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  • Do you want to see what human eyes have never seen?
    Look at the moon. Do you want to hear what ears have
    never heard? Listen to the bird's cry. Do you want to touch
    what hands have never touched? Touch the earth.
    Verily I say that God is about to create the world.

    Jorge Luis Borges, "The Theologians"

    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.
    Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, she said, rolling her eyes at him.

    Having just written that, I realize that Beijing, so much in the news as of late,
    would make another provocative location, dragons, temples, communism,
    the internet 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!
    I could perhaps do four novels, like the Alexandria Quartet, which would
    be the same story told from four different points of view. But too much work!

    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. Murakami! Now, there's a writer!

    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.

    Of course, it would be hilarious to insert a few of Julio Cortazar's Cronopios
    into the text, but then I would have to include the Famas and Esperanzas
    as well, or they would never leave me alone.

    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. I
    am losing the ability to differentiate between my art and my life. Help me, Jesus!

    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. Death is not an option!

    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? In a world where we are amusing ourselves to death, why
    shouldn't novels 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. Ha Ha!

    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?

    (Edited and reposted)

    (Photograph by Alex in LOCUS, in the 3-D virtual world of Second Life)
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