Thursday, May 31, 2012

A Pairing, For Your Delectation…

Coffee snobs the world over, rejoice. Rejoice, I say. Because now the concept of pairing (putting two things together that were made for each other) has come to writing.

Yep. I knew it would be good, too, just like coffee and bacon, before I even tried it. Let me explain. I was trudging through a lengthy novel that was mildly interesting. I was into the triple digit pages and it still hadn’t bitten me. I decided on another trip to the library to find something good. When I found Stephen King’s 11/22/63 on the shelf, I walked straight to the checkout. King’s latest is a novel about the possibility of changing history; a book that asks the question, “What if Oswald had been stopped from assassinating Kennedy?” And it’s a ripping read so far. I’m less than halfway through it.

That much I expected. What I did not expect was a parallel inspiration in my own writing.

I used to fret that, if I wrote while reading another author’s work, I would subconsciously copy it. Not so, dear boy. Or girl, if you are one. No, reading King’s work has inspired me to think clearly in regard to my own, igniting the fires of my imagination in entirely different directions.

What I’m doing is alternating from King’s book to my own rough draft of The Wagner Diary. I’ve found a good pairing. Already it’s taking on new and previously unimagined traits. And I’m loving it. I thought I had written myself into a box a bit in Marsburg. Not so. For those who are truly creative, there is no box. If there seems to be, one can think one’s way out of it.

And I’m changing up the layout of things a little here. While Marsburg was built around the writings of a dead man, in Wagner things are shaping up to be a little more…contemporary. Of course there are plans to integrate the antiquarian bent of the Airel Saga Diary Series, and this book will have Teutonic overtones, but it should turn out to be cracking good.

If it’s half as good as King’s work, it will be. I’ll keep you posted on that.