Sunday, October 11, 2009

Erm... janowellfine

Janowellfine. That's a lovely South African colloquiallism. We love combining positives with negatives to create composite words that have no real meaning.

"Hey, Nerine, how're you feeling today?"

"Janowellfine." **followed by a deep sigh** "I think I'll just carry on sitting here under a rock."

Plainly put, I'm feeling very blegh today.

I've reached another point of weirdness in my life. For a long time I've felt that I have not been pushing myself as intellectually as I should. This has been followed by the rather nebulous realisation that I neither have the time or the material resources to follow up on full-time tertiary education. And if it does happen, I may well be in my forties.

Another realisation has struck me that I can do something about this by reading the collected works of the one man who's been ghosting along at the edges of my vision for the past 10 years saying, "Hey there, you know you want to but yet you choose to rot your brain with crappy genre fiction."

Okay, Mr Jung. I get it. That little nudge by a certain teacher of mine pointing out the work of the Philemon Foundation and the recent release of CG Jung's The Red Book, has been a little red flag, a call to action, if you will.

This has come at a time when I know I need to stretch myself, push my THINKING processes a little further. As an author, I'm in the business of deliving into dreamworlds and bringing back something to the waking world. By all rights I should take this process one step further and find things beyond standard tropes of characters meeting and falling in love then finding the wherewithal to kill the monster and sleep with their mothers. Okay, scratch the Oedipus rex complex but ja... I'm bored.

I read and review stacks of genre fiction novels and they all seem to be telling just the same bleeding story. The best works, IMO, are the ones leaving you slightly scratchy behind the eyes, the uncomfortable stories that seem to have a ring of truth to them resonating with you on a deeper level. Now I want to write stories like that.

As a genre fiction author I've been accused (by a literary agent of all people) of being "too literary" for genre fiction. Should I take that as a compliment?

Right now I'm dissatisfied because I see so many great authors who are mentally lazy. Sure, it's great to switch off your brain from time to time but if you are an author, you are published (or will be) you are in the position to create magic, to bring some small seeds of change into the world.

I blame Tolkien for this, and my mother reading me The Hobbit when I was six.

No comments:

Post a Comment