Posted by jeanne
i’ve completed another milestone, tho you can’t see it. i’ve finished transferring all those hundreds of pages of research to my union documents. the union documents are the 42 chapters separated into 6 sections of 7 chapters each, and they’re filled with everything that has to happen, and everything behind what has to happen, and all the realworld references for all the things that have to happen in each chapter. they’re all very long and bulky, and organized into topics and characters. i’ve covered this before. i’ve been assembling the research for 6 months now, and there are hundreds of pages, and now all that bulk is added to the union documents. i’ve put a nice big separating line in the research document, and all the new research i do after today will go behind that line for distribution later. i’ve been color coding and everything. it’s been a real strain on the computer, with the 6 union documents open, and the research document, and my browser with its several dozen open windows.
this evening i started to do the same thing with my miscellaneous character notes, a document that contains all the things the various characters go thru, like fairy dealing with victimhood and snake abusing the 48 laws of power (sharing a few of them with c3ll3r!, who will use them to free herself). i still also need to go thru the comments document for all my original ideas, to make sure they’re all in there.
just a few minutes ago, i downloaded all the research i’ve posted on this blog, from books i got out of the library, for example do you quantumthink? and rules for radicals and level design for games. and now i have to go thru 483 pages of notes and continue extracting research from this new blog research document into the union documents.
so there’s still a great deal of work to be done before i start writing. but that doesn’t mean i’m not already writing, just that it’s still formless. in the void.
i have been reading other peoples’ fiction lately – i finally read the hunger games, and some really great fantasy like kage baker and hilary mantel and emma bull, and now i’m reading absurdistan, and all the while i’m thinking about my story, how will it sound, how will it come out?
i’ve been thinking about what i’ve been researching, too. all this politics. all this political theory. all this history. the technological breakthrus that are occurring in so many fields. climate change. revolution. all these heavy topics. and at the same time i’m trying to internalize the quantum lessons my own self, i’m trying to evolve just enough to describe it before struggling toward the next moment, and describing that.
i’m getting excited as the time for writing approaches. the same excitement i felt in the beginning of this process, when it just occurred to me, and before it got so complex. now, after 6 months of plotting and scheming, i know what has to happen, and i know when it happens. the story is almost tidy enough to begin, there just needs a little more moving things around, cutting and pasting into correct chapters, stuff like that.
the one thing i don’t know is how things will happen. or even who will do what when. i’ve built enough uncertainty into each development, each chapter, that i can pick which character or event thru which to show what piece of the whole needs to be seen next.
this still makes me a little nervous. i can see vague outlines when i look from a distance, and can follow the progress easily, but it all smudges up when i press my nose to the glass and breathe.
i still have no idea of my narrative voice. i always like talking to my audience, like a missive, like how i’d run on if i cornered you in an elevator. but i can’t afford to be preachy, or sound like a textbook; all of that research has to become invisible. and if i took all the research out of the union documents, then it would be a few descriptive words for each chapter, and that would be it.
because this is all floating around in my head all day, it blends with everything else that happens. we watched mysteries of lisbon the other day, and i was taking notes about dramatic staging the whole time. and we watched little senegal and i was doing characterizations. even no strings attached had me thinking about plot devices and timing. and then the plots and situations of these movies go and blend with the background thoughts i’m having about my story, and mix again with my dreams, and i end up not really knowing which is which. the whole thing becomes a fluid, dreamlike recall of a book i haven’t written yet.
i am, in a quantum way, taking the creative process backwards. it’s perfectly feasible to start from the end point, because quantum physics works backwards, using actual time travel. i’m spending actual time and energy visualizing what the story will look like, what it will sound like, how it will go. i figure if i can see how it turns out, then i can write it like that. this, in fact, is the original vision of the two main characters, who get a good glimpse, and then have to create it the way it was shown to them. it’s as good a way as making it up as you go along. better, really, because it starts with how it has to be and works backwards, a damn sight more sure than narrowing down an infinite number of possibilities.
