Under the omnipotent direction of Robert Olen Butler, I have spent the last 20 hours etching out ‘scenes’ in a $1.27 composition book. These scenes are the matrix of the bones of my novel. I have had this story between my teeth and cheek for at least a year, maybe two. Mr. Butler’s instruction has finally brought it forward – pinched by my incisors – so I may begin to wrestle it. This method is brilliant, frankly. It gives me the freedom of not knowing coupled with the authority to govern what I already know. In short, I can now concretely press on paper that which has been clouding my irises like cataracts without any obligation to that which has not been revealed to me.
After some time – weeks according to Butler – these coming of scenes will dwindle. This is when I will write ever last quivering scene onto a 3×5 index card and begin to build.
For now, the pages read something like this:
– J. opens door to Hall
– J. sits in her chair to read book on her birthday
– H. enters apartment with S.
– D. meets J. on her doorstep when she’s coming home from birthday
I love that this is systematic, yet full of holes.
More scenes later. And, a further discussion of ROB.