Verses Nature: fieldnotes, January – March 2014

January 2014:

The preceding months have been spent trying to get a clearer picture of the scope of my novel/thesis, Verses Nature, which repeatedly threatens to erupt into a number of works. Maybe what I have on my hands is a trilogy? A section I have been working on for months has nothing to do with Mazelle and Tatar, but with a family and how in it generations of women strive to secure their autonomy from patriarchal structures. This allows me to explore issues both dear and familiar to me (i.e. relating to my own experiences). The smaller scope of this subplot permits me to test new writing styles in answer to my key research question on our reader/writer tolerance levels vis-à-vis multigenre fiction (in my thesis I will refer to phenotypical promiscuity). It also provides an excellent framework for sharing some of my theoretical preoccupations on language and structure, but in a literary form. You could be forgiven for thinking I’ve been sidetracked. I prefer to say I obey where the writing is taking me. Also trying my best to describe my development in a language that’s not too technical: it’s a novel we’re talking about, first and foremost.

March 2014:

Discussing this protagonist and his hold on me, a fellow writer makes a proposition which immediately strikes me as true: maybe, after having ingested him (his type/discourse) for so long, writing about him is a way of spitting him out…

The female characters not only tell different stories, but tell them differently, i.e. using different literary styles. The final result is more like a collage of collective memories in dialogue with and contesting each other. Truth, as a concept, slips away and we are left with life as (His/Her)story:

on marking the contemporary moment 2Gradually, we break free from the authoritative text, into a zone beyond syntax; a zone where time and space as variables in the infinity of meaning gain transparency:

 

binary semantic poster 3

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