i can’t see the cover yet. but i can see people reading it.
the big trick is to present the keys to quantum change in a way that makes readers experience the change in themselves. one of the books i just read had the hero go down into the earth with his mind and change something vital. this is just the kind of thing i want to teach – you could easily do this if you developed your quantum powers. but i don’t want to stop with showing the hero doing it. i want the readers to do it. i want everybody clapping for tinkerbell the whole time.
how do i do that?
since i’m writing this on quantum principles, i am going with no real plan. plenty of equipment, but only a suspiciously vague mapquest printout beside me as i head off into the sunrise.
so presumably i will figure out how to infect others with this as they’re reading it. i don’t know how. but that’s the whole point of writing it. other than what good i get out of it, of course. it’s the problem with teaching zen, teaching enlightenment. it’s very simple to attain enlightenment. the trick is in choosing to do so. it’s a quantum state, so it’s not like there’s a gradation between regular consciousness and enlightenment. it’s a leap.
the sufis can do it. reading sufi inspired literature, you are reading one thing off the page, and your mind is processing an entirely different thing at the same time, and the whole thing combines to give you interesting insights. there are other examples of this in other disciplines. you first experience nothing unusual, then it becomes chaos, then it resolves a different way and you understand that you didn’t understand anything before.
you can learn to be a zen master just like that. you can attain enlightenment in the blink of an eye. you can just decide to do it, and there you are. babies are masters and forget almost everything by the time they can speak but for us, it’s a combination of willpower and surrender. but it’s still possible.
my task is to create the air of this happening in each reader. to show the leap and get them to follow, and to do it over and over again until it becomes their habit. that’s how it would work if the whole thing were really a videogame. and of course i have no idea how i’m going to do that.
if it were just up to me, i’d quit at studying all this stuff and trying to apply it to my own life. but it’s a compulsion, and a need to spread this around, so that’s what i’m doing. it’s going to be a miracle actually accomplishing it. it’s going to involve channeling some interesting material.
because when i write, i basically disengage one part of my mind and let the words flow into my head and out thru my fingers. i don’t even think about how to spell words at this point, and i’m typing well over 80 words a minute. it flows; it feels physically good as my fingers fly over the keyboard without any hesitation at all. and when i look at what i’ve written, i often don’t recognize it.
i’ve been watching myself think lately, as an exercise. i was taking notes the other day, from the quantumthink(r) book, and there was the part of me that was looking at the book and keeping my place and reading the words off. these words sounded in my head as i read them, and there was a part of my mind controlling my fingers and making sure they went to the right keys at the right time. another part of my mind was catching spelling errors that my fingers missed, and making me stop and back up and correct the spelling. another part of my mind was scheduling how much i had to go on the page, and thinking about how much more i had, and how much i’d done. there was another part of my mind that was thinking about the newsfeeds i was digesting that morning. there was the part of my mind that is always chewing over my story in the background, the hazy dreamy part i mentioned earlier. all these layers of my mind were operating at once, and they were all distinct, and i was totally comfortable with the gentle murmer that all these streams of consciousness were making.
the i that was totally comfortable, i suppose, is what you’d call the observer. the overseer, the one that watches. this, of course, is like the turtles that hold up the universe, in that there’s always another level of watcher no matter which way you look. i suppose god is the last layer of watcher, the watcher that watches all the others, but this would be slightly outside my normal frame of reference.
being quantum means dealing with t his. that we’re not just one personality inside, not just one voice. we don’t get up on the same side of the bed every morning. each day we are different, sometimes drastically so. the universe corresponds to our minds, not in a causal way as such, but i’m working on the premise that the condition of my mind on a given day is what primarily conditions the kind of day i’m having.
how do you teach that? and even tho enlightenment is simply a choice, how do you get people to make that choice? it’s only a simple change of habit, a tiny little thing
that completely changes your entire universe.