Flourish in the Not-Knowing
Heading out of 2012 and into 2013 I've been obsessed with the writing of Donald Barthelme. Currently reading his 60 stories and Not Knowing - the Essays and Interviews. He has this to say, and I've copied it out and stuck it on my door:
'The not-knowing is crucial to art, is what permits art to be made.' and this:
'Writing is a process of dealing with not-knowing, a forcing of what and how.' and then:
'The anxiety attached to this situation is not inconsiderable.'
Barthelme makes me laugh, and humour can be a rare thing in the serious business of literary fiction. He considered how a thing is written to be just as important as what is written so that the art is not about something but is something. I'm keeping this in mind as I move out of the slug of Xmas and holidays and into revising and writing new material for the collection. Also humour. And Eros. More of it in fiction I say. Laughter and Sex. Bring it on.
Say what you mean, says Kurt Vonnegut.
Write what you want, says me. Especially in that raw draft dump. Flourish - that's my word for 2013. Last year I had two, and I had to look them up just now because I've forgotten them already (for the record they were persistence and imagination) That'll teach me, I shouldn't have picked two when I can only remember one. To flourish in the not-knowing, that's really my resolution. To savour it and enjoy it, and so discover something new about how to write, not just what to write.
Lucky I got some money from Arts SA to help me along with the flourishing. Thank you o funding body, you are making my life a shit load easier. To flourish. To flourishing. Fanfare.