Saturday, 18 January 2014

What Is Our Art Worth?

I'm writing.


No really, I'm actually writing!

I had to unplug the X Box 360.

(Go away, GTA 5, torment me no longer, you foul seductive temptress).

But I am writing!

I had a new idea!

28,300 words into my actual second book and I got a new idea! Books are like women. You have to marry them to forget them.

(Just kidding, Kira, kiss kiss kiss, hug hug hug)!

So I'm writing more and that's good. I started a new novel and on page five, a thought struck me.

'Am I saying anything of substance or just putting words on a page?'


'Is this any good?'

(No real writer can often tell gold dust from bull shit).

I actually thought about the worth of the story, the characters, ultimately; is this worth me putting out into the world?

At the risk of sounding pretentious, I want my art to MEAN something.

Vampire literature has taken a SERIOUS nosedive over the last few years and is no longer taken seriously (Rice and Stoker notwithstanding) so it may come as no shock that my new idea has NOTHING to do with vampires.

Don't get me wrong. I love vampires and I'll be damned (see what I did there?) if I'm going to let childish sparkly faerie stories push me away from them but I want to create something that's grounded, that's honest, that's REAL!

One of my favourite movies is David Cronenberg's 1996 controversial Crash.

Based on J.G Ballard's 1973 book of the same name, it's hypnotic, cautionary, grounded, elegant, DIFFERENT, original, daring, provocative and REAL. It says something and today, it still means something.

I want to write something with that kind of power that LASTS!

Not merely something that shocks, that's all too easy, but something with a VOICE. If it shocks through it's message, that's a good thing, but not if it's done in a cheap manner.......

I'm continuing on both novels simultaneously, Hotel Nomad and Raven (yes, that's the title of what will be my third book) and work is proceeding well.

But I want my fourth book to be the runt of the litter, so to speak. Something grounded and real and provocative.

I am confident and forthright in my quest.

P.S : This is a question to other writers, ever had an idea that was SO GOOD you were shocked no one has come up with it before?