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Showing posts from May, 2013

Art Pact 266 - Routine

He shouldn't enjoy it, but he does - the brief sting of pain as the tweezers find purchase and the rogue hair is plucked out of his eyebrow. He examines it carefully, brushing the base of it and feeling the wiry texture. He wonders why they grow like that, when it started. That's being old, he thinks to himself: when even your hair forgets what it's supposed to be doing. Thick beard-like hairs growing out of your eyebrows, sharp black hair in your nose, tufts of white frosting your tragus.

His evening face, in the mirror, is the one he remembers when he's out and about. He looks better in yellowish lighting - night handsome, his brother used to call it, half an insult half a compliment. When he's talking to people this is the face he imagines he has, softly lit and slender. His morning face is deadly, pasty white skin lit by the unforgiving daylight and puffy through lying down all night so that the tides of his body have the opportunity to spread out.

"You…

Art Pact 265 - Interruptions

"There was once a man who mistook his wife for a-"

"Hat?"

The storyteller stared at me, his eyes narrow.

"Hat?" he asked me.

"A hat. You know, there was a book about it. The man who mistook his wife for a hat. By - I mean, I want to say Jamie Oliver, but obviously it wasn't him. Something Oliver."

"Oliver Something," said Besson. "Not Something Oliver. Oliver Sacks."

"Oh, right. Yes, Oliver Sacks."

The storyteller looked from Besson to me and back again, and clucked his tongue. The sun had begun to set behind him, and from where I was sitting it now looked as though it was sitting neatly on the top of his hat. I closed one eye and then the other, causing the red orb to leap on and off the flat platform at the tip of the fabric frustum.

"Are you quite done?" asked the storyteller. I stopped winking.

"Oh, sorry."

"Then I will continue, if I may be allowed the honour of addressing two such…

Art Pact 264 - All The Little Gods

It's sad when people haven't found their god, but there was something more sad and Kelly and I agreed on that - it was when someone found their god and it was something pathetic, like a cardboard box or an ant. I think an ant would have been the worst god, because how would you know it from all the other ants? They run around like crazy, you'd be standing their calling down to your god to do you a favour or to find out whether it was hungry or not, and there would be lots of other ants running around like mad. You'd never know which one was yours. What if your ant god lived in the same nest as someone else's ant god? You'd have to be very careful who you were talking to.

Then again, that's not the worst I've ever seen. The worst was on a TV show about it, about people who'd found their god in unusual places or where their god was something unusual itself. There was a man whose god was a roof tile. Just one roof tile on a house. It wasn't even hi…

One Million Words Day

On January the 3rd, 2010, spurred on by an unfinished NaNoWriMo novel, I decided that I would write a fixed amount every day - 500 words, which seemed to me like reasonable progress to make. I kept it up until April, when I finished the novel. Then I kept going - just writing little scenes, something every day to keep my fingers limber and my brain generating ideas. I did it every day - one holidays, when I was ill, on Christmas day, and so on. Sometimes it was easy, sometimes it was hard, but I kept at it.

When January 3, 2011 came around, I felt comfortable continuing - I increased the writing load to 750 words a day. It was difficult to start with - 250 words extra doesn't seem a lot, but stitched onto the back of another 500 suddenly it seems like a surprise extra mile tacked onto the end of a marathon. Again, though, I got to the end of the year without missing a day. On Jan 3 2012, I started writing 1,000 words a day, and then a year later, this January, I began 1,250 words…