Neile Graham (neile) wrote,
Neile Graham
neile

Report from Week Four of the 2012 Clarion West Write-a-thon

Hey, all--

Thank you again for supporting my writing and Clarion West.

This was a great week. Connie Willis is such a wonderful presence at the workshop: a lovely person and full of both nuts-and-bolts and inspiration. The class seems to be tired (what a surprise) but otherwise holding up well. I suppose I am the same.

Again I barely managed to complete my seven hours offline. There was just so much to do, but I'm glad I managed it. The new novel now feels that it has a solid foundation. It's not coming as quickly as I might hope (so much for my wish to have a complete first draft before returning to my UW job in September) but I'm pleased with what I have, and especially am having fun working with my smart-mouth protagonist.

This week's poem was a bit of a struggle, too. It arose from reading up on Scottish alchemists, and I'm not certain why I started doing that. They don't have anything to do with the novel that I know of, nor particularly for the poems I want to work on, except the Scottish part, and the magical thinking part, maybe. One article I came across included a 17th-century English translation of a 16th-century poem written in Latin by Scottish alchemist, George Buchanan, which basically is a refutation of Copernicus, arguing how the earth really is the center of creation.

I found these sections scattered through the poem and my own words started to build themselves around them. It felt random but also obsessive. This is very much a first draft, but here it is. It's about writing and reading messages, and lighting a spark where there is none.

I hope you find it interesting, and thank you again for supporting my writing.

Love,

--Neile

----------


The Alchemy

-- Georgij Bucanani de Sphaera. Lib. i. in English verse translated by I. C.--

_The tymes of light & shade, Turnes heat to Colde,
And sunne & moone with darkenes doth enfolde,_

spark a match to the wick. Light the dark.
This is the small apocalypse we live
each day, our cells dying as we build
ourselves anew. Open the book. Inside it:

...

-----

[The full text of the poem is available to anyone who sponsors me in the Clarion West Write-a-thon or who cheers me on.]
Subscribe
  • Post a new comment

    Error

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 0 comments