I'm not particularly religious/spiritual in the formal sense (though I may be superstitious and I do talk to saints and trees on occasion. Also to the late and loved Caspian cat). I wasn't brought up with any kind of faith. But it's there in Living with Ghosts, particularly through the characters of Thiercelin and Joyain. It's in quite a few of my short stories ('The Whale's Daughter, certainly; 'Coldrush'; 'Clocks'; to some extent in 'Seabourne') and in the various sections of the ongoing, unfinished Gaheris saga.
What's this about? Should I be worried? Is this a sign of Dangerous Fluffiness or WooWoo, a weake girly non-science-yness? Or is it an artefact of a background in, amongst the history, social anthropology, which leads me always to look at the stories cultures tell about themselves, their origins and their environment. I tend to find fantasy novels which either lack reference to beliefs of any kind, or import default cardboard ones, very unsatisfactory. (And somewhere someone must have written a story about J******h's W******s in their mission starship, banging on the doors of new colony worlds.) I tend to be much more convinced by books where the author has clearly thought through how and what peoples believe -- Violette Malan's The Sleeping God, glass_mountain's Children of the Shaman, freda_writes's Dark Cathedral, to list a few. It's about world-building and depth and texture.
And yet, none of that explains this writing tic I seem to have, this 'more things in heaven and earth' -ishness that I seem to be returning to, over and over.


New words: 1002. A bit feeble.
First line of the day: The lesser stables turned out to be a series of yards built in warm brick and cobbles, each horse box larger than any attached to any army barrack in which he had ever been stationed.

Jehan has put the pieces together, but the twins are havering.

Skirt of the day: short grey flippy.
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