A character’s right to reply #amwriting

I quote verbatim from a letter received from Julian (RIP).

Aladár Körösfői-Kriesch, Man in Pursuit of DeathNo, my once dear Honoré, you did not have to do it, and I don’t believe a word from you about “being sorry”. The truth, from my perspective anyway, is that you satisfied your petty jealousy, your ambition to have my beautiful wife – and, probably, others as well – play a role she would vehemently refuse in real life, and by that gratuitous murder of me, get rid of your most loyal and reliable friend. As you can see, I still have the strength to reply to your insolent article! You have no honour, Honoré, success and money have rotten your once noble spirit: you are merely after commercial success based on cheap lust.

Your stealing my Facebook page should have been a clear warning, to all of us, that you were leaving the realm of honesty and humanity, for the sake of satisfying your basest desires. Your readers will judge. I consider the lowest insult the way you have since used my wife’s friendship with an old childhood friend, to insinuate damn lies about a sexual relationship that never was. Sarah is far above such behaviour: she’s as faithful as a wife ever was, and will continue to support her husband against your assaults on history and truth. Your own miserable domestic failures cannot be an excuse for those lies.

The same applies to your treatment of my dear friend Melissa. She is, always was, an angel. I confided to you my childhood memories, and you turned them into a pathetic story of revenge and, again, cheap erotica! Shame on you. My Melissa had never anything to do with any plot, with spies, and that girl of dubious reputation you described as “Melissa of Köpenick”. The latter is, I admit, a bit of a flirt I indulged with, during my recovery in Berlin. Not only you got the facts wrong, but you invented on top of all some more pathetic  stories of your own.

But, would you say, you are a writer, and this is fiction… To hell it is not. You are playing with people’s lives, destroying their reputation, killing them without appeal. Despiccable! You wrote: “you became cumbersome, obstructive, calamitous.” This is in fact a good description of your own behaviour as an author, disrespectful to your characters, lacking any care for their feelings.

Sarah was not best pleased to hear that nonsense about me trafficking arms. I had much to explain. She’s now extremely angry with you, for good reasons. We are now talking about some form of action, as we, your characters, can use to express our profound disgust, and our refusal to cooperate. You have been warned.


Image: Aladár Körösfői-Kriesch, Man in Pursuit of Death

#WritersWednesday: the Secret Space, Near You

” But in the end we talked all night. Every story has a time to be told, I convinced her. Otherwise you’ll be forever a prisoner to the secret inside you.” ~ Haruki Murakami, Sputnik Sweetheart 

Alone She longed to see him, to hold him as she used to. But he was no longer there, so she looked in other places. No-one can disappear forever, without trace… She tried to convince herself.

He must be somewhere, perhaps still looking after me, perhaps watching our place, smiling at me? Days after days she waited, searching, listening, expecting a sound, his footsteps, his voice. His voice: what would she have given to hear his voice?

One day she decided to go to the little town, the place of his childhood. It was a long journey. She had prepared herself, before entering the small cemetery. All soldiers there. Once they had visited, together, in the heart of an icy winter. She went to the grave.

Alone she stood. The grey stone held her gaze.

Daily Prompt: Ebb and Flow #amwriting

Our blogs morph over time, as interests shift and life happens. Write a post for your blog — but three years in the future.

September 28, 2016

Sunset over the North Downs The failure of my first book did not surprise me: it was expected, and I was prepared for it. Then there was the second attempt, in a very different register, and the success of that left me speechless for weeks. I owe much to my editor and agent. I owe much to the followers of this blog who kept visiting at a time when the writer in learning was at his lowest… Of course I owe much to my readers, who have come back for more…

Above all I owe it to you: without your decision to go, to change your life, and therefore mine, it would not have happen, I would not have found enough rage in me to write that second novel, to write in a way that had such appeal to people. But now I am wondering. The book of life and happiness failed, the book of despair, betrayal, death and desolation succeeded.

What should I conclude?


From the very roots…

Originally posted on Adventures In American Writing:

The Frontiers of the boundless future,

” I am writing a manifesto and I want nothing, yet I say certain things, and I am against manifestoes as a matter of principles, as I am also against principles…

I write this manifesto to show that one may perform opposed actions together, in a single fresh respiration.

I am against action and for continual contradiction, for affirmation also, I am neither for nor against and I do not explain for I hate good sense….

There is a literature which does not reach the voracious mass. The work of creators, sprung from a real necessity on the part of the author, and for himself. Consciousness of a supreme egotism where the stars waste away…

Each page must explode, either with the profoundly serious and heavy, the whirlwind, the dizziness, the new, the eternal, with the overwhelming hoax, with an enthusiasm for principles or with…

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#BlogMeMaybe: May 3 – May I tell you something about someone else? Daphnée and Sarah

 I want to tell you today about two people I care very much for. I have known them for a while, indeed, they are close friends. You may have met them already there. Writing this makes be smile.

But I’ll let one of them, Daphnée, tell you, herself, how she met the other. So it goes…

D: I am  a writer, and a successful one at that. I am also deaf and mute, from birth. This does not affect my writing, all the opposite.  I needed a translator, for a novel that was so successful that publishing houses were pushing my own publisher to let them translate and publish elsewhere, for a lot of money.  However I had retained the rights for other countries and wanted to keep my work as mine.

So I did some research, and advertised. 

My ad said: “ Published and successful deaf-mute writer seeks an independent, proven and qualified translator, from English into at least three EU languages, as well as Russian and Japanese. Please reply to xxx.”

And Sarah replied, one of a few dozen replies I received. But hers was special. She said:

S: I am an experienced translator into four European languages (German, French, Dutch and Italian), and Russian and Japanese. I’d love to work with you. I must tell you that I am paraplegic from birth, and work mainly online. However I am prepared to meet you in town, if you wish, but please make sure you chose a place suitable for my chair.

I know how to talk to you.”

I thought about the last remark, and concluded Sarah knew sign language. I thought it was rather sweet of her to say that. Her credentials were perfect. Sarah mailed me a picture of her as well. I looked at it, hesitating, somehow moved by it. Her red hair came out of the photo, framing a beautiful elvin face, with a smile, well, explosive, lighting her delicate features. That photo went straight to my heart. I replied, and attached my own pic, that of a tall athletic black woman, who could have been a model. I said I wanted to meet, and gave her a date, and the address of a wheelchair friendly bar in London.

 On the day, I was sitting there, the place was already busy and, I assume, noisy. I ignored the usual show of males parading and approaching. I was wearing my badge: “F***off I’m mute”. Then I saw her, she was wheeling herself into that place, gracefully, and I realised that the bar had fallen silent. All eyes were turned to her. She was exquisitely beautiful, in a way that only exists in dream, or in the mind of a writer. I stood up, went to her, greeted her in signs, she smiled, replied, and as she spoke I read her gorgeous lips, my heart beating the chamade, and I helped her to my table. We looked at each other, silent for long seconds. We talked about the book, then ourselves, then were silent again, just absorbing the pleasure of each other’s presence. We talked again about ourselves. Our hands touched, ever so lightly. Then she signed:

“ You are how I imagined you would be. I know this is a professional interview, and I am at risk of failing. I am just very emotional, and you are so impressive.”

She succeeded as you already know. Ever since, we have been working together, and she’s of course much more for me now. As I am for her.