Posted on | March 31, 2011 | 2 Comments
It’s a strange experience ‘growing’ a novel – you never quite know what direction it’s going to take you in. I’ve been reading fairy tales for my research, and living with my character Celia Lamprey for some months now, trying to get inside her head. I did a lot of knocking, with no replies, for what seems like months now, but finally she’s letting me in.
People talk about ‘writers block’, and I’m never quite sure what that means. I don’t really believe in it – but I do know that some passages, or characters, or incidents, take a lot longer coming that others, some of which just seem to write themselves (if only that happened more often). Sometimes it’s a good idea to do other things to break the log jam. I’m very excited by my new Facebook pages for The Aviary Gate and The Pindar Diamond – no guesses what my displacement activity has been recently – so come and visit me at Katie Hickman Books. I’m going to be posting up lots of photos – so easy to do from my phone, I sometimes think it’s like magic.
Speaking of which, I was checking out some of my fellow Bloomsbury authors blogs (they have links, as I do, on the Bloomsbury website) and I’m completely bowled over by Neil Gaiman’s author blog. He gives a link to a website, Scary Sunday (says it all), which shows the black and white fairy tale photographs of Japanese photographic artist Miwa Yanagi. These are not for the faint hearted (so this mention comes with a health warning) but so powerful and disturbingly beautiful that I keep having to go back and have another look.
They remind me of another photographic artist who uses fairy tales as his theme, the (I think) Chinese Chan-Hyo Bae, whose exhibition at the Purdey Hicks Gallery in London was one of the best shows I went to last year. Not quite so black, but still disturbing enough. Fairy tales as they were always meant to be – most definitely not for children.
Could it be that in Winter’s Tale I’m about to take a walk on the dark side?