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  • In Japan they prefer the realistic style. They like answers and conclusions,
    but my stories have none. I want to leave them wide open to every possibility.
    I think my readers understand that openness. Haruki Murakami

    You ask how my novel is coming. Here is the update, as of right now.
    The novel will be set in Bombay, perhaps, though Dublin also appeals,
    if only because of James Joyce and Molly Bloom, and I like Ireland.
    Having just written that, I realize that Beijing, so much in the news as of late,
    would make another provocative location, dragons, temples, communism
    and all that. Or, I can follow in the footsteps of the Durrells and Henry Miller,
    and just put the whole thing right there in the middle of Corfu. Why not?
    I guess we can say that the venue is still up for grabs. So many choices!

    There is still a question of introducing occasional surrealism, which I love.
    I mean, the fact that Murakami has a large talking frog in his story
    about saving the city of Tokyo has left an indelible impression on me
    in terms of what you can do these days. I am thinking of a talking iguana
    named Einstein, who introduces little snippets of complexity theory
    here and there, and maybe a Raven just for dramatic effect. To be decided.

    Dear Reader, you can see that I have some more thinking to do, and am doing it.
    In truth, my novel is overflowing into my life, like an April river, full of debris.
    There is always this question, people like Hemingway and Virginia Woolf aside,
    as to how one maintains a balance between fiction and reality, and how one lives
    in the grips of one’s literary aspirations and obsessions. Perhaps a kaleidoscope
    of events, places, people, intrigues and commentary would be best, and just
    deconstruct everything into literary pixels and let you sort it out. Would that be fun?
    You see, whenever I try to sneak up on my novel, it dances away, dances away
    like a kite, or an elusive metaphor you see and reach for, but cannot catch.
    There should be a mongoose, and a funeral pyre by the Ganges, and banyans.
    Things are so ephemeral these days anyway. What would be wrong with ephemeral fiction?
    I could give you a selection of locations,characters, possible plots, and you
    would put them together your way, without my interference. What do you think?

    Whatever happens, I definitely want you to be in my novel, just living your life
    and interacting occasionally with mine and keeping me honest, more or less.
    Hey, we each have a novel in us, hidden away in the rag and bone shop of the heart.
    Let’s face it. I am stuck. There, I said it. I need your help. Can you come over and chat?

    (Photograph by AJN in the 3-D virtual world of Second Life)
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