Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Really Not In the Mood

For those of you come looking for my TT, I guess i won't be posting it until sometime tomorrow. I just can't get my mind wrapped around it. While Ed was getting his TT prepared this afternoon, I turned the TV on. Just minutes after the story of the bridge collapse in Minnesota broke. I was caught up in that story for the next four hours or more and probably still would be if my niece hadn't arrived. Though I probably would have had to turn off the TV a few minutes later anyway when Ed came to bed. My niece and I then went out on the porch to visit for the next three hours. Most of that time she was listening to me talk about my story world and the problems I was having getting certain plot elements pinned down.

I was especially disturbed by the images of the bridge collapse on so many levels. I feel as though I am in some stranger's dream world. It doesn't help I suppose that I never slept today. I worked straight on through the night and the morning and into the afternoon. What I was working on was research related to my story world. And that research took me into a netherworld of blogdom and web sites that made me feel like I was lost in an X-Files episode.

See, I needed to learn something about non-mainstream Christian sects with doctrines and belief systems that are related to but even more out there than the one I was raised under. Bea use I have some characters who come out of a very controlling sect have to totally relearn how to think and how to interact with the world around them. Yes, similar to what happened to me. But I did not want this to be autobiographical to any further degree than that. I wanted the sect to be distinctly different. Possibly even more bizarre seeming to me than my childhood world view was to my schoolmates. And I wanted the events in their lives to be totally unrelated to any specific events in my life. As I don't want there to be the least suspicion that I'm basing any of these characters on anybody I know.

I am exploring, through them, the experience of having your entire belief structure collapse on you and then having to put the world back together in your head like a jigsaw puzzle. No, like multiple jigsaw puzzles mixed together with missing pieces. The trauma of it really cannot be expressed in simple expository prose. My story world may have actually been my therapy, and my working out the complexity and trauma of what happened to me via a sort of parable. Maybe that was why I was content to keep it to myself mostly. Until a year ago when I let my niece read one of the stories from it and was amazed at her reaction; by how touched she was by the characters and their plights; how accepting she was of their eccentricities; how enthused she was to know what happened next. It is because of her reaction that I began to think seriously again about getting back to work on Faye and Julia's story. [followthe Friday Snippets or Fruit of the Spirit Storyworld lables if you are clueless as to what i'm talking about here]

But neither of the two stories I've completed so far have touched on the substance of the plot line, which is their religious upbringing in an isolationist, fundamentalist sect and their eventual repudiation of it as adults. It was at least partly fear of tackling this issue that had been holding me back. The two stories I have completed are slated to be chapters one and three. Chapter two is the story that introduces the sect and its squabbling factions. This story also involved Apocalyptic themes of catastrophe--real, imagined, prophesied, historical. Floods, famine, plague, war, nuclear annihilation, volcanoes, earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, vehicle collisions, collapsed bridges.....

So I've spent most of the last week inside the heads of characters who are anticipating or experiencing or remembering catastrophes. Then I spent most of the last twenty-four hours reading about bizarre doctrines, sects, theologies on web sites put up by their adherents or their detractors who are adherents of equally bizarre world views.

And then I turn on the TV.

4 tell me a story:

Candy Minx 8/02/2007 1:11 PM  

Hi Joy, I've got the news on in the background...what a sad story. And it seems so impossible that such a disaster could happen with a modern bridge doesn't it?

I pray for the poor families. On a sweeter note, all the people who helped peopel give an inspiration...the school bus the frightened...some brave people really helped them out.

I'll come back to check on your TT, there are some beautiful stories among the sad remember and please don't be too's hard I know...


Tink 8/02/2007 2:28 PM  

I saw it on the news, it's horrible. I'm burning a candle for those hurt and their families.
My TT teaches a geography lesson of The Netherlands. I'll be back to read yours.

Susan Helene Gottfried 8/02/2007 3:11 PM  

Interesting juxtaposition going on in your life right now.

Find the power in there and let it fuel your writing.

Sparky Duck 8/02/2007 8:20 PM  

well I too totally bagged my planned post last night, so I understand the problem of changing in mid stream. I dont get the religious thing, though probably because you are still tugged in different directions, while I hate anything having to do with that guy with the funny hat in Europe.

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