Friday, December 21, 2007

Reading other stuff

I have one scene left to write. I know more or less what happens in it. I just have to find a reason to make it happen.

Weird stuff: I haven't read any fiction to speak of since about the middle of October. At first it was because I was speed-reading reference books and I didn't have time to read fiction. Then it was because I didn't want my prose to get "contaminated", so to speak, by anyone else's style. But earlier today I tried to read a chapter or two (of Jim Butcher's latest Alera book)... and I couldn't. I could not get my head around it.

But I find I can read comics. Apparently they live in a different part of my head. I re-read Neil Gaiman's Books of Magic (the original miniseries, not the mostly crappy stuff that came after). Damn, what an awesome comic that was. Vertigo should have never allowed anyone other than Charlie Vess to draw Titania. Ever. The page with Zatara (watch my dust) is still probably the best single comics page I have ever seen anywhere.

Today I re-read the one-shots from Sandman. The first one I picked up was "Calliope".

Oh. My. God.

It was pretty horrible when I first read it; this guy rapes and enslaves a person, even if she's not exactly "human", a sentient suffering being, for his own personal gain. It's much worse now... because now I see the writer's actions as a denial of God. As denying that his inspiration, all inspiration, comes ultimately from God. Thinking that he can go out and take it from somewhere else... Thinking that he's entitled to. As if inspiration were something that belonged to him.

All things belong to God.

I don't know if Gaiman intended it that way. But it's how I'm seeing it right now. I can't imagine what it must have been like for Gaiman, as a working writer, to write that story. I can barely stand to read it. Because there, but for the grace of God, go I...

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