Wow, I’ve not been doing a good job of keeping you updated on my InkStain projects. I may mention some on Twitter and Facebook, but here, on my own yard, I’ve been silent.
I’m not going to attempt to talk about every individual story since Day 44.
I’ve done a few essays during that time, some being personal memoir-type things (like an exploration of trucks with Ferris Wheels on the back of them–“I remember when the carnival used to come to you”). This led me to explore carousels (specifically, carousels in places where carousels should not be) over two stories, both featuring Jill and Jack, each approaching the idea from a different point of view (fantasy versus horror).
Some of the stories were long, some were short, some didn’t quite work. I attacked another theme, the atlas, on two consecutive days, the second being a Doctor Who story without a Doctor.
I’ve written for hours at a time and come away with a cramped hand twisted into unnatural shapes.
I took a day off in January and a day off in February and a day off in March. I’ve permitted myself as many as three in a month.
I finished the black Moleskine with the line: “Please remember, I climbed the tower for love.”
I complained about how I don’t know New York City like I should know New York City, considering I was born in the heart of Manhattan.
And I wrote a lot of fictions.
Some days, I have no idea what I’m going to write until I put the first line on paper. Other days, I have struggling thoughts and ideas trying to be heard. Other days, I know the full breadth of what I’m going to say long before I have any chance to touch the pen.
I’m still using that Cross fountain pen. I’ve seen no reason to change it.
I definitely see these as a whole project, though of course it’s still evolving. The themes have shifted a few times, but I often come back to some of the same imagery. I cannot, for instance, escape the moon, or my own concept of beauty; I cannot escape chocolate and wine and poison and myth and poetry and ink.
And yes, sometimes I’m self-referential.
Overall, I’m finding the project to be hugely inspirational; creativity begets creativity, so I have other projects I want to work on, books (both fiction and not), photography, a few other things. I have a lot to learn and a lot to share. I have no end to my creative aspirations.
Below, a few opening lines from Days 45 through 80:
He struck the match.
A man with a book tucked under his arm boarded the bus.
They called her Whisper.
She walks alone on a long stretch of beach in the last few minutes before sunrise, when the sky is still an indigo tint and there’s a line of red over the Atlantic horizon, a series of clouds or mist behind the pelicans and gulls as they fly by.
They found the carousel in a clearing in the woods.
A man walks into a bar.
He’s sharp. Like diamonds. Diamonds in his brain, and broken glass in slivers, slit quick cutting, slashing, flashing, shining in the moonlight.
The clock missed the hour.
She’s surrounded by metallic faces.
You get it sometimes, too, don’t deny it. On no particular day, I woke feeling the urge to quest.
Beijing is the City of Kites.
The door, a ghost of itself, haunted the doorway.
She was a young storm, and quite beautiful, but also exuberant.
The city: brick and concrete and steel; glass reflecting the sky; rooftop gardens, parks, fountains; churches with bell towers and gargoyles; banks, subways, buses; ornate iron fences and fates; ice cream trucks; carousels; alleys and avenues; smoke, mist, fog; news ink, radio waves, television stars; statues of marble, granite, iron, paper; benches; judges and bankers and bakers and beggars; madmen, poets, and thieves.