Sunday, October 7, 2012

Changes in the Air

I resonate with this image of a butterfly in an ambiguous field of color depicted on this art card because I am on a journey of transformation and changes as well.  I'm excited about so many things.  One of them is that I have started a novel.  It is about 1/3 of the way to being finished, so I have a lot of work to go.  It centers around a 14 year old African American girl who has many trials and tribulations many of which are in the spirit realm.  You might call the book paranormal fiction or alternative spiritual fiction; though the main character if young the book is not a young adult reader, it is meant for adults.  Set in two locations, the New Jersey Pine Barrens, my original home, and the outback of Australia.  Not just a backdrop, the landscape plays an important role, it is lush, mysterious and interactive with the story.  In some ways it reminds me of "the Color Purple" and in others, "Girl Interrupted." I have definitely been influenced by the magical films directed by M. Knight Shymalan. At her young age she already knows she is bisexual, she has been molested and she might have an eating disorder.  She has also been possessed by a spirit.  I am having a lot of fun writing my first novel, enjoying all of its twists and turns.  It is so different from nonfiction, it feels more in line with the type of creative process I go through making my paintings. I wrote, flat out and nonstop for a couple of weeks.  Then on chapters 8 through 12 things slowed down with my muse.  I'm planning to get back at it today.  Yolanda, my character, is traveling from Sydney back to the forest in New Jersey, begrudgingly.  She loves Australia and doesn't really want to return to the states and her troubles there. The muse has been an important part of the development of this novel. When she is with me, words just flow like water but when she leaves my pen dries up.  I think I'm going to have to fetch her and not wait for her to return on her own.  How I will do that, I'm not certain. Maybe I will call on some of Yolanda's powers.