Thursday, April 30, 2009

Ideas of Reference

Over at Mike Barnes's blog www.graphomaniac.blogspot Mike will be posting over the next twenty or so days a long essay which might be understood as a continuation of his memoir The Lily Pond. I read an earlier version of this over the summer, though I've not yet read this new, edited version. I'm quite anxious, though, to read it, and will be checking in every day to read the installments as he puts them up.

I've taken the liberty of cutting and pasting Mike's introduction to this ideas of reference project below, and I'll be highlighting parts of it as he puts it up. But if you want to read the whole thing, I'd suggest bookmarking his blog. This will be worth tuning in regularly for.

(ideas of reference), a sidelong introduction

Starting with the next post I will be entering a long, multi-part prose piece that, based on the draft I have, and if all goes well, should take between 15 and 20 days to correct and enter.

This writing has no title. Or rather its title is a picture, an image that repeats with variations at the start of each of the work's three sections. But because it is tedious to refer to an "untitled prose piece," I am calling it by its bracketed subtitle, (ideas of reference).

It also has no genre, or no definite one that I can see. It seems to loiter between personal essay and fiction, though sidling closer to the former.

I will number its three sections and parts in each post title, so that, for instance, (ideas of reference) 2.3 will refer to the third part of the second section.

What is it about? I don't know if that matters to you. (Especially since I don't know if there is a you. Disabling the Comments and Followers (Followers?!) functions was the first step I took in beginning this blog, a liberating act that I have never regretted and without which 2009 would have expired quickly.) But for some reason I feel the need to try and say.

If I found myself stretched on the Theme Rack in the English Teacher's donjon–that place of dank groans I have long since tunnelled out of, and which I do my humble and secretive best to help others endure and escape from–I might give up this to my inquisitors: (ideas of reference) grew out of my wondering at how one slips toward, and through, the door of insanity (to avoid some more sophisticated but cumbersome phrase such as "states of non-consensual reality"), and then, slipping through and back repeatedly, learns to channel those slipping passages as a source of art: writing as a lucid dream.

But that, barring screams, is all I could give those dear old thugs.

